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Frank O. Sherrill Papers

Filing title: 
Sherrill (Frank O.) Papers

Frank O. Sherrill papers
MS0405

Summary Information

Repository
J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte
Creator
Sherrill, Frank O. (Frank Odell), 1922-1983
Title
Frank O. Sherrill papers
ID
MS0405
Date
1963
Extent
15.0 Linear inches
Language
English
Abstract
The collection primarily consists of newspaper clippings and letters collected by Frank O. Sherrill. Sherrill was the co-founder of the S&W Cafeteria chain, which, like many other restaurants in the South during the time, denied service to black patrons through the early 1960s. By 1963, civil rights supporters pushed for desegregation of public accommodations throughout the South. S&W faced pressure from the public and from civil rights organizations to desegregate their restaurants, which they ultimately did.

Preferred Citation note

[identification of item]. Frank O. Sherrill papers. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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Biographical/Historical note

Frank O. Sherrill, a Shelby, North Carolina native, co-founded S&W Cafeteria in the 1920s, a chain of restaurants that operated in in North Carolina, eastern Tennessee, Virginia and Washington, DC during the 1960s. The S&W chain had a reputation both for fine food as well as a pleasing, upscale atmosphere, and by the 1970s had grown to twenty-two cafeterias. By 1963, civil rights supporters pushed for desegregation of public accommodations throughout the South, and S&W faced pressure from the public and from civil rights organizations to desegregate their restaurants. Like so many other public facilities, the S&W Cafeterias excluded minorities until African-Americans began asserting their civil rights and demanded an end to segregation. Petitions in May of 1963 and a newspaper article dated June 5 indicate that Sherrill initially resisted desegregation of his restaurant chain, though he eventually bowed to public pressure to desegregate.

During those months of protest in the spring and summer of 1963, Sherrill accumulated newspaper clippings on the issue of desegregation in the South as it affected him and his business. He also received letters from patrons on both sides of the issue (including those who had been his customers for many years), either to encourage him to resist desegregation or to ask that he extend equal treatment to African-Americans. By the end of June of 1963, S&W Cafeterias opened their doors to all customers regardless of race.

[Sources: Frank O. Sherrill papers, UNC Charlotte Library, Mss 405 ; DePreist, Joe, “A Life on the Serving Line,” Charlotte Observer, Friday, December 29, 1995.]

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Scope and Contents note

This collection primarily consists of newspaper clippings and correspondence collected by Frank O. Sherrill in 1963. Letters in this collection are mainly written to Sherrill or his colleagues from members of the public, and either support S&W Cafeteria's segregation policy or ask the restaurant to serve black patrons alongside whites. The bulk of clippings relate to the issue of segregation or integration of public accommodations, and come from newspapers or magazines including the Roanoke World News (of Roanoke VA), The Greensboro Daily News, the Charlotte Observer, the Durham Morning Herald, the Daily Advance (of Lynchburg, VA) and the US News & World Report. The collection also includes a selective patronage list published by the Christian Inter-Racial Witness Association that lists businesses boycotted by the NAACP, petitions in favor of segregation, and a telegram send by President John F. Kennedy, inviting Sherrill to the White House to attend a conference on racial integration.

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Arrangement note

Arranged chronologically in four series.

Series 1, Selective patronage list, 1963

Series 2, Petitions, 1963

Series 3, Correspondence, 1963 and undated

Series 4, Clippings, 1963 and undated

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte 2009

9201 University City Blvd.
Charlotte, NC, 28223
704-687-1170
spec-coll@uncc.edu

Revision Description

 Revised by Rita Johnston. 2015 June

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use note

Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Obtained from Rufus Dalton, in January of 2009.

Processing Information note

Processed by Robert A. McInnes

Available Online

Selected materials have been digitized and are available in the digital collection Frank O. Sherrill Papers, 1963.

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Related Materials

Related Archival Materials note

Harry Golden papers, mss 20. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte; Stanford Brookshire papers, mss 41. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte; Fred D. Alexander papers, mss 91. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte; W.G. Frye photographs, P191/4. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte; M.E. Boyer papers, mss 94, P94/16-30. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections. University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • S & W Cafeteria.

Geographic Name(s)

  • Charlotte (N.C.)--Race relations--History--20th century
  • North Carolina--Race relations

Personal Name(s)

  • Sherrill, Frank O. (Frank Odell), 1922-1983

Subject(s)

  • African Americans--Segregation
  • Civil rights--North Carolina--Charlotte
  • Discrimination in public accommodations--North Carolina
  • Race discrimination--North Carolina
  • Race relations

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Collection Inventory

Selective patronage list 1963 April 3 

Box
1
Folder
1
Box Folder

Christian Inter-Racial Witness Association: Selective Patronage List 1963 April 3 

1 1

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Petitions 1963 May 

Box
1
Folder
2
Box Folder

Petitions in favor of segregation 1963 May 

1 2

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Correspondence 1963 

Box
1
Folder
3-4
Box Folder

Letters received 1963 March 6-July 3 

1 3
Box Folder

Susan Rothwell 1963 March 6 

1 3

R. Bruce Pate 1963 March 28 

1 3

Mrs. Edward Shelton Holmes 1963 May 2 

1 3

Ellen Tripp 1963 May 2 

1 3

W. H. Rogers 1963 May 2 

1 3

Charles Gordon Tate 1963 May 2 

1 3

Harry W. Moore 1963 May 3 

1 3

J. Z. Green 1963 May 3 

1 3

Margaret L. Stubbs 1963 May 3 

1 3

Mrs. H. P. McCollum 1963 May 15 

1 3

James H. Register 1963 May 15 

1 3

Miss F. Louise Madella 1963 May 15 

1 3

Jack Riley 1963 May 16 

1 3

Mrs. Raymond R. Sermon 1963 May 17 

1 3

Kendon Smith 1963 May 17 

1 3

Mrs. E. B. King 1963 May 17 

1 3

F. C. Moore 1963 May 17 

1 3

Elizabeth S. King 1963 May 18 

1 3

Mrs. Porter Cox 1963 May 18 

1 3

R. Clyde Foster 1963 May 18 

1 3

Mr. & Mrs. John F. Troxler, Jr., and Mr. & Mrs. Jerry Troxler 1963 May 18 

1 3

W. W. Shaffer 1963 May 18 

1 3

Earl Leonard 1963 May 18 

1 3

James E. Brown 1963 May 18 

1 3

Bernard D. Sarachek, M.D. 1963 May 20 

1 3

O. B. Holt 1963 May 20  

1 3

M. Harvey Rubin, M.D. 1963 May 21 

1 3

Mrs. W. E. Black, Sr. 1963 May 21 

1 3

R.L.R. Bentz 1963 May 22 

1 3

Mrs. Edmund Berkeley 1963 May 22 

1 3

Mr. J. Edward Burnside 1963 May 24 

1 3

R. E. Barrett 1963 May 24 

1 3

S. Linton Smith 1963 May 24 

1 3

John F. Kennedy telegram 1963 May 29 

1 3

Lewis Pifer 1963 June 5 

1 3

Ernest L. Howard 1963 June 6 

1 3

J. G. Frost 1963 June 6 

1 3

Elva Harrison 1963 June 6 

1 3

J. J. Holderness 1963 June 7 

1 3

Mrs. Thomas Erwin Snelling 1963 June 7 

1 3

H. E. Myers 1963 June 8 

1 3

Ella U. Latham 1963 June 9 

1 3

John C. McIntosh 1963 June 8 

1 3

Mrs. Preston B. Wilkes, Jr. 1963 June 9 

1 3

George H. Beall, Jr. 1963 June 10 

1 3

Louis Prosterman, DDS 1963 June 10 

1 3

James A. Jones 1963 June 18 

1 3

Mrs. R. H. Driscoll 1963 June 18 

1 3

W. H. Hover? 1963 June 19 

1 3

Irvin Elligan 1963 June 19 

1 3

Mrs. Clyde M. Scott 1963 June 20 

1 3

J.A. Hutchinson 1963 June 20 

1 3

Anonymous 1963 June 20 

1 3

Mr. & Mrs. Gies McClinton 1963 June 20 

1 3

“True Americans” 1963 June 21 

1 3

Fred M. Davis 1963 July 3 

1 3

Letters received circa 1963 

1 4
Box Folder

Mrs. James Burson undated 

1 4

Lou Dobson undated 

1 4

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Clippings 1963 

Scope and Contents note

A cursory examination of the headlines in this series reveals a steady change in public perception toward desegregation from May to June of 1963. The May 23 headlines reported “Mayor’s Committee Will Make Attempt to Halt Marches.” On the 26th the headlines announced “Negroes to Negotiate Rather than Demonstrate.” By the June 1 the papers reported: “First Desegregation Step Gets Approval” and four days later the media informed the public that “Charges Will Be Dropped on 1,400 Demonstrators.” On the same day, another paper publicized the fact that “More Businesses in Durham Agree to Full Integration.” By the next day the public mood had cooled and one newspaper reported that “Negro Leaders Halt City Demonstrating: Suspension Called Pending Meet of Interracial Group on Saturday.” Two days later another paper announced that “17 Year Segregation Law Taken off Books.”

When Mr. Sherrill cut these articles from their newspapers in 1963, several of those articles are missing the names of the newspapers from which they came. Other clippings reveal that at least some of them came from the Roanoke World News (of Roanoke VA), The Greensboro Daily News, the Charlotte Observer, the Durham Morning Herald, the Daily Advance (of Lynchburg, VA) and the US News & World Report.

Box
2
Folder
1-4
Box
1
Folder
5-8
Box Folder

Clippings (photocopies) 1963 May 1-23 

1 5
Box Folder

“Militant Truth” 1963 May 1 

1 5

“Hundreds of Students Here Given Releases to Schools” 1963 May 22 

1 5

“More Demonstrators Arrested.” 1963 May 22 

1 5

"Protest Here" 1963 May 22 

1 5

“All Drug Stores in City Integrate Lunch Counters” 1963 May 23 

1 5

“Your Support of the Mayfair Cafeteria and Boy Morris is Urgently Requested!” 1963 May 23 

1 5

“Silent March is Staged by Negroes” 1963 May 23 

1 5

“8 Hotels, Motels Will Desegregate” 1963 May 23 (?) 

1 5

“Mayor’s Committee Will Make Attempt to Halt Marches” 1963 May 23 

1 5

“Mayor Names Committee of 10 On Race Problems” 1963 May 23 

1 5

“Grabarek Given Thanks Warning by Negros” 1963 May 23 

1 5

Clippings (photocopies) 1963 May 24-30 

1 6
Box Folder

“Top NAACP Leader Talks at Mass Rally in Durham… 1963 May 24 

1 6

‘This is a Time for Good Faith’ 1963 May 24 

1 6

“Council to Close Dump on June 1” 1963 May 24 

1 6

“Decision On Dump Believed to Lessen Danger of March” 1963 May 24 

1 6

“Interim Committee At Work: Subgroups to Begin Discussions Today.” 1963 May 25 

1 6

“Mayor Asks Committee to End Racial Rallies in Downtown Areas.” 1963 May 25 

1 6

“Negroes March Again” 1963 May 25 

1 6

“Greensboro Negroes gain Conduct March” 1963 May 25 

1 6

“Negroes to Negotiate Rather than Demonstrate” 1963 May 26 

1 6

“Open Letter to Greensboro Businessmen” 1963 May 26 

1 6

“Desegregation Goals to be Revised Here; ‘Sit-in’ Arrest Made” 1963 May 28 

1 6

“Possible Solution to Racial Issues Now Indicated: Protest Costs Mount” 1963 May 29 

1 6

"Interim Committee Has New Reports, Schedules Meetings” 1963 May 29 

1 6

“A Definitive Ruling is Needed” 1963 May 29 

1 6

“Bi-Racial Group Named” 1963 May 29 

1 6

“Man is Beaten During March in High Point” 1963 May 29 

1 6

“Restaurant Owners Reporting Progress” 1963 May 30 

1 6

“Negro Impatience Prodding Kennedy” 1963 May 30 

1 6

“Bobby Unveils New Rights Proposals” 1963 May 30 

1 6

“JFK, Governors Discuss Negro Rights Over Lunch.” 1963 May 30 

1 6

“Negro’s Battle for Equality Not Confined to Deep South” 1963 May 30 

1 6

Clippings (photocopies) 1963 June 

1 7
Box Folder

“First Desegregation Step Gets Approval” 1963 June 1 

1 7

“Of Race, Rights and Reason” 1963 June 3 

1 7

“7 Charlotteans Meet with President Today” 1963 June 4 

1 7

“100 Businessmen, President Meet” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Committee Seeking Advice” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Young Negroes Demonstrate” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Charges Will Be Dropped On 1,400 Demonstrators” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“More Businesses In Durham Agree to Full Integration” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Negroes Fail at S&W, One Arrested at Krystal” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Action Set to Assure Equality: Hiring Policies to be Probed” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“More Racial Bars Fall in Durham” 1963 June 5 

1 7

“Negroes Declare Demonstrations will Continue: Prosecution of Paraders is Pledged” 1963 June 5 

1 7

Negro Leaders Halt City Demonstrating: Suspension Called Pending Meet of Interracial Group on Saturday” 1963 June 6 

1 7

“Citizens Unit Seeks Advice: Racial Peace Meeting Set” 1963 June 6 

1 7

“Community Leaders Are Called Together for Meeting Today” 1963 June 7 

1 7

“278 Arrested in Demonstration Here” 1963 June 7 

1 7

“7 More Businesses Drop Race Barriers” 1963 June 7 

1 7

“17 Year Segregation Law Taken off Books” 1963 June 8 

1 7

“Mayor Schenck Deserves Support” 1963 June 10 

1 7

“The Only Hope” 1963 June 10 

1 7

Clippings (photocopies) circa 1963 and undated 

1 8
Box Folder

“Kennedy Appeals to Southerners” 

1 8

“The Negro and the tax burden,” by McLellan Smith. 

1 8

“Passion to Rule Reason: Force to be Asked Against South” 

1 8

“Segregation Must End, Rally Told” 

1 8

“Total Desegregation Students’ Goal” 

1 8

“Ten City Area Restaurants Open Facilities to Negroes” undated 

1 8

“Ten Restaurants Drop Racial Bars” undated 

1 8

Clippings 1963 May 1-June 10 

2 1

Clippings circa 1963 and undated 

2 2

Clippings unrelated to segregation (photocopies) circa 1963 

2 3

Clippings unrelated to segregation circa 1963 

2 4

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