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Robert S. Rankin papers, 1957-1973 67.6 Linear Feet — 17,000 Items

Robert S. Rankin was a professor of Political Science at Duke University and member of the United States Commission on Civil Rights. Collection documents Rankin's work on the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, 1960-1973 and consists of agendas and minutes for the monthly meetings of the commission, 1959-1973, and material on special meetings; memoranda, correspondence, statements, and news clippings dealing with the operational aspects of the commission; background studies; transcripts of proceedings; news clippings from fact finding investigations, 1960-1973; statements of commissioners; and transcripts of testimony before congressional committees. The commission's areas of study included education, employment, political participation, housing and urban development, administration of justice, public accommodations, health and welfare, federal programs, minority groups, federal enforcement, and civil liberties and human rights.

Collection documents Rankin's work on the U.S. Civil Rights Commission, 1960-1973 and consists of agendas and minutes for the monthly meetings of the commission, 1959-1973, and material on special meetings; memoranda, correspondence, statements, and news clippings dealing with the operational aspects of the commission; background studies; transcripts of proceedings; news clippings from fact finding investigations, 1960-1973; statements of commissioners; and transcripts of testimony before congressional committees. The commission's areas of study included education, employment, political participation, housing and urban development, administration of justice, public accommodations, health and welfare, federal programs, minority groups, federal enforcement, and civil liberties and human rights.

An addition (2001-0047) contains 27 loose black-and-white prints and 2 binders containing 89 black-and-white prints, as well as 35 items of correspondence (1963-1977) relating to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights. Includes group pictures of the commissioners and other political figures (1960-1969) and photographs from the National Conference on Equal Opportunity in Federally Assisted Programs (1965) and an Open Hearing in Jackson, Mississippi (1965). The open hearing includes a list of witnesses. Those represented in the photographs include Burke Marshall, Hubert H. Humphrey, Robert F. Kennedy, Sheriff Jack Purvis, Charles Evers, Aaron Henry, Spottswood Robinson, and Roy Wilkins.

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The William Henry Chafe Oral History Collection spans the years 1933 through 1988, with most of the materials dated between 1972 and 1978. The collection consists mainly of oral history interview tapes and transcripts, but also includes interview notes and research files related to Chafe's book Civilities and Civil Rights: Greensboro, North Carolina, and the Black Struggle for Freedom.

The William Henry Chafe Oral History Collection spans the years 1933 through 1988, with most of the materials dated between 1972 and 1978. The collection consists mainly of oral history interview tapes and transcripts, but also includes interview notes and research files related to Chafe's book Civilities and Civil Rights: Greensboro, North Carolina, and the Black Struggle for Freedom.

The interview tapes and transcripts (1972-1978, undated), which comprise the bulk of the collection, include interviews with government officials, participants in the North Carolina civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, and opponents of the movement, including members of the Ku Klux Klan. The few research files in the collection include statistical data related to Greensboro elections (1930s-1950s), notes from the Joan Bluethenthal papers and a report by the North Carolina State Advisory Committee to the United States Commission on Civil Rights on civil disturbances at Dudley High School and North Carolina A&T State University in Greensboro, North Carolina in 1969.

The Audiotapes Series consists of two identical sets (one for preservation, one for use by researchers) of twenty-eight tapes containing oral history interviews. The Printed Material Series includes transcripts and/or notes on 67 oral history interviews, and three research files related to the civil rights movement and local politics in Greensboro.

Beyond the direct oral history materials, there is also a Writings and Research Series. It includes research notes for several chapters of Chafe's book in addition to newspaper clippings addressing topics such as Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination and the return of black veterans from the Vietnam War; an assortment of documents regarding the Black Panther Party collected by the Federal Bureau of Investigations' Counter Intelligence Program, and a number of publications produced by other authors. While the materials predominately relate to Greensboro, this series also includes information on civil rights activity in Durham, Chapel Hill, and the Research Triangle at large. The Photographs Series includes fourteen undated photographs.

William H. Chafe's book, Civilities and Civil Rights: Greensboro, North Carolina, and the Black Struggle for Freedom, chronicles the continuing conflict over desegregation in Greensboro in the 1950s and 1960s. Chafe explores the "progressive mystique" that defined the terms of culturally-sanctioned behavior, looking at how civility served to preserve the South's racial order. Within this context, he discusses the city's reaction to the Supreme Court's landmark decision in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954, the Greensboro sit-in movement begun by four college students at North Carolina A&T College in 1960, and the emergence of the Black Power Movement in the late 1960s.