70 Years Ago She Was Disowned By Family For Marrying A Black Man, Today Their Marriage is Still Going Strong

In 2020, Jake and Mary Jacobs celebrated their 70th anniversary. While this incredible marital milestone is a worthy story on its own, the details concerning the challenges this couple overcame make their achievement that much more remarkable.

During the 1940s, Jake was one of the few Black men living in Great Britain. Mary’s life would have been much easier if she walked away from Jake, but she knew that was impossible — because they were deeply in love.

Mary stayed by his side despite her father’s warnings to leave Jake.

Jake and Mary first met after Jake came over from Trinidad during WWII. Once in Britain, he began taking classes in a technical college as part of his training in the airforce. That’s where he met Mary, who was also taking classes for typing and shorthand.

Mary, a resident of Lancashire during this time, began having conversions with Jake, who impressed her with his in-depth knowledge concerning Shakespeare.

One day Jake and one of his friends invited Mary and her friend to join them on a picnic. However, the date was ruined after a woman cycling past the couple saw two British girls chatting friendly with black men. The woman reported the “incident” to Mary’s father, who was shocked and forbade his daughter from ever seeing Jake again.

When Jake returned to his home country, the two continued writing. And a few years later, Jake returned to England, where he had a good job offer.

Jake and Mary reunited, and she was stunned when he proposed. She was only 19 but readily accepted his proposal. However, they disowned her and threw her out of their home when she told her parents.

Mary said while she knew her father had been “horrified” with that idea of his daughter marrying a Black man, she was too naive to realize that most people at the time shared similar views about their relationship.

Mary said that the couple found it challenging to even walk down the street together as people would rudely point at them.

She soon became pregnant, and the couple was excited at the prospect of becoming parents.

Sadly, Mary gave birth to a stillborn baby at eight months. She said:

Soon, the couple’s life did become a bit easier. Mary took work as a teacher, even rising to the principal assistant position, while Jake secured a decent job at the Post Office. They even managed to make new friends, but Mary always felt the need to explain that she was married to a Black man before introducing them to her husband.

Today, May is 84-years-old and Jake, 89. The couple lives a quiet and happy life in Solihull, located south of Birmingham, where they recently celebrated 70 years of marriage.

Jake says that he doesn’t have any regrets but lectures young black people today how they have no idea just how bad it was for interracial couples and Black people in general during the 1940s.

Despite facing unfair hardships, prejudice, and abusive behavior, the couple’s love never waned as they supported each other during challenging times.

We congratulate Jake and Mary for their 70 years of marriage. These soul mates are living proof that love can overcome anything.

You can also watch a video about this beautiful love story below.

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