Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 000-07 Bob Short on the three governors controversyReflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 000-07 Bob Short on the three governors controversy

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 000-07 Bob Short on the three governors controversy

Descriptive Summary

Title: Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 000-07 Bob Short on the three governors controversy
Creator: Short, Charles Robert, 1932-
Dates: 2007
Extent: 1.0 interview
Collection Number: RBRL/220/ROGP
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: In this interview Bob Short discusses the Three Governors Controversy. Short worked in various capacities in the administrations of Georgia governors Marvin Griffin, Ernest Vandiver, and Carl Sanders, served as the coordinator for President Jimmy Carter’s 1966 campaign for governor of Georgia, and was press secretary for Governor Lester Maddox in 1967 and 1968.

Collection Description

Biographical note

Charles Robert “Bob” Short was born in Clayton, Georgia on April 17, 1932 and educated at Young Harris College, Georgia Southern University and the Woodrow Wilson College of Law. Upon discharge from the Air Force in 1956 he began his career as a sports writer for the Atlanta Journal, and then served in various capacities in the administrations of Georgia Governors Marvin Griffin, Ernest Vandiver, and Carl Sanders. Short coordinated the campaign of President Jimmy Carter when Carter ran for governor of Georgia in 1966, and then worked as press secretary for Carter's opponent in that race, Governor Lester Maddox, in 1967 and 1968. In 1968 he was appointed regional director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness -- the forerunner of FEMA-- by President Lyndon B. Johnson. Entering the private sector in the early 1970s, Short worked for Hoffman LaRoche and Hospital Corporation of America, and for his own firm, Investmart, Inc., a marketing consulting business. Short remained active politically, consulting on a limited scale and serving as special assistant to Governor and Senator Zell Miller and Senator Johnny Isakson. Retired to Blairsville, Georgia, Short wrote the only biography of Lester Maddox, Everything is Pickrick (Mercer University Press, 1999), which won for him the title "Author of the Year" from the Georgia Writers Association. In 2006 he began a lecture and discussion program at neighboring Young Harris College entitled Reflections on Georgia Politics, and then partnered with the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies to make Reflections an oral history series.

Scope and Content

Bob Short discusses the Three Governors Controversy of 1946, a dispute over the successor to Georgia Governor-elect Eugene Talmadge in the wake of his death. Short describes how Ellis Arnall, Herman Talmadge, and Melvin E. Thompson, along with their supporters, each make their cases for their rightful position as governor. Melvin E. Thompson took the office in 1947 following a Georgia Supreme Court decision. Short also discusses the aftermath of the decision, including its effect on the careers of those involved and how it characterized Georgia politics during this era.


Administrative Information and Restrictions

Custodial History note

Reflections on Georgia Politics began in the fall of 2006 at Young Harris College, as a lecture and discussion program hosted by Georgia political veteran Bob Short. In late 2007, the Richard B. Russell Library began producing the program as an oral history video series to further illuminate and personalize the tectonic shifts that occurred in Georgia politics in the late twentieth century.

Preferred citation

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 000-07, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

Copyright Information

All rights reserved. Resources 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.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared by Russell staff, 2013.


Related Materials

Access Points

Arnall, Ellis Gibbs, 1907-1992.
Georgia--Supreme Court.
Governors--Georgia--Election--1946.
Oral histories.
Talmadge, Eugene, 1884-1946.
Talmadge, Herman E. (Herman Eugene), 1913-2002.
Thompson, M. E. (Melvin Ernest), 1903-1980.

Related Collections in this Repository

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection

M. E. Thompson Papers


Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

ROGP 000-07 Bob Short video, 2007 (Extent: 29.0 minutes ) Access Online