Yesterday's obituary of Belford V. Lawson Jr., 83, a retired Washington lawyer and civil rights activist, incorrectly identified the university from which he graduated and the name of a surviving sister who lives in Chicago. He was a graduate of the University of Michigan. His sister's name is Julia Lochard.

Belford V. Lawson Jr., 83, a retired Washington lawyer and civil rights activist, died Feb. 23 at Southern Maryland Hospital. He had Alzheimer's disease and cancer.

Mr. Lawson argued civil rights cases before the Supreme Court on several occasions and was on the legal team that won the 1950 high court decision, in Henderson versus Southern Railway Co., that abolished segregation in railraod dining cars. He retired in 1977.

Mr. Lawson, who lived in Bethesda, was born in Roanoke, Va. He graduated from the University of Maryland and received his law degree from Howard University. He moved to Washington in 1931 and began his private practice in 1933, specializing in general civil law.

Mr. Lawson was a past president of the Young Men's Christian Association of Metropolitan Washington and a past vice chairman of the United Negro College Fund. He had been a member of the Metropolitan Washington Board of Trade and the Federal City Council.

He also had served on the boards of Madison National Bank, the Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone Co., the American Red Cross, and the Junior Citizens Corp., where he was a past president and board chairman. He was a member of Asbury United Methodist Church in Washington.

Survivors include his wife, former D.C. Juvenile Court Judge Marjorie Lawson, and a son, Belford V. III, both of Bethesda; two brothers, William and John, both of Chicago; and two sisters, Sadie V. Lawson of Roanoke, and Julie Netzlochard of Chicago.