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Switched at birth

Gillette woman shares her story to inspire others facing difficult situations

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On April 7, 2001, on the eve of her 43rd birthday, Shirley Newson received a fateful piece of mail. She’d been unable to open it on her own, for she knew the contents had the power to upend her life and her very notion of self. She went to her then-boyfriend’s house, where they opened the mail together. It contained information that seemed simultaneously unthinkable and obvious.

She needed to tell her mother, Jean Morgan, what she’d just discovered and drove to her house in a sort of daze. Her close friend, Diane Pennington, then the owner of Boardwalk Hair Design, said Newson stopped by the salon on her way to her mother’s. To this day, Newson doesn’t remember it. She just remembers arriving at her mother’s.

Switched at Birth

News Record Photo/Ed Glazar

Shirley Newson, pictured at her home in Gillette, works on the final chapter of a book about her life on April 20. Newson was born and raised Shirley Morgan after being switched shortly after her birth on April 8, 1958, at Campbell County Memorial Hospital. She found out through a DNA test 43 years later.

Switched at birth

Shirley Morgan

Switched at Birth

Files on Shirley Newsom’s desk in Gillette on April 20, 2022.

Switched at Birth

News Record Photos/Ed Glazar

Shirley Newson pulls a letter from Norwin Morgan, a man she grew up believing was her uncle after she was switched at birth in 1958 at Campbell County Memorial Hospital. Newson is now putting her own words into a book about her life.

Trish Bill Shirl
Switched at Birth

Shirley Newson, who grew up as Shirley Morgan after being switched shortly after her birth, was known as “The Little Dark One” while growing up.

Switched at Birth

Magazines among her collected memories tell the story of Shirley Newson being switched at birth on April 8, 1958 at Campbell County Memorial Hospital.

(1) comment


I look forward to reading the book.

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