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Alphabetical List of Oral History Interview Topics


Browse Collection by Theme

  Race and Civil Rights
    WHITE RESPONSES TO CHANGE
      Political Responses

Results (most relevant first)

Oral History Interview with Raymond Dawson, February 4, 1991. Interview L-0133. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Former Vice President of Academic Affairs at the University of North Carolina, Raymond Dawson, discusses tensions surrounding federal desegregation orders in North Carolina during the 1970s. Because of North Carolina's comparatively large number of historically black colleges, the state became a testing ground for the federal government to explore ways to integrate public education while preserving historically black colleges.

Oral History Interview with James P. Coleman, September 5, 1990. Interview A-0338. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Former attorney general and governor of Mississippi James P. Coleman discusses his role in southern politics from the 1930s through the 1960s. Coleman focuses specifically on the issue of racial segregation and its impact on Mississippi politics.

Oral History Interview with Angus Boaz Thompson Sr., October 21, 2003. Interview U-0017. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
An African American activist fights for integration in Lumberton, North Carolina.

Oral History Interview with Julius L. Chambers, June 18, 1990. Interview L-0127. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Julius Chambers served on the UNC Board of Governors from 1972 to 1977. He recalls the tensions between the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare's federal objectives and the University of North Carolina Board officials' control over the desegregation process at post-secondary educational institutions.

Oral History Interview with Claude Pepper, February 1, 1974. Interview A-0056. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Claude Pepper reflects on his political career and the rise of conservatism in Florida.

Oral History Interview with Floyd B. McKissick Sr., December 6, 1973. Interview A-0134. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Civil rights activist Floyd McKissick evaluates the legacies of the civil rights movement and looks toward its next phase in the 1970s.

Oral History Interview with Barry Nakell, October 1, 2003. Interview U-0012. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
A lawyer argues for Native American civil rights in Robeson County, North Carolina.

Oral History Interview with Orval Faubus, June 14, 1974. Interview A-0031. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Orval Faubus defends his legacy.

Oral History Interview with Elizabeth Pearsall, May 25, 1988. Interview C-0056. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Elizabeth Pearsall reflects on the role of her husband, Thomas Pearsall, in the North Carolina school desegregation plan. She also discusses her own efforts at fostering racial cooperation.

Oral History Interview with John Lewis, November 20, 1973. Interview A-0073. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
John Lewis served as the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) from 1963 to 1966. In this interview, Lewis outlines his role within the civil rights movement through his participation in the sit-in movement of 1960 in Nashville, the Freedom Rides through Alabama and Mississippi in 1961, the Mississippi Freedom Summer of 1964, the Selma voter registration drive in 1965, and the shift towards the politics of black power within SNCC by 1966. Throughout the interview, he situates the activities of SNCC within the civil rights movement more broadly, focusing on issues of leadership, religion, and politics.

Oral History Interview with Andrew Young, January 31, 1974. Interview A-0080. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Andrew Young, the first African American congressman from Georgia since Reconstruction, describes his involvement in the early civil rights movement. After dedicating much time and energy to voter registration drives as a minister in Georgia, Young later entered politics and was first elected to Congress in 1972. Young cites the Voting Rights Act of 1965 as the decisive turning point in race relations and argues that it was this access to political power that allowed African Americans to bring to fruition other advances they had made in education, business, and social standing.

Oral History Interview with Virginius Dabney, July 31, 1975. Interview A-0311-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Virginius Dabney traces his involvement with the school desegregation crisis in post-1954 Virginia. Dabney's political and social beliefs about integration appeared in the newspaper he edited, the Richmond Times-Dispatch. This interview spans the breadth of his career from the 1920s to the 1970s.

Oral History Interview with H. M. Michaux, November 20, 1974. Interview A-0135. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
H. M. Michaux, a Durham, North Carolina, state representative, describes the role of black electoral politics in North Carolina's state government. He reflects on staying power of the Republican Party in southern politics.

Oral History Interview with John Hope Franklin, July 27, 1990. Interview A-0339. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
John Hope Franklin remembers life as a student in the segregated South.

Oral History Interview with Frederick Douglas Alexander, April 1, 1975. Interview B-0065. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Frederick Douglas Alexander served as a city council member who worked to consolidate Charlotte-Mecklenburg County from 1969 to 1971. He discusses the failures of the consolidation movement.

Oral History Interview with Joseph Califano, April 5, 1991. Interview L-0125. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Joseph Califano served as the Secretary of the United States Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (HEW) from 1977 to 1979. He recalls the reasons for the University of North Carolina's opposition to HEW's desegregation criteria.

Oral History Interview with Guy B. Johnson, July 22, 1990. Interview A-0345. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Sociologist Guy B. Johnson describes his path to sociology and recalls his participation in the Southern Regional Council in the 1940s.

Oral History Interview with Floyd B. McKissick Sr., May 31, 1989. Interview L-0040. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Civil rights activist Floyd McKissick was the first African American student to enroll in the law school at the University of North Carolina. In this interview, he discusses that integration effort, along with subsequent integration battles he faced as a student and as an advocate for civil rights.

Oral History Interview with William Gordon, January 19, 1991. Interview A-0364. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
African American journalist William Gordon recalls growing up in the rural South in the 1920s and 1930s. He describes his relationship with civil rights advocates such as Ralph McGill and Herman Talmadge, and explains his perspective on changing race relations and the fall of Jim Crow segregation.

Oral History Interview with Eva Clayton, July 18, 1989. Interview C-0084. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Activist and politician Eva Clayton describes her years of service in and out of politics in Warren County, North Carolina.

Oral History Interview with Virginia Foster Durr, February 6, 1991. Interview A-0337. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Civil rights activist Virginia Foster Durr describes her involvement in the nascent civil rights movement of the 1940s and 1950s.

Oral History Interview with Herman Talmadge, December 18, 1975. Interview A-0331-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Senator Herman Talmadge of Georgia offers concluding remarks in this final interview of a three-part series, reflecting on contemporary political issues of the mid-1970s. Additionally, he reflects on his own political legacy in the state of Georgia.

Oral History Interview with George Simkins, April 6, 1997. Interview R-0018. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Dentist George Simkins describes his efforts to desegregate hospitals and other facilities in Greensboro, North Carolina.

Oral History Interview with Richard Arrington, July 18, 1974. Interview A-0001. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
African American Birmingham city council member Richard Arrington discusses the slowly increasing presence of African Americans on Birmingham's political landscape.

Oral History Interview with Quinton E. Baker, February 23, 2002. Interview K-0838. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Quinton E. Baker reflects on how his identity as a black gay man influenced his social activism, especially his role in the 1960s civil rights protests.

Oral History Interview with Frances Pauley, July 18, 1974. Interview G-0046. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Frances Pauley was born and raised in Decatur, Georgia, during the early twentieth century. An advocate for the poor and of racial integration, Pauley served as president of the Georgia League of Women Voters in the 1940s and 1950s, where she focused specifically on integration of public schools. In 1960, she became director of the Georgia Council on Human Relations and worked within the civil rights movement to promote African American leadership and interracial organizations.

Oral History Interview with Robert W. (Bob) Scott, February 11, 1998. Interview C-0336-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Former Governor Robert W. (Bob) Scott discusses his time in office, reflecting on subjects like the power of the governorship, his accomplishments and disappointments, and the effect of the job on his family.

Oral History Interview with Herman Talmadge, July 29 and August 1, 1975. Interview A-0331-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Senator Herman Talmadge of Georgia recalls national political happenings during his tenure in the Senate from the mid-1950s through the mid-1970s.

Oral History Interview with Modjeska Simkins, May 11, 1990. Interview A-0356. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Civil rights leader Modjeska Simkins discusses race and civil rights before World War II.

Oral History Interview with Robert W. (Bob) Scott, September 18, 1986. Interview C-0036. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Robert W. (Bob) Scott, former governor of North Carolina and the state's community college system president, describes his tenure as governor and discusses North Carolina politics.

Oral History Interview with Hylan Lewis, January 13, 1991. Interview A-0361. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Sociologist Hylan Lewis describes his experiences with race in the American South in the post-World War II period.

Oral History Interview with Terry Sanford, [date unknown]. Interview A-0140. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Terry Sanford recalls his political career as a Democratic governor of North Carolina. He discusses the impact of race on southern politics and the realignment of political parties in the late twentieth century. Sanford attempts to reject the image of southern exceptionalism.

Oral History Interview with Albert Gore, October 24, 1976. Interview A-0321-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Albert Gore Sr.—a politician from Tennessee noted for being one of two southern senators to refuse to sign the Southern Manifesto, a 1956 document decrying the desegregation of public spaces in America—summarizes his senatorial career. He discusses his opposition to the Korean and Vietnam wars, as well as his activities on a variety of Senate committees.

Oral History Interview with William Dallas Herring, February 14, 1987. Interview C-0034. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
William Dallas Herring discusses his rise to membership and tenure on the North Carolina State Board of Education and the struggle to create a community college system.

Oral History Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, February 22, 2001. Interview K-0215. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Daniel Pollitt describes the process of desegregation in the South. He discusses his involvement with civil rights activism and his relationship with progressive organizations and prominent North Carolinians, including UNC law school dean Henry Brandis and UNC basketball coach Dean Smith.

Oral History Interview with Glennon Threatt, June 16, 2005. Interview U-0023. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
A Birmingham lawyer shares his reflections on segregation in Birmingham, Alabama, and racism in the United States.

Oral History Interview with Guy B. Johnson, December 16, 1974. Interview B-0006. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
This interview with Dr. Guy B. Johnson, sociology professor and author, focuses on his work as the first executive director of the Southern Regional Council (SRC) and as a member of the North Carolina Committee for Interracial Cooperation. Johnson discusses the role that women and church groups played in the Interracial Commission, describes the debate over issues such as segregation among SRC members, and outlines the conflict between SRC leaders and the Southern Conference for Human Welfare.

Oral History Interview with George Wallace, July 15, 1974. Interview A-0024. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Longstanding Alabama governor and former presidential candidate George Wallace discusses Alabama politics and racial issues in the United States.

Oral History Interview with Guion Griffis Johnson, July 1, 1974. Interview G-0029-4. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Southern sociologist Guion Griffis Johnson describes her work with the Georgia Conference on Social Welfare during the 1940s and her involvement with the women's movement and civil rights activism during the 1960s and 1970s in North Carolina. She discusses strategies for effecting change, the achievements of the Georgia Conference in promoting awareness of social welfare and race-related issues, and the progress of women and African Americans in their struggle for equality.

Oral History Interview with George A. LeMaistre, April 29, 1985. Interview A-0358. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
George LeMaistre remembers Alabama politics from the 1920s to the 1970s, a story troubled by violent racism and the struggle over integration.

Oral History Interview with Paul Green, May 30, 1975. Interview B-0005-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and activist Paul Green—most famous for his symphonic drama The Lost Colony—reflects on social justice and art as he describes his work as a playwright and his efforts as an activist.

Oral History Interview with Stetson Kennedy, May 11, 1990. Interview A-0354. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Veteran activist Stetson Kennedy describes his desire to strike down segregation in the American South and some of the ways he translated this impulse into action.

Oral History Interview with Strom Thurmond, July 20, 1978. Interview A-0334. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Strom Thurmond discusses his childhood and the people who inspired his long political career. As an attorney, judge, and governor, Thurmond advocated for states' rights and witnessed the desegregation of South Carolina. He recounts how he lived out his values in regard to the United States Constitution and race relations.

Oral History Interview with Salter and Doris Cochran, April 12, 1997. Interview R-0014. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Salter and Doris Cochran reflect on the many challenges that faced them in their efforts to desegregate medical care and public education in Weldon, North Carolina.

Oral History Interview with Clark Foreman, November 16, 1974. Interview B-0003. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Clark Foreman worked in the Atlanta Commission on Interracial Cooperation, the Roosevelt Administration, and the Southern Conference for Human Welfare from the 1920s through the 1940s. This interview traces his efforts to provide equal social services and political rights for African Americans through these organizations and explains how he developed these goals. He also discusses his travels in Europe, his work with Black Mountain College and organized labor, and his criticism of the Red Scare.

Oral History Interview with Virginia Foster Durr, March 13, 14, 15, 1975. Interview G-0023-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
In this fast-paced 1975 interview, Virginia Foster Durr remembers her growing awareness of social problems in the South, and continues sharing her life stories through 1948. Along with her husband Clifford Durr, Virginia recounts their move to Washington, D.C., particularly her disaffection with social society and her transition to political action.

Oral History Interview with Virginia Foster Durr, October 16, 1975. Interview G-0023-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
This is the final interview in a series of three with Virginia Foster Durr. Since the previous session, Clifford Durr had died, making the interview feel very different from the two in which he had taken part. The interview begins with Durr's growing awareness of racial matters and her activism during their life among the New Dealers in Washington, D.C. Among the topics she touches on are the anti-communism of the 1950s, sexual discrimination on Capitol Hill, and the southern reaction to Roosevelt's New Deal policies.