Christia V. Daniels Adair is best known as a suffragist and civil rights work based out of Texas.
Daniels was born in 1893 in Victoria, Texas and grew up in Edna, Texas, the daughter of Hardy Daniels and Ada Crosby Daniels. She attended Samuel Huston College and trained to teach at the Prairie View State Normal and Industrial College, graduating in 1915.
After completing school, Adair taught school for three years and then left teaching after she married and moved to Kingsville, Texas. She joined a women’s group and fought against the gambling establishments and later organized petition drives for women’s suffrage.
Adair realized that she could register to vote, however other black women were being rejected from casting their votes after women’s suffrage was official and because of Texas state laws.
In 1925, Adair relocated to Houston where she joined the city’s NAACP in 1943. She served the chapter as executive secretary from 1949 or 1950 to 1959, through the period of the landmark Smith v. Allwright case, and faced bomb threats when she refused to divulge the group’s membership rolls to police.
Adair worked on desegregation of the Houston Public Library, airport, hospital, and public transit facilities, as well as department store dressing rooms. She was part of the effort to make black Texans eligible to serve on juries and to be hired for county jobs. She co-founded the Harris County Democrats, an integrated organization, and in 1966, Adair was the first black woman elected to the state’s Democratic Executive Committee.