Hattie McDaniels' Acceptance Speech
On February 29, 1940, Hattie McDaniel took a long walk from a segregated table in the back of the Coconut Grove in Los Angeles to accept the Academy Award for her role as Mammy in “Gone With the Wind.”
She was the “First African-American” to win an Oscar. Though “Gone With The Wind” won a precedent eight awards that evening, no award presented was more historic than the one presented to Hattie McDaniel as Best Supporting Actress.
Hattie McDaniels’ acceptance speech:
“Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, fellow members of the motion picture industry and honored guests: This is one of the happiest moments of my life, and I want to thank each one of you who had a part in selecting me for one of their awards, for your kindness. It has made me feel very, very humble; and I shall always hold it as a beacon for anything that I may be able to do in the future. I sincerely hope I shall always be a credit to my race and to the motion picture industry. My heart is too full to tell you just how I feel, and may I say thank you and God bless you.”