Georgia R. Lawson, 85, who operated a dairy farm at her home in Boyds for many years and who was a former chairman of the Montgomery County Human Relations Commission, died at her home in Boyds on Tuesday. She had peritonitis.
Mrs. Lawson was one of the first black members of the Human Relations Commission and served as its chairman in the mid-1960s.She held that post at the time that the commission drew up a fair-housing law for the county.
Her other civic activities included helping to start the Head Start program in the Boyds section of Montgomery, membership on the board of the Montgomery County YWCA and volunteer work with the USO during World War II. She also worked with various PTA and church groups, including the Boyds Presbyterian Church and St. Mark's Methodist Church. iShe helped set up the Boyds Federal Credit Union and was a former member of its board. She was a substitute teacher in county public schools in Boyds, Clarksburg and Poolesville.
Mrs. Lawson was born in Springfield, Ill. She graduated from the Art Institute in Chicago and in 1919 married Wilfrid Lawson, then a lieutenant in the Army but an agronomist by training. For several years, the couple taught at colleges, Mr. Lawson teaching agriculture and Mrs. Lawson teaching art.
They were at Delaware State from 1922 to 1924, at Alabama A & M from 1924 to 1927 and then at Tennessee A & I (now Tennessee State) until the mid-1930s.
In 1937, they bought a dairy farm in Boyds and called it "DunRoamin" because they decided that after all their travels they were "done roaming."
Mr. Lawson was killed in a farm accident in 1943. Mrs. Lawson continued to operate the farm until shortly before her death.
Survivors include a son, James J., of Chicago; a daughter, Theresa Wheeler (she was a granddaughter whom Mrs. Lawson adopted), of Boyds; one foster son, Eddy Edwards, of Toledo, Ohio; one foster daughter, Carrie Jenkins, of Berkeley, Calif.; two sisters, Mayme Bound, of Chicago, and Jeanne Goodwin, of Tulsa, Okla.; a brother, Russell Osby, of Chicago; two grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren.