Anita Roberts
Play • 13 min

Anita Roberts is descended from one of the first families of color in South Bend. Her grandfather worked as a foreman at the Studebaker wagon factory, and her grandmother as a domestic worker in the Studebaker family home. As an adult, Anita moved to New York to embark on a long career, first as a union activist and later as a representative for the International Council of Shopping Centers. She participated in one of the freedom rides, fighting against segregation in a Maryland lunch counter. She even got to meet some of the 20th century’s iconic civil rights leaders like the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King. 

Want to learn more about South Bend’s history? View the photographs and documents that helped create it. Visit Michiana Memory at

Title music, “History Explains Itself,” from Josh Spacek. Visit his page on the Free Music Archive, 

More episodes
Clear search
Close search
Google apps
Main menu