Luda Fulkerson Barham
Luda Fulkerson Barham was the first woman attorney in Sonoma County. Barham was born in 1872 in Santa Rosa, California, and began teaching in Sonoma County public schools in her late teens and early twenties. She moved on to study law and at age 23, Barham was likely one of the youngest women to be admitted to the practice of law. She became an attorney at a time before women had most common rights, including the right to vote.
In 1895, Luda and her husband were admitted to the California bar and sworn in before the U.S. Supreme Court. They began practicing law together out of an office in downtown Santa Rosa, California.
Luda Barham, one of Santa Rosa’s widely known and most respected pioneering woman, died on July 9, 1947 at 75 years old. The July 11, 1947 edition of The Press Democrat credited Luda as being “a brilliant woman, and a student of national and world affairs.”