Armour v. Nix Case FilesArmour v. Nix Case Files

Armour v. Nix Case Files

Descriptive Summary

Title: Armour v. Nix Case Files
Creator: Sams, Gary
Creator: Weekes & Candler, P.C.
Dates: 1940-1979
Dates: Bulk, 1975-1979
Extent: 2.0 boxes (1.5 linear feet)
Collection Number: RBRL/403
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: Armour v. Nix, litigated from 1972 to 1980, challenged school segregation in the metropolitan Atlanta area. The case files include depositions, compliance reports, correspondence, and research on factors influencing racial patterns in housing, the use of busing to desegregate schools, and population changes in metropolitan areas.

Collection Description

Historical Note

Armour v. Nix was filed in the U.S. District Court in 1972 after the DeKalb County Board of Education was ordered to desegregate its schools in Pitts v. Cherry in 1969. The plaintiffs, African American parents of children attending schools in the metropolitan Atlanta area, filed a class action on behalf of themselves and all other individuals experiencing negative effects from the lack of integration in the school system. The plaintiffs argued that the school system should be integrated and petitioned the court for an “interdistrict remedy” that would integrate the metropolitan area once and for all. The plaintiffs named a number of local school districts as defendants in the case, including the Buford, Clayton, Cobb, Decatur, DeKalb, Douglas, Fulton, Gwinnett, and Marietta County Boards of Education, the Atlanta Board of Education, and the State Board of Education.

The trial was “bifurcated,” meaning the trial court judge decided to break the case into a number of subparts and hear the claims in phases. During phase 1 of the case, the court considered liability. In 1978, the trial court dismissed the claims against the Buford, Clayton, Cobb, Decatur, Douglas, Gwinnett, and Marietta Boards of Education.

In the second phase of the trial, heard in 1979, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia held that the plaintiffs failed to show that there were existing disparities in racial composition of the defendant schools systems. The court noted that the evidence neither shows an “alteration of county or municipal boundaries for the purpose of racial segregation, nor does it show that any new school districts have been created for the purpose of increasing racial segregation.” Rather, the court stated that existing instances of segregation were minimal, a result of practices within the school district, as opposed to statewide or interdistrict policy, and due to external community factors, such as where minority students lived in proximity to schools. Lastly, the court found that the plaintiffs presented no evidence proving that the defendant school districts showed an intent to discriminate in the years after they were desegregated. Thus, no interdistrict remedy was justified; the plaintiffs lost their claims.

This case was appealed to a federal appellate court, and the decision of the district court was affirmed in 1980, ending the litigation.

Scope and Content

The Armour v. Nix Case Files include depositions of expert witnesses and county officials, desegregation compliance reports of the DeKalb County School System, articles and reports, and correspondence. Subjects include factors influencing racial patterns in housing, the use of busing to desegregate schools, and studies of population changes in metropolitan areas.


Administrative Information and Restrictions

Conditions Governing Access note

This collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation note

Armour v. Nix Case Files, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

These files were removed from the DeKalb County School Desegregation Case Files (RBRL/056/DCDF) during processing in 2016 and made their own collection because the donor Gary Sams, through conversations and in the deed of gift, indicated that Armour v. Nix is distinct from the sequence of litigation documented in the DeKalb County School Desegregation Case Files.

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.

Conditions Governing Use note

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared by Adriane Hanson, July 2016.


Related Materials

Access Points

Armour v. Nix
Busing for school integration--Georgia.
Discrimination in housing.
Race discrimination.
School integration--Georgia.

Related Collections in this Repository

DeKalb County School Desegregation Case Files

American Civil Liberties Union of Georgia Records


Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

BoxFolder
11Deposition of Dr. David Armour, undated
12Depositions of James W. Buechler, Phillip Hammer, R.K. Regan, David L. Smotherland, Robert A. Thompson, 1975
13DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Examination of Dr. Armour), 1972-1978
14DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour vs. Nix- Plaintiff's Appeal of September 24, 1979 Order in the Fifth Circuit Court), 1979
15DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour vs. Nix- Plaintiff's Appeal of September 24, 1979 Order in the Supreme Court), 1979
16["Black Ghetto"/Racial Impact on Where Can Live], undated
17DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Sociological Articles), 1940-1970
18DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Bus Utilization), 1954-1975
19DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Compliance Report), 1975
110DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Conclusions of Law), undated
111DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - Plaintiffs Proposed Conclusions of Law), 1977
112DeKalb County Board of Education (Armour v. Nix - General Correspondence), 1977-1978
113[School Segregation], 1973-1974
114The American Journal of Sociology - The University of Chicago Press, 1964
115School Segregation in Metropolitan Areas - The National Institute of Education, 1977
116Model School Board Codes: School Employee Dismissal Forms, Student Conduct and Discipline, 1975
117Wayne Law Review, 1975
118Your Child and Busing, undated
1191975 Population and Housing: Age, Race, Sex Estimates, 1975
BoxFolder
21"Human Intelligence" - edited by J. McVicker Hunter, 1971
22"The Future of the Metropolis: People, Jobs, Income" - edited by Eli Gizberg, 1974
23A Quarter Century of Education in the DeKalb School System 1947-1972, 1972
24"Local Community Fact Book Chicago Metropolitan Area 1960" - edited by Evelyn M. Kitagawa and Karl E. Taueber, 1960