Defying Prejudice: Couple Celebrates 70 Years Together Despite Family Opposition to Interracial Marriage

The girl’s family was against their marriage …

Jake and Mary Jacobs celebrated 70 years of being married last year. Their journey wasn’t easy, but their love conquered all obstacles.

Mary faced a tough choice when her father disapproved of her marrying Jake. Despite her father’s warning, Mary stayed committed to her love for Jake.

They met during the war when Jake, from Trinidad, and Mary attended the same technical college. They connected over shared interests, and even though some disapproved of their friendship, their bond grew stronger.

Mary’s family was against their relationship, and when Jake returned to Trinidad, they continued to communicate through letters. Jake later returned to the U.K. for better job opportunities and surprised Mary by proposing. However, Mary’s family rejected her for marrying Jake, and they had a simple wedding with no family present in 1948.

The early years of their marriage in Birmingham were tough. Society was not accepting, making it hard for them to find a place to live, and they faced racism daily. Mary, pregnant at one point, suffered the loss of a stillborn child.

Despite the hardships, Mary worked as a teacher and Jake found a job with the Post Office. Their lives improved, and they made new friends, but Mary still felt the need to explain Jake’s race before introducing him to others.


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Mary’s father disapproved of Jake until his death when Mary was 30. Despite the challenges, Mary and Jake, now 84 and 89 years old, live in Solihull and recently celebrated their 70th anniversary.

Jake shared his experiences of racism in the 1940s, facing abuse daily. He recounted incidents of racial prejudice, like being touched on a bus and not being allowed to work in an office due to racial stereotypes.


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Despite the difficulties, the couple remains deeply in love, with no regrets about their long-lasting marriage. Their story serves as an inspiration, and we wish them many more years of happiness together.

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