Gladys Moseley was born in 1925 and grew up in Bivins, Texas. In her close-knit, Christian home, her parents raised seven children and made sure each went to college. The children's preparation for college started early. If they did not have assigned homework in the evenings after school, her parents would teach the children mathematics or spelling or would give them a book to read.
Moseley remembered the lack of supplies at her schools during and after segregation. Her school received hand-me-down books and equipment from the white school, lacked libraries or lunchrooms, and were not allocated a fair amount of money with which to operate. However, her teachers ensured that their students were given the best education possible. During her grade-school years, Moseley was involved in the Baptist's Young People's Union (BYPU), piano lessons, and her church choir.
After Moseley graduated high school, she enrolled in Prairie View A&M and earned a degree in business education. She later earned a master's degree in elementary education. She received a library science certification from Baylor University and completed coursework at East Texas State University and North Texas State University.
When Moseley finished her schooling, she married Gregory Swanson, whom she had first met in Prairie View. The couple moved to Mexia, Texas and had one daughter, Denise. Moseley taught business-related courses at Dunbar High School in Mexia until she earned her master's degree and was hired as an elementary teacher in Waco in 1962. She became a librarian shortly thereafter and spent the remainder of her career working in various Waco-area schools.
Throughout much of her working and retired years, Moseley attended New Hope Baptist Church in Waco. In addition to serving as a Rape Crisis Center counselor for 14 years, Moseley was active in several organizations including the Foundation of Truth, The Links Incorporated, the Prairie View A&M Alumnae Chapter, the Gamma Upsilon chapter of Phi Delta Kappa, and the Waco chapter of Jack and Jill of America.
More information about Gladys Moseley can be found at the Institute for Oral History.