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Hattie Leah Henenberg

Hattie Leah Henenberg

Due to highly unusual circumstances, Hattie Leah Henenberg became a member of the first all-female state Supreme Court when almost every male judge and lawyer in the state had to recuse themselves from a case.

Hattie Leah Henenberg

Born on a farm in Ennis, Texas, on February 16, 1893, Hattie Henenberg was the second child of Hungarian-born Rosa (Trebitsch) and Samuel Henenberg, parents of four daughters and two sons. The family moved to nearby Dallas in 1904 to help her ailing paternal grandfather, Lazar, owner of Dallas’s oldest pawn and jewelry shop. Henenberg took night classes from 1913 to 1916 at Dallas Law School, part of Southern Methodist University. She was assistant Texas attorney general from 1929 to 1930; special assistant U.S. attorney general in Washington in 1934, and an assistant district attorney in Dallas from 1941 to 1947. In addition, Henenberg was a delegate to the 1932 Democratic National Convention in Chicago, a member of the Order of Eastern Star, Business and Professional Women’s Club, Temple Emanu-El, and Dallas president of Zonta International. The ideals of social justice that permeated her quest for legal aid to the poor reflected the principles of Judaism. Judaism also manifested itself through her decision not to marry a non-Jew and through religious observances such as not eating pork.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Hattie Leah Henenberg." (Viewed on September 21, 2014) <http://jwa.org/taxonomy/term/16119>.

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