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North Carolina School Desegregation Papers

Filing title: 
North Carolina School Desegregation Papers

Inventory of the North Carolina school desegregation papers
MS0413

Summary Information

Repository
J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, UNC Charlotte
Creator
J. Murrey Atkins Library (University of North Carolina at Charlotte).
Title
North Carolina school desegregation papers
ID
MS0413
Date [inclusive]
1955-1956
Extent
1.0 Linear inches
Language
English
Abstract
The North Carolina School Desegregation Papers, 1955-1956 (mss 413), is a small collection (one folder) of mostly published material, generated by the faction that was opposed to the racial desegregation of public schools. The source of this material is not known.

Preferred Citation note

North Carolina School Desegregation Papers. J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections, University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

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Biographical/Historical note

In the history of the civil rights movement in the United States, a land-mark legal case that ushered in an era of change was the historic Brown v. Board of Education case, in 1954. The Supreme Court decreed that schools that were said to be “separate but equal” were inherently unequal; and directed public schools to integrate racially “with all deliberate speed.” Nevertheless, there was resistance to this decision throughout the country. In North Carolina, political and educational leaders formed committees to discuss the Supreme Court’s ruling and its requirement to integrate public schools. Groups, such as the Patriots of North Carolina, Incorporated, organized to denounce the court ruling and to revive the traditional Southern notion of “states’ rights.” The first course of action taken by the governor of North Carolina, William B. Umstead, was to instruct the University of North Carolina’s Institute of Government to study the ways in which the court ruling would affect North Carolina public schools. The Institute issued a report, saying that the state and the local public schools could take any of three courses of action: resistance (either passive resistance or open defiance), unquestioning acceptance, or delaying as much as possible. After receiving the Institute’s report, Governor Ulmstead appointed an advisory committee to establish a policy that would “preserve the State public school system by having the support of the people.” This committee later reported “that the mixing of the races forthwith in the public schools throughout the state cannot be accomplished and should not be attempted.” This committee also recommended that the establishment of another committee (a permanent one) to continue studying the issue, and that the legislature should pass a statute that would transfer the authority of student enrollment and school and classroom assignment from the state to local school systems. Governor Umstead died in the fall of 1954 and Luther H. Hodges was sworn in to take his place. The new governor endorsed this committee’s report, and in following its recom-mendation for a continuing advisory committee, established the Pearsall Committee, led by Thomas Pearsall, to continue studying the issue. One of the published reports of the Pearsall Committee is in this collection. Ultimately, the Pearsall Committee acknowledged that North Carolina and its school systems would have to acquiesce to the Supreme Court’s ruling, though in its reports it offered strongly worded phrases of resentment aimed at the Court and at the idea of desegregation. (Bagwell 86-88, 94-95) Full integration of public schools in North Carolina did not come quickly, easily or without conflict, though it was accomplished over time.

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Scope and Contents note

The North Carolina School Desegregation Papers, 1955-1956 (mss 413), is a small collection (one folder) of mostly published material, generated by factions opposed to the racial desegregation of public schools. The source of these materials is not known.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of North Carolina at Charlotte University Archives 2009

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

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

Purchased from Bartleby’s Books in July 2009.

Processing Information note

Processed by Robert A. McInnes

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Related Materials

Related Archival Materials note

Charles A. McLean Papers, Mss 250 ; Irwin Avenue Open School Records, Mss 356 ; Louise Woods Papers, Mss 369 ; Ros Mickelson Papers, Mss 378 ; Charlotte City Board of Education Records, Mss 1 ; E. K. Fretwell Papers, Mss 200 ; Kathlee Cox Hicks Papers, Mss 173 ; Louise A. Lawing Papers, Mss 122 ; Mecklenburg County Board of Education Records, Mss 2 ; Margaret Whitton Ray Papers, Mss 131 ; Harry Golden Collection, Mss 20.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education.

Subject(s)

  • Race discrimination--North Carolina
  • School integration--North Carolina--Charlotte--History
  • School integration--North Carolina--Mecklenburg County
  • Segregation in education--North Carolina

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Collection Inventory

Folder

Patriots of North Carolina, Inc., “Dear friend…” undated

1

Patriots of North Carolina, Inc., To: Members of the North Carolina Legislature and other State Officials. undated

1

The Pearsall Plan to Save Our Schools. undated

1

Associates and Helpers of NAACP are Busy at the Urging the Mixing of Colored and White Races in Schools and Churches. undated

1

Address by Governor Luther H. Hodges 1955 August 8

1

The Field Foundation; Article by Sherman Griswold. 1956

1

Racial Struggle Affects Church-State Relations. 1956 March

Scope and Contents note

Church and State: A Monthly review, Vol. 9, No. 3.

1

North Carolina Public School Bulletin. 1956 March

1

[Press release] From the Governor’s Office. 1956 March 2

1

NCEA New Bulletin, Vol. IX, No. 5. 1956 April

1

Luther H. Hodges; Dear Friend and Fellow Democrat. Attachment: “The Segregation Problem in the Public Schools of North Carolina: Summary of Statements and Actions by Governor Luther H. Hodges.” 1956 April 10

1

“Let’s Use Christianity to Solve the Race Problem in our Schools,” by Dr. Clarence Poe. 1956 May

1

“Incidentally,” by Nell Battle Lewis. 1956 May 13

1

Proclamation by the Governor [Luther H. Hodges]. 1956 June 19

1

Address by Governor Luther H. Hodges before Joint Session of the general Assembly of North Carolina, Meeting in Special Session. 1956 July 23

1

Report of the North Carolina Advisory Committee on Education. 1956 July 23

1

“To the Members [of the] North Carolina General Assembly” by Governor Luther H. Hodges. 1956 August 3

1