Clifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Series III: AudiovisualClifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Series III: Audiovisual

Clifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Series III: Audiovisual

Descriptive Summary

Title: Clifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Series III: Audiovisual
Creator: Maddox, Lester G., 1915-2003.
Dates: 1964-1976
Extent: 26.0 items
Collection Number: RBRL/051/CHBLM
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: The collection consists of materials collected by Reverend Clifford H. Brewton relating to Lester Maddox's terms as governor (1967-1971) and lieutenant governor (1971-1975), as well as his 1966 gubernatorial and 1968 campaigns. Brewton collected the materials for the purpose of writing a biography of Maddox, although it was never published. Audiovisual materials in the collection supplement the paper materials documenting Maddox’s term as governor of Georgia and his subsequent campaigns for president of the United States in 1968 and for lieutenant governor of Georgia in 1970. Included among the four audiocassettes and 22 reels of ¼” audiotape are recordings of several campaign commercials for radio broadcast for both campaigns and speeches delivered for public events and private organizations throughout Georgia in his official capacity of governor.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Lester G. Maddox was born in Atlanta, Georgia, on September 30, 1915, to Dean and Flonnie Maddox. He was educated in the Fulton County public school system but dropped out of high school in order to pursue a career (either “to start working” or “to pursue a career in something”). In 1936, he married Virginia Cox and the couple eventually had four children. In 1944, Maddox opened a short order grill in Atlanta that he sold a year later at a profit. Maddox continued to hold jobs in the grocery business and real estate until 1947 when he opened a restaurant, the Pickrick. Maddox achieved great success with the Pickrick and expanded it nine times over the course of fifteen years. His business was bolstered by clever advertisements, entitled “Pickrick Says,” that ran in Atlanta newspapers. After the 1954 Brown vs. the Board of Education school desegregation ruling Maddox’s advertisements became more political, earning him greater notoriety.

Maddox’s outspoken response to desegregation led him to enter politics. In 1957, he campaigned for mayor of Atlanta as an independent, anti-integrationist candidate. Maddox lost the election. Four years later, in 1961, he once again lost his bid for the mayor’s office. Maddox faced his third defeat in 1962, after running for lieutenant governor. Although his campaigns were not successful, they made him a well-known figure in Georgia.

It was Maddox’s open defiance of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 that thrust him into the national spotlight. Not only did Maddox refuse to serve three black students in his restaurant, but he also chased them out with a gun while his customers wielded axe handles. He contended that both his business and property were being threatened. The students sued Maddox. The court ruled that Maddox had to desegregate the Pickrick within twenty days. Rather than accept the ruling and integrate his restaurant, Maddox closed the Pickrick.

In October 1965, he announced that he would seek the Democratic nomination for governor. True to his reputation, Maddox ran a grassroots campaign whose platform supported segregation and opposed federal encroachment on state and individual rights. Maddox came in second to Ellis Arnall in the Democratic primary and defeated Arnall in the runoff. In the General Election, the Republican candidate, Howard “Bo” Callaway, received more votes but fell short of the majority due to a write-in campaign for Arnall. The election was, therefore, sent to the General Assembly, which elected Maddox on the first ballot. The new governor was sworn in on 10 January 1967.

It was during Maddox’s term that the newly independent legislature came to dominate the state government. They found in their governor an executive who believed in legislative independence. However, Maddox was able to increase funding for the university system as well as state teachers salaries. He attempted to raise money for state education, welfare and mental health with a one-cent sales tax, but could not push it through the state legislature. Maddox succeeded in passing funding for much needed prison reforms which included upgrading fire and health standards, training for guards, and improved living conditions and treatment for inmates.

While Maddox appointed many African Americans during his term in office, he did not give any of them positions of great power or responsibility. He continued to be an outspoken opponent of school desegregation as well as busing. He encouraged private segregated schools and favored freedom of choice in schools rather than strict segregation. Maddox was a staunch supporter of the U.S. war in Vietnam because he feared expansion of communism abroad. At home he continued to warn Georgians of the ever-present threat of communist and socialist influences.

On August 17, 1968, Maddox announced that he would seek the Democratic nomination for president, but withdrew before any ballots were cast. He resigned rather than compromise on the number of African-American delegates from Georgia. In 1970, Maddox once again gained national attention. While in Washington, D.C., testifying against the strengthening of the Voting Rights Bill, Maddox passed out souvenir axe handles in a U.S. House of Representatives restaurant. This led to a confrontation between the governor and an African-American congressman from Michigan, Charles Diggs, Jr.

Since the Georgia constitution barred him from seeking consecutive terms as governor, Maddox was unable to run for that office again. He attempted to have the law overturned, but was unsuccessful. In order to remain in politics, Maddox ran for lieutenant governor and won in 1970, making him the first former governor to become lieutenant governor. During his term Maddox clashed regularly with Governor Jimmy Carter, whom he felt was too liberal. In 1974, he ran against George Busbee for governor and lost. Maddox continued to be active in politics and in 1976, the former governor ran for president as the American Independent Party candidate. Many saw his campaign as an expression of his opposition to and dissatisfaction with his political rival, Jimmy Carter, also a candidate for president in 1976. Maddox lost this election as well, receiving only 170,000 votes. After this campaign, Maddox stayed out of politics until 1990, when he made his last bid for political office. On January 25, 1990, he made a formal announcement from the State Capitol that he would once again run for governor of Georgia. Maddox ran a small, grass-roots campaign and lost the Democratic primary with only three percent of the vote.

After exiting from the political scene, Maddox spent most of his time at home in Marietta, Georgia, caring for his wife, Virginia, who died on June 24, 1997. Lester Maddox died in an Atlanta hospice on June 25, 2003.

Scope and Content

Audiovisual materials in the collection supplement the paper materials documenting Maddox’s term as governor of Georgia and his subsequent campaigns for president of the United States in 1968 and for lieutenant governor of Georgia in 1970. Included among the four audiocassettes and 22 reels of ¼” audiotape are recordings of several campaign commercials for radio broadcast for both campaigns and speeches delivered for public events and private organizations throughout Georgia in his official capacity of governor.

Organization and Arrangement

Clifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Series III: Audiovisual is arranged by format.


Administrative Information and Restrictions

Access Restrictions

Though the collection is open for research, reference copies of the audiovisual recordings are available upon request. Research requests will be filled as soon as possible and will be dependent upon the condition of the recordings.

Preferred Citation

Clifford H. Brewton Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Records, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

Copyright Information

It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain permission to reproduce material for publication. Persons wishing to reproduce materials in the Russell Library collections should consult the Director. Reproduction or quotation of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared by Russell staff, 2011.


Related Materials

Access Points

Brewton, Clifford Hodges
Carter, Jimmy, 1924-
Georgia--Politics and government--1951-
Georgia. Office of the Lieutenant Governor.
Governors--Georgia--Election.
Maddox, Lester G., 1915-2003.
Press releases.
Speeches.

Related Collections in this Repository

John B. Morris Papers

George L. Smith II Papers

Howard H. (Bo) Callaway Collection

Harold Paulk (Hal) Henderson, Sr. Oral History Collection

Alvan S. Arnall Collection of Ellis G. Arnall Materials

Zell Miller Papers

Larry Walker Papers


Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

 

III. Audiovisual

Extent: 26.0 items
Scope and Content: Audiovisual materials in the collection supplement the paper materials documenting Maddox’s term as governor of Georgia and his subsequent campaigns for president of the United States in 1968 and for lieutenant governor of Georgia in 1970. Included among the four audiocassettes and 22 reels of ¼” audiotape are recordings of several campaign commercials for radio broadcast for both campaigns and speeches delivered for public events and private organizations throughout Georgia in his official capacity of governor.
Boxitem
RR 0051AVA 93-01Radio Spots of G. Paul Jones [Campaign '66], 11/10/1966
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
Boxitem
RR 0052AVA 93-02[Contents unknown]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-03One of first news conferences
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-04Maddox for President '68
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-05[Contents unknown]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-06[Aug. Retail Merchants - Ad Lib?]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-07Maddox at Bob Jones University
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-08Maddox speech [Tulsa]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-09[22 Radio spots?]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-10[22 Radio spots?]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-11[Tax Conference]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-12[Radio spot or Address to Dale Carnegie Club, Columbus, GA], 12/13/1968
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-13Christian Business Men's Comm., Macon, 11/04/1967
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-14Maddox, Spartanburg, South Carolina
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-15[Contents unknown]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-163rd District Softball Tournament, Waycross, Georgia, 07/31/1967
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-17Youth Rally, Jonesboro, Georgia
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-18[From William Collins of Augusta, Georgia]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-19[Maddox for Lt. Governor 60-second radio spot or McIntire Rally, Washington, D.C.]
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-20Maddox in South Carolina
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-21Cass[ette] - Pop music
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
RR 0052AVA 93-22Maddox - New Jersey
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
Boxitem
CS 0089AVA 93-23Lester Maddox, 05/20/1973
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
CS 0089AVA 93-24Civitan Clergy Day, Gainesville, Georgia, 01/30/1970
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
CS 0089AVA 93-25Police Academy; Galilean Baptist Church
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.
CS 0089AVA 93-26Clay Statement, 08/13/1970
Conditions Governing Access note: Resource may be used under the guidelines described by the U.S. Copyright Office in Section 107, Title 17, United States Code (Fair use). Parties interested in production or commercial use of the resources should contact the Russell Library for a fee schedule.