Truitt and Billings Family PapersTruitt and Billings Family Papers

Truitt and Billings Family Papers

Descriptive Summary

Title: Truitt and Billings Family Papers
Creator: Truitt, S. D. (Selvia Devanie), 1894-1975.
Dates: 1920-2008
Extent: 4.0 boxes (2.5 linear feet), including 58 photographs, 156 slides, and 1 sound recording
Collection Number: RBRL/187/TBF
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: The collection comprises the papers of S. D. Truitt (1894-1975) and family, and Ray Henry Billings (1922-1979) and family. It includes materials relating to S. D. Truitt’s career as county extension agent from 1917 to 1966, his acceptance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Superior Service Award in 1959 (including slides of the 1959 trip to Washington D.C. to accept the award) and items relating to the family’s friendships with several prominent Georgia politicians. Also included is material relating to Ray Henry Billings’ career as a communications engineer for the Atlanta Police Department. The collection includes awards, clippings, photographs, correspondence, color slides, and a scrapbook.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Selvia Devanie (S. D.) Truitt (1894-1975) was a county extension agent for Fulton County, Georgia. Born and raised in Whitesville in Harris County, Georgia, Truitt graduated from the Georgia A&M School in Carrolton in 1913, and attended the University of Georgia, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture in 1917. He began his career as County Extension Agent for Oconee County in September 1917, transferring to Hancock County in 1922 and serving as the County agent there for nine years. In July 1932, Truitt transferred to Fulton County and served there until taking an emeritus post in 1961 and then retiring in 1966. In 1958, S. D. received the Outstanding Leadership Achievement with Rural Youth Award from the American Hereford Association, and the next year was awarded the Superior Service Award by the United States Department of Agriculture. Truitt was heavily involved in community organizations such as the Tri-City Civitan Club, the Southeastern Fair Association, the Florence Crittendon Home, and 4-H. He also worked on promoting fire prevention. Truitt married Maria Cotton (1894-1997) and they had two daughters, Leila T. Grubbs (formerly Williams) (1922-) and Elizabeth T. Billings (1927-2010). In 1975, the city of College Park honored Truitt by renaming Camp Fulton for him.

Ray Henry Billings (1922-1979) was a communications engineer for the Atlanta Police Department and an amateur photographer. He was born in Vernon, Texas to Melford Ray Billings (1893-1969) and Louise Dorothy Frank Billings (1898-1964). Billings served in the 13th Fighter Squadron, United States Air Force. He married Elizabeth Truitt and the couple had four children, Truitt Ray (1949-2007), Maria Frieda (1951-), Henry Lee (1955-), and Raynette Leila (1957-). Upon completing his service in the Air Force, Billings attended Georgia Tech, graduating in 1950 with a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering. He took a job with the Ford Motor Company in Hapeville, and later became communications engineer with the Atlanta Police Department. He designed the Emergency 911 system for the city of Atlanta and worked with the Motorola Corporation to purchase the 911 towers for the system. Billings retired in 1978. Elizabeth taught school in Fulton County for 28 years.

Scope and Content

The collection comprises the papers of the S. D. Truitt family, and the Ray Henry Billings Family. It includes materials relating to S. D. Truitt’s career as a county extension agent from 1917 to 1966, his acceptance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Superior Service Award in 1959, the Truitt family’s involvement with a 4-H camp, slides of a 1959 trip to Washington D.C., and items relating to the family’s friendships with several prominent Georgia politicians. Included also are items relating to Ray Henry Billings’ career as a communications engineer for the Atlanta Police Department, Billings’ and son Henry’s involvement with Boy Scouts, and the premature birth of Maria Frieda Truitt. The collection includes awards, clippings, photographs, correspondence, color slides, and a scrapbook. Notable also are the bronze bull award that S. D. Truitt received from the American Hereford Association, and a pair of homemade Talmadge suspenders.

Organization and Arrangement

These papers are organized into four series: I. Truitt Family, II. Billings Family, III. Political Files, IV. Photographs, and V. Audiovisual Materials.


Administrative Information and Restrictions

Preferred Citation

Truitt and Billings Family Papers, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

User Restrictions

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Copyright Information

Before material from collections at the Richard B. Russell Library may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permissions. Persons wishing to quote from materials in the Russell Library collection should consult the Director. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared by Russell staff, 2010.


Related Materials

Access Points

4-H clubs--Georgia.
Audiovisual.
Billings, Ray Henry, 1922-1979.
Photographs.
Russell, Richard B., (Richard Brevard), 1897-1971
Talmadge, Herman E. (Herman Eugene), 1913-2002.
Truitt, S. D. (Selvia Devanie), 1894-1975.
United States--Agriculture.
United States. Extension Service

Related Collections in this Repository

Richard B. Russell, Jr. Collection

Herman E. Talmadge Collection

Lester G. Maddox Biographical File

Clifford Hodges Brewton Collection of Lester G. Maddox Speech/Press Research Files

Thomas Gresham Collection of Lester Maddox Speech/Press Files

Related Collections in Other Repositories

Ray Billings Photographs, Atlanta History Center


Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

 

I. Truitt Family

Scope and Content: The bulk of this series comprises clippings, nomination documents, and correspondence related to S. D. Truitt’s 1959 acceptance of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Superior Service Award. Included also are clippings related to Truitt’s service as County Extension Agent for Fulton County, S. D. and Maria Truitt’s involvement with the 4-H Camp in Fulton County, and obituaries and honors for both S. D. and Maria Truitt.
BoxFolder
11Card from Progress Hotel, Norfolk, Virginia, 1907
12S. D. Truitt, Maria Truitt, clipping from Oconee Enterprise. Picture of Truitts as counselors at 4-H Boys Camp at Snow’s Mill, circa 1920, 1963 May 23
13S. D. Truitt, Superior Service Award, University of Georgia Agricultural Extension Press Release, 1959 May 28
14S. D. Truitt, Superior Service Award, nomination documents, 1959
15S. D. Truitt, Honor Awards Ceremony Program, Washington DC, 1959 May
16Letters of recommendation for S. D. Truitt, Superior Service Award, 1958
17S. D. Truitt, awards and honors, clippings, 1947-1995
18S. D. Truitt, award certificates, 1938-1971
19S. D. Truitt, clippings, County Extension Service, business cards, membership cards, 1954-1934
110S. D. Truitt, obituaries, memorials, death certificate (copy), 1975
111Maria Truitt, clippings, awards, obituaries, 1952-1997
112The Bulletin, First Baptist Church, College Park, GA, contribution in honor of Maria Truitt, 1994 November 15
113Letter to Maria Truitt from Willard Scott, NBC News, Congratulations on 100th birthday, 1994
114John A. Williams, clipping, Last Rites for Col. Williams held Aug 4, 1968 August 7
BoxFolder
21Bull Award, presented to S. D. Truitt in recognition of Outstanding Leadership and Achievement with Rural Youth by the American Hereford Association, 1959 October 19
Box
4Scrapbook, Those attending the dinner in honor of "Sid" Truitt, 1947 May 28
Box
OS1Diplomas, S. D. Truitt, UGA bachelors of science and Fourth District A & M School, 1913, 1931
 

II. Billings Family

Scope and Content: The bulk of this series is composed of clippings related to Ray Henry Billings’ work on a new 911 system for the Atlanta Police Department. Included also are materials related to Billings’ graduation from Georgia Tech in 1950, Billings’ and son Henry’s involvement with the College Park First Baptist Boy Scout Troop 135, and the premature birth of Maria Frieda Billings in 1951.
BoxFolder
115Ray Billings, biographical statement, Office of Dean of Students, Georgia Tech, 1949
116Ray Billings, Georgia Tech commencement book, Bachelor of Electrical Engineering, 1950
117Maria Frieda Billings, clippings, premature birth, 1951, 1958
118Ray Billings and Elizabeth Truitt Billings, John Foster Dulles funeral announcement, Senate Chamber pass, 1959 May 25, 27
119Ray Billings, Henry Billings, College Park 1st Baptist Boy Scout Troop 135, clipping and church bulletin, 1969, 1971
120Ray Billings, City of Atlanta Police Communications system, 1971
121Henry Billings, clipping, Georgia-Georgia Tech Freshman football game, 1973 November 21
122Elizabeth Truitt Billings, Letter to Eric Stipe about the future of Camp Truitt, 2006 February 1
123Rebecca Billings, clippings from Oconee Leader, mission trip, 4-H scholarship, 2008 November 6
124Truitt/Billings family tree, undated
Box
4Communications News, vol. 11, no. 6 [includes article on 911 system], 1974 June
 

III. Political

Scope and Content: This series consists of correspondence between the Truitt and Billings families and several prominent Georgia politicians, including Richard Russell, Lester Maddox, and Herman Talmadge. It also includes a collection of items relating to the death of Virginia Maddox. Also of note are four letters from notable figures, including Walter Cronkite, about the value of learning Latin.
BoxFolder
125Richard Russell, thank you letter to Ray Billings and Elizabeth Truitt Billings, 1948 January 6
126Richard Russell, clipping, bid for the Democratic nomination, 1952
127Richard Russell, program, the Great American Awards Dinner, 1966 December 28
128Richard Russell, the Great American Awards invitation, dinner card, 1966 December 28
129Thank you correspondence between Richard Russell and S. D. and Maria Truitt, 1967-1971
130Richard Russell, program, unveiling of memorial monument, 1975 February 14
131Richard Russell stamps, 2, 1984
132Herman Talmadge, correspondence, 1935-1974
133Herman Talmadge, clipping, Southside Sun, Forest Park Fire Prevention Parade, 1968 October 10
134Lester Maddox and Virginia Maddox, honors and memorials, 1999
135Letters from Westover High School students to politicians and celebrities about the value of learning Latin, 1974-1975
Box
3Red suspenders with "Talmadge" embroidered, undated
 

IV. Photographs

Scope and Content: This series includes photographs of S. D. and Maria Truitt at the Superior Service Award, photographs of Ray Billings and son Henry Billings with their Boy Scout Troop, 156 color slides on a variety of subjects, including S. D. and Maria Truitt’s 1959 trip to Washington D.C., the 4-H Camp, and baby Maria Billings.
BoxFolder
136S. D. and Maria Truitt, 1950s.
Extent: 2 (5x7”) b/w
137Camp Truitt (4-H), 1950s, 1961.
Extent: 1 (4x5”) b/w, 1 (3.5x5”) color
138S. D. Truitt and Herman Talmadge, undated.
Extent: 5 (4x5”) b/w
139S. D. Truitt, Superior Service Award acceptance, 1959.
Extent: 2 (8x9.5”) b/w
140S. D. Truitt, in office, 1959, April.
Extent: 2 (8x10”) b/w
141S. D. Truitt, with unidentified man, examining cotton, undated.
Extent: 1 (8x10”) b/w
142S. D. Truitt, photograph for Atlanta Journal-Constitution, 1960 October 2.
Extent: 1 (5.7”) b/w
143Ray Billings and Henry Billings, Boy Scout Camp, 1968 May 3-4.
Extent: Negatives b/w
144S. D. Truitt and Maria Truitt, undated.
Extent: 11 (9.5x8”) b/w, 3 (10x8”) color, 1 (5x7”) color, 1 (4.5”) color
145Maria Truitt, 100th birthday celebrations, 1994 October 25
Extent: 6 (3x5”) color, 1 (8x10) color
146Unveiling of Virginia Maddox Portrait, Georgia Capitol Building, Lester and Virginia Maddox Bridge, 1999
Extent: 22 (4x6”) color, 35mm b/w
Box
3Family, S. D., Maria, Elizabeth, Leila, 1950s
Extent: 17 color slides
3S. D. and Maria Truitt in Washington, D. C. for award ceremony, 1959
Extent: 75 color slides
3Georgia Capitol, flower show (Hugh and Margaret Rupersburg), 1960 April
Extent: 10 color slides
3Truitt family swimming at 4-H Camp, 1969 June
Extent: 34 color slides
3Truitt family, 1970s
Extent: 7 color slides
3Maria Billings
Extent: 4 color slides
34-H Camp
Extent: 13 color slides
3Maria and S. D. Truitt, 1960s
Extent: 10 color slides
3S. D. and Maria Truitt
Extent: negatives
Box
4S. D. Truitt portrait, undated
 

V. Audiovisual Materials

Extent: 1.0 sound recording
Conditions Governing Access note: 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.
item
RBRL187TBF-RR_0001Tommy Irvin Agriculture Commissioner Radio Ads, circa 1960s
Extent: 1.0 sound recording
Box
RR 0072 RBRL187TBF-RR_0001 original media, 1960s