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Reverend Joseph Darby

Reverend Joseph Anthom Darby, Jr., was born on August 7, 1951, in Columbia, South Carolina, to Eloise and Joseph A. Darby, Sr. Darby was raised in the Wheeler Hill community of Columbia, South Carolina. An excellent student, Darby attended Booker T. Washington High School where he was in the honor society and was elected class president; he graduated in 1969 and enrolled in South Carolina State University. Darby transferred to the University of South Carolina and received his B.A. degree in sociology in 1973.

Darby held positions as an adult eligibility worker for the Department of Public Welfare and an employment counselor for a youth opportunity program. Darby was a juvenile probation counselor for thirteen years for the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice.

Darby was called to the ministry and prepared himself by attending the Lutheran Theological Southern Seminary; he was a fourth generation minister in the African Methodist Episcopal Church.

In 1998, Darby became the Senior Pastor of Morris Brown A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina, which had the largest congregation in the Seventh Episcopal District of the A.M.E. Church. He later became the Presiding Elder of the Beaufort (SC) District of the A.M.E. Church.

Darby formerly served as President of both the Greater Columbia Interdenominational Ministerial Alliance and the Greater Columbia Interfaith Clergy Association. Darby also served as a board member of the Family Court of the Ninth Judicial Circuit’s Drug Court Program; a member of the State Superintendent of Education's African-American Achievement Committee; a member of the Racial Cultural Advisory Council of the South Carolina School Boards Association; and a member of the Daniel J. Jenkins Institute for Children. Darby was also a board member for the Reid House of Christian Service and was the former first Vice-President of the South Carolina Conference of Branches of the NAACP.

Darby’s numerous honors and awards include a Top Achiever Award in the 1993 South Carolina Black Male Showcase, and South Carolina Business Vision magazine’s 1997 South Carolina’s 25 Most Influential African Americans Award.

Darby was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on February 3, 2007.

Accession Number

A2007.043

Sex

Male

Interview Date

2/3/2007

Last Name

Darby

Maker Category
Occupation
Schools

Booker T. Washington High School

South Carolina State University

University of South Carolina

Florence C. Benson Elementary School

First Name

Joseph

Birth City, State, Country

Columbia

HM ID

DAR03

Favorite Season

Winter

State

South Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Anywhere Near Water

Favorite Quote

We'll Work It Out.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

South Carolina

Interview Description
Birth Date

8/7/1951

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Charleston

Country

USA

Favorite Food

None

Short Description

Pastor Reverend Joseph Darby (1951 - ) was the Senior Pastor of Morris Brown A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina; a juvenile probation counselor for thirteen years for the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice; and was involved with numerous educational, social, and religious organizations in South Carolina.

Employment

Employment Security Commission

Richland County Family Court

Piney Grove A.M.E. Church

Pleasant Spring A.M.E. Church

Pine Grove A.M.E. Church

St. Phillip A.M.E. Church

Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church

South Carolina Department of Public Welfare

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Reverend Joseph Darby's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers his relationship with his mother

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his neighborhood in Columbia, South Carolina, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his neighborhood in Columbia, South Carolina, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his summer activities in Columbia, South Carolina

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers Florence C. Benson Elementary School in Columbia, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his early education in Columbia, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about integration

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls Booker T. Washington High School in Columbia, South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby reflects upon desegregation

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his activities at Booker T. Washington High School

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls the March on Washington

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes figures from the Civil Rights Movement

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers his high school trip to Washington, D.C., pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls divisions in the African American community of Columbia, South Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers his high school trip to Washington, D.C., pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the music of his childhood

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his experiences in the African Methodist Episcopal church

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers his religious conversion

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about the African Methodist Episcopal tradition

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the importance of African American churches

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his decision to attend South Carolina State Collegein Orangeburg

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers South Carolina State College

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers the University of South Carolina in Columbia

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his experiences of discrimination in South Carolina

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls meeting his wife, Mary Bright Darby

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his career in social work

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers the Vietnam War

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his experiences as a social worker

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls pastoring Piney Grove A.M.E. Church in Gaston, South Carolina

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his ministry at Pine Grove A.M.E. Church

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls becoming an African Methodist Episcopal minister

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers St. Phillip A.M.E. Church in Eastover, South Carolina

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Reverend Joseph Darby remembers his trial sermon

Tape: 4 Story: 11 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his outreach programs at St. Phillip A.M.E. Church

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about Christian denominations

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby recalls his assignment to Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the history of Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the governance of the African Methodist Episcopal church

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes community outreach at Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the perception of AIDS in the church

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes the church's response to AIDS

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about the prosperity gospel, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about advocacy in the church

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about the prosperity gospel, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about the finances of Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about tithing

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his plans for the future

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about the role of women in the African Methodist Episcopal church

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about class discrimination in Charleston, South Caroline

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his political activism

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about his family

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes his concerns for the African American community

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Reverend Joseph Darby talks about President Barack Obama

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Reverend Joseph Darby reflects upon his life

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Reverend Joseph Darby describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Reverend Joseph Darby narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$5

DAStory

3$5

DATitle
Reverend Joseph Darby describes his experiences in the African Methodist Episcopal church
Reverend Joseph Darby describes community outreach at Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church
Transcript
Well, let's talk about the church. Were you--well you told me that in your community everybody went to church. What was your religious experience like?$$Well, I was born up, born in the A.M.E. [African Methodist Episcopal] church, went into ministry in the A.M.E. church. If I had made any other choice, there would have been three, four generations, of Janerettes and Darbys just spinning in their graves probably and coming back to haunt me. I don't remember life without the church, quite frankly. I grew up in St. James A.M.E. Church in Columbia [South Carolina]. I grew up on the Sunbeam Choir and then onto the junior choir and then onto a couple of adult choirs before I went into ministry. I grew up going to church school and Vacation Bible School. I grew up going to church with my mother [Eloise Janerette Darby]. I grew up listening to the bad, the good and the sometimes bad of church because churches are filled with people. That was always a part of my life. It got to be what, I believe, religion best is, not something that you compartmentalize but something that kind of runs like a thread through all of life, and regulates all of life. I think that as I grew that got to be more and more the case until I actually entered the call to ministry against my better judgment, you know, so.$$What do you mean?$$I didn't want to preach. I mean, this is not where I saw myself. My wife [Mary Bright Darby] still teases me if we ever have any dispute or if I'm congratulating her on our thirty plus years of marriage, she'll always say, "You know, you told me you were going to be a lawyer." I say, "Yeah, I know that's what I planned to do." I did not want to be a minister. I had two [maternal] uncles [Ivy W. Janerette and Verseal Janerette], I had seen the best and the worst of that because being that close to two preachers, you got to see the official and public face of the church and then you got to appreciate the undercurrent, that drive, that's driven by human nature, not only in individual congregations but on larger governmental entities in the church as well and up to the denominational level. I grew up, really, having my teen years in what was something of a tumultuous time for the A.M.E. church in South Carolina. I saw my uncles ride that out, I didn't want any part of that, you know, and I came out--$$Well, tell me what, what was it that they were riding out?$$We had, what's a nice way to put it? 'Cause all of the parties are not gone to glory yet. There were concerns about the way that the district was operating, the Episcopal district was operating, concerns about the bishop who was the then bishop of the district. Those concerns caused some very hard and fast lines to be drawn, political lines, and you had some people who were able to work across those political lines in the church and some people who drew up those sides and went after things with a my side I must win at all cost kind of mentality, even if it means doing material damage to you and your side, my side must win at all cost. And I saw how that affected people and I really wanted no parts of it. I had really planned to be a lawyer. I rejected the idea of ministry. What really had me into ministry, my mom passed when I was about twenty-one years old, had been married for about a year and that kind of, even though I was in the church, that pulled me a little further into the church, looking for meeting. As a part of that pull into the church, I started to actually attend, be active in, church activities beyond the local church, A.M.E. church is marvelously structured so we have a presiding elder district structure and a conference structure and an Episcopal district structure, started to attend things and get involved in activities at that level and the more I went to those things and the more I looked at some of the clergy, quite frankly, I just kept saying to myself, "Geez, I can do better than some of these guys are doing." And the more I said that, the more there was just that still small voice they talk about on the inside saying, "Well if that's the case, then why don't you?" And that's how I ended up here, that's how I ended up here. So, this was not my career choice but I love it to death.$We talked earlier, and you were saying there were three components and the church is really the only one that's left. What outreach programs are available here for the community (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Oh my goodness. Let's see what all we do. One of the things we do, because we are a large church [Morris Brown African Methodist Episcopal Church, Charleston, South Carolina], with facilities, is host some things in the area--in the community, free of charge. We host monthly NAACP [National Association for the Advancement of Colored People] meetings, we host a substance abuse group, an AA [Alcoholics Anonymous] group. We host a group called, Second Chance [Second Chance Recovery, Inc., Charleston, South Carolina], for folk who have run afoul of the law with drugs and are trying to recover. We host a parenting group for fathers who are behind in their child support and trying to get that right. We host a group for homicide survivors. We host an Alzheimer's support group and the congregation has a link into all of those things. There are some things as well that are exclusive to the church. We do feeding at a couple of the community ministries, crisis ministry, and one of the other ones that escapes my name right now, on a monthly basis. We do mentoring at Burke High School [Charleston, South Carolina]. We've adopted two of the community elementary schools and, and provide them, hopefully, with volunteers, as well as, own, in-kind contributions. We have a computer literacy class that is free for grown folk who are terrified of the computer so that they can learn to maneuver in this age of technology. We have a tutorial mentoring program for the kids, free, that provides after school care as well as after school instruction, as well as those little lessons in civics and in government to help them to be responsible citizens. We do that during the summer in what's called, a summer enrichment program that ends with them taking a trip somewhere in South Carolina, on the site of historical intellectual significance. We are about to kick off that same program that I told you about with the young ladies, that rite of passage program. We do a bunch of stuff.

Robert "Buck" Brown

Cartoonist and painter, Robert “Buck” Brown was born Bobby Brown on February 3, 1936 in the “Browntown” suburb of Morrison, Tennessee. His parents, Doris Lemmings Brown and WPA worker Michael Fate Brown, separated when Brown was five years old. Moving to Chicago, Brown attended A.O. Sexton Elementary School and Englewood High School. At Englewood, Brown placed second in an art contest where the winner was sculptor, Richard Hunt. Brown graduated from Englewood High School in 1954. In 1955, Brown joined the United States Air Force and gained notoriety for his cartoons. By 1958, Brown was attending art classes at Wilson Junior College, driving a Chicago Transit Authority bus and sketching the dramas of everyday life. Attending the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Brown submitted his cartoons to various publications, and one was accepted by Hugh Hefner of Playboy magazine in 1961. Brown graduated with a B.F.A. degree in 1966.

After nearly fifty years, Brown was best known for his cartoons painted in acrylic colors. His famous naughty "Granny" became a permanent fixture in Playboy magazine. Brown, whose fame came at the height of the Civil Rights Movement, drew more white characters than black ones. However, Brown often depicted establishment types, like the U.S. Cavalry besieged by Indians or other people of color.

Brown not only made a name for himself as a cartoonist but also as a painter of humorous paintings. Some of his paintings were part of Bill and Camille Cosby’s art collection. Another celebrity singer, Johnny Mathis, had a wall in his office covered with Brown’s golf cartoons. His cartoons and illustrations had also appeared in Ebony, Ebony Junior, Jet and Esquire magazines.

Brown passed away on Monday, July 2, 2007 at age 71.

Accession Number

A2007.022

Sex

Male

Interview Date

1/20/2007

Last Name

Brown

Maker Category
Occupation
Schools

Austin O. Sexton Elementary School

Englewood High School

University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

Kennedy–King College

Edward Tilden Career Community Academy High School

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Robert

Birth City, State, Country

Morrison

HM ID

BRO41

Favorite Season

Spring, Summer

State

Tennessee

Favorite Vacation Destination

Jamaica

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Interview Description
Birth Date

2/3/1936

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Fried Chicken

Death Date

7/2/2007

Short Description

Painter and cartoonist Robert "Buck" Brown (1936 - 2007 ) was well-known for his "Granny" cartoon, which appeared in Playboy magazine. His other works ran in the Chicago Sun-Times, Ebony, Jet, The New Yorker and other publications.

Employment

Playboy

Chicago Transit Authority

U.S. Air Force

Ebony, Jr.

Dollars & Sense Magazine

Favorite Color

None

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Robert "Buck" Brown's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown lists his favorites, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown lists his favorites, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown talks about his relationship with Alex Haley

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers his paternal grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his family's work

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his childhood in Morrison, Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls listening to the radio with his paternal grandmother

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown talks about haints in Tennessee

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers his early interest in drawing

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his father's service in World War I

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his parents' marriage and separation

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers the segregated South Side of Chicago

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers listening to the radio with his brother

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers Chicago's Austin O. Sexton Elementary School

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls Englewood High School, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his artwork in high school

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls Englewood High School, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers working with Hugh Hefner at Playboy magazine

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers living on his own from sixteen years old

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers his decision to join the U.S. Air Force

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls racial discrimination in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls racial discrimination in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers leaving the U.S. Air Force

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls drawing a caricature of his commanding officer, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls drawing a caricature of his commanding officer, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers working for the Chicago Transit Authority, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown remembers working for the Chicago Transit Authority, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls attending Chicago's Woodrow Wilson Junior College

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls how he began working for Playboy magazine

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his style of painting for Playboy

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown recalls attending the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown talks about why he left Playboy magazine

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon his retirement from Playboy magazine

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes the creation of the Granny comic strip

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon the reception of his cartoons, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon the reception of his cartoons, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes racial discrimination in the cartoon industry, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes racial discrimination in the cartoon industry, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his work with Ebony Jr.! magazine

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his work under affirmative action

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon his life

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon the career of artist Leroy Neiman

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon his body of work

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Robert "Buck" Brown talks about his favorite cartoonists

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes his family

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Robert "Buck" Brown reflects upon his career

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Robert "Buck" Brown describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Robert "Buck" Brown narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$6

DAStory

2$1

DATitle
Robert "Buck" Brown talks about haints in Tennessee
Robert "Buck" Brown describes racial discrimination in the cartoon industry, pt. 1
Transcript
Oh, I was telling you earlier when, when the haint story that would always get (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Oh, your brother's [Howard (ph.)] haints, yeah, that one, yeah.$$No, no, no, no, this, this--I, I really don't, I can't identify who it was, but somebody was sick. And somebody went up to see about him. And they got there and everything was dark. It was dark outside, it was dark inside. And so, they struck a match to light this candle, and something blew it out. And, you know, I'm under the cover saying, "Oh Lord." And they struck another match, lit the candle, and something blew it out. Say, "I'm going to light one more match, and if he blew this out, I'm gone," and, sure enough, blew it out. And I said, "Oh, Lord," and, you know, being young and frightened, this scared me to death. It was always something like that.$$Look, it's real dark out in the woods, right, out in the country?$$Oh, that's where they invented dark. We went up to McMinnville [Tennessee] to a fair, you know, a little jive thing what, you'd hit the bottle, throw a ball at the bottles and stuff. And I, I went out with my uncle who had a truck. He had so many kids, that's what he needed to carry them in. But we was asking him, having a good time, said, "Well, we'd better go." So, we drive back with the wind blowing and stuff like that. And we get about a third of a mile from my grandma's house, and I'm waiting for him to turn to go up by grandma's house. And he's--my uncle hollers, hollers back, "See you later, Bobby [HistoryMaker Robert "Buck" Brown]." I said, "What?" I had to get down on that road. I could just barely see the difference between the dust and the, the weeds and stuff, and knowing that I, I was in a rattlesnake valley. And so, I'm tiptoeing, and that wasn't good enough, so I finally broke into a full run, and didn't stop until I got to grandma's house. That gave me a, a description of terror, very, very dark. And yet, you know, we'd be sitting on a front bench some nights, and you hear somebody coming out of the road whistling, you know, singing, and--$$Can you see much by moonlight in that kind of situation? When the moon is full, can you see anything?$$I imagine you can. And if you got things on your mind, other than, you know, snakes, I, you know, I know they get snakes down there 'cause I remember as a--well, before I came to Chicago [Illinois], we were going to a festival at Vervilla [Tennessee] I think the name of it is. And I was riding on the mule with my dad [Michael Brown], and Uncle Doc [Doc Brown (ph.)] had his mule and stuff like that. And everybody stopped, and here's the biggest rattlesnake you'd ever want to see in the middle of the road. So, my uncle got off his mule and got a big, big pole, and did him in. Now, this is early in the morning. And on the way back that night, the, the rattlesnake's tail was still switching, you know, I guess, the nerves and impulses and stuff. And that has always terrified me. That land down here is, is laying fallow, you know. Everybody got up and went north and stuff like that, and moved to town, or what have you. As a matter of fact, we went through there last year. And I counted five or six deer. And I'd never seen deer down there at any time. So, you know, it's, it's going back a while. So, I know, I know the rattlesnakes are going, "Come here, Bobby, come here, come here (laughter)."$$(Laughter).$You were saying that there's, believe it or not, there's racism in the cartoon business?$$Yeah (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Yeah, okay.$$I don't, you know, it's not a mean, spiteful thing where it, they look up, and see that you're a boo-boo, and change this thing. They eliminated the characters in my comic strip--just kept the two soul brothers. And, but somebody told me that they were trying to get the syndicate acclimated to where they could sell my strip to the little tiny out-of-the-way, the boonies, and stuff like that. So, you could make five dollars a month off, off of them if you were lucky. So, you know, there wasn't, there wasn't, you, you weren't going to make it as, as a black Jim Davis or a Charles Schulz [Charles M. Schulz]. And so, I couldn't get it to the point where they liked it any longer. And so, one night, we decided to call it a day. And I was tickled to death because, you know, it was driving me up the wall, you know, 'cause I had to be more than what I was, you know. And I was raising hell when it started out. So, I ran into the president a couple of years after, up in Milwaukee [Wisconsin], at a cartoonist get-together. In fact, we were in the same golf cart together.$$Now, who is this, the--$$Mike Cargeria [ph.].$$Okay.$$He was the head of the Tribune Syndicate [Chicago Tribune Syndicate] at the time. And we, finally, after we warmed up and loosened up and stuff, we talk, started talking about it. And I said, "Mike, you know, it don't matter whether I'm pink, purple, or polka dot. I create so much humor in my life. I just want to be able to use that, you know, to, to get something going. I don't have to do a black strip or, you know, or do something about Eskimos. Just let me be funny." He kept saying, "Send me something." So, you know, the newsstands on the corner, the guy selling papers and magazine--okay, I had a little guy who, at one of these newsstands, and he got the newspapers on the front and (unclear). And he deals with the traffic coming in four different direction, and all the different people and stuff, and it worked as far as I was concerned. So, I did it up, Xeroxed it, and sent it off to them. They got it on a Monday. I had return mail Thursday and Friday again. Said, "Buck [HistoryMaker Robert "Buck" Brown], we took your latest submission, passed it around, and we all loved it. And we all agreed to amend that it would work better if it was black." I said, oh, Lord. So, at the time, I had a American Staffordshire Terrier. I kicked him up and down the right path about three weeks, you know, saying, why can't I just be funny? But then, you know, I said, "Well, hey," me and the devil were talking about this. So, I said, "If I want to be a syndicated cartoonist, have something to do every day. I guess I had to make the character black."

Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks

Brigadier General Elmer T. Brooks completed thirty years of service in the United States Air Force in 1985, having held a variety of positions including: Executive to the Director, National Reconnaissance Office, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force (1973-1975); a principal aide to three successive Secretaries of Defense (1975-1978); Commander of a (Titan II) Strategic Missile Wing (1979-1981); head of International Negotiations (arms control), Organization of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (1981-1983); and Assistant Deputy Under Secretary of Defense, Research & Engineering (1983-1985). He had a second career as a government senior executive, serving in NASA Headquarters as Deputy Associate Administrator, Management & Facilities and Space Communications, (1988-1995).

Brooks was born in Washington, D.C. in 1932, where he attended its public schools, graduating from Dunbar High School in 1949. He received his B.A. degree in zoology from Miami University (Ohio) in 1954, and was commissioned through the Air Force Reserve Officer Training Corps program. In 1973, Brooks received his M.S. degree in administration from The George Washington University, Washington, D.C., and graduated from the Industrial College of the Armed Forces. He completed The Executive Program of the Colgate Darden Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Virginia, under the Air Force’s Advanced Management Program in 1978.

Brooks entered the Air Force in 1955, and was assigned to an Air Reserve Flying Center in Pittsburgh as Unit Administrative Officer and then as Base Director of Personnel. He then went to the Philippines as a radar station Commander and later served as a personnel division chief, Headquarters 13th Air Force, Clark Air Base. During the period of the Cuban Missile Crisis, he was a Missile Combat Crew Commander and Instructor Crew Commander with the Atlas F strategic missile system, Lincoln, Nebraska. From November 1965- May 1968, the General served in Houston as a Flight Control Technologist for the Gemini and Apollo space missions at NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center. His proudest achievement in his military career was his participation in the development of U.S. arms control policy as the representative of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He played a direct role in formulating the Intermediate Range Nuclear Forces Treaty and the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaties.

Brooks’ awards and decorations include: the Defense Distinguished Service Medal; the Defense Superior Service Medal, with two Oak Leaf Clusters; the Legion of Merit; the Blanchard Trophy, as Commander of the unit which won the best missile wing competition; the NAACP Armed Services and Veterans Affairs Meritorious Award; the NASA Medal for Outstanding Leadership; and The George Washington University Distinguished Alumni Achievement Award.

Brooks was the seventh child of Warren R. Brooks (b. 1874) a mail carrier and government clerk, and Lelia (Williams) Brooks (b. 1888), a school teacher. He can trace his paternal ancestry back to slavery days. His paternal great-grandfather Albert Royal Brooks, was born a slave in 1818 on a James River (VA) plantation. Albert was first a field hand and later was hired out to work in a Richmond tobacco factory. He also became a successful businessman while yet a slave. Eventually he was able to purchase his freedom and that of his wife Lucy Brooks (the general’s great-grandmother) and three of their children. As a free man, Albert also became a politician and a civil rights activist.

Brooks is married to the former Kathryn Casselberry of Dayton, Ohio. They are the parents of a daughter and three sons. General and Mrs. Brooks reside in Rockville, Maryland.

Brooks was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on November 10, 2006.

Accession Number

A2006.139

Sex

Male

Interview Date

11/10/2006

Last Name

Brooks

Maker Category
Middle Name

T.

Occupation
Schools

Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Miami University

Industrial College of the Armed Forces

Thomas P. Morgan Elementary School

Benjamin Banneker Academic High School

Howard University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Elmer

Birth City, State, Country

Washington

HM ID

BRO38

Favorite Season

Fall

State

District of Columbia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Beaches

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Interview Description
Birth Date

12/30/1932

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Pork Chops, Greens, Macaroni, Cheese

Short Description

Brigadier general Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks (1932 - ) held positions in the U.S. Military as strategic Missile Wing Commander, Military Assistant to two Secretaries of Defense, and head of International Negotiations in Arms Control for the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He also served in NASA Headquarters as Deputy Associate Administrator for Management and Facilities.

Employment

U.S. Air Force

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

United States Chiefs of Staff

Favorite Color

Red

Timing Pairs
0,0:3380,14:4170,26:15002,223:18242,305:21698,378:22058,384:22418,390:28691,459:33256,562:34501,580:35331,589:36244,601:53135,882:54131,898:55044,911:55791,927:57700,949:60190,1045:71962,1198:72352,1204:73210,1270:81166,1397:81478,1402:81868,1408:96958,1665:118204,1868:124276,1955:125012,1965:125380,1970:126852,2003:148340,2365:153185,2437:160155,2555:160495,2560:162280,2591:167850,2642:171540,2695:174960,2760:175860,2774:176580,2790:177390,2808:179640,2844:184279,2880:184571,2885:185666,2900:186907,2923:187783,2937:188075,2942:190557,2991:203340,3113$0,0:330,4:7710,219:10050,277:10680,294:36834,736:46679,836:47260,844:64235,1187:72776,1287:77286,1369:78106,1385:78434,1390:81700,1398:82148,1409:94372,1575:94828,1580:100048,1675:111258,1826:112035,1837:113367,1845:120249,1995:121359,2007:138478,2228:138975,2237:139472,2244:140395,2256:140750,2262:155720,2469:165600,2587:166092,2594:172324,2740:172652,2745:173472,2758:174046,2767:176998,2809:177408,2815:178064,2825:192984,3028:201846,3181:213354,3426:221588,3576:223050,3650:223738,3663:224426,3672:226576,3717:234970,3915
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks talks about his paternal grandfather

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his paternal great-grandparents

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks talks about his paternal great-great-grandmother

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes how his parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks lists his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his earliest childhood memories

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his childhood neighborhood in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls the changes to his neighborhood in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers his neighborhood in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks talks about Nineteenth Street Baptist Church in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls celebrations during his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers his father's employment at the WPA

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls the Thomas P. Morgan Demonstration School in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers Benjamin Banneker Junior High School in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers his art teacher, Lois Mailou Jones

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his classes at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 2 Story: 12 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his athletic activities at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 2 Story: 13 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls the guest speakers at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls the deaths of his parents and aunt

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his friends at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his early employment in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls transferring to Miami University in Oxford, Ohio

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his employment search in Ohio's Miami Valley

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks talks about his wife and children

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his first U.S. Air Force assignment

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his U.S. Air Force assignment in the Philippines

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his intercontinental missile training

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his work at the Manned Spacecraft Center in Houston, Texas

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his work as a military assistant to the secretary of defense

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers Secretary of Defense Harold Brown

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his activities with his family

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks remembers McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his work with the Joint Chiefs of Staff

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes the Cold War disarmament negotiations

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his investment banking work in London, England

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his return to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his career at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his challenges in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his challenges in the U.S. Air Force, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his family's legacy in the schools of Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes Paul Laurence Dunbar High School's facility in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his organizational involvement

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks reflects upon his career

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks reflects upon his life

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his values

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks shares his advice for young people

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes his hopes for the African American community of Washington, D.C.

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks narrates his photographs, pt. 2

DASession

1$1

DATape

3$4

DAStory

10$8

DATitle
Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks recalls his intercontinental missile training
Brig. Gen. Elmer T. Brooks describes the Cold War disarmament negotiations
Transcript
After that, I applied for missile duty (laughter), coming out of the Philippines. People don't normally apply for missile duty; it's not glamorous duty, sitting down a silo in the Great Plains of the United States. But I thought that if I was gonna stay in the [U.S.] Air Force, I needed an operational specialty; I couldn't fly--my, my eyes were not good enough. I tried at least three times to pass the eye exam for pilot training, but I couldn't pass. Tried every ruse I could think of to get through there, and just couldn't, couldn't make it. So I sa- missiles were the next big operational opportunity for officers who wanted to succeed in the Air Force, so I applied for Atlas training, the Atlas intercontinental ballistic missile [ICBM], and strangely enough, I was turned down for that; I didn't understand why. I had a great record up to that point, but I did have friends in high places. The general who was commander of 13th Air Force and the colonel I worked for both interceded with the higher headquarters and said, "Take this guy or he's gonna get out of the Air Force on us, and send him to missile training," which they did. And I went to missile training at Lincoln Air Force Base, Nebraska, and I spent five years there.$$Now, tell me about that training. What were, what were you involved in learning how to do? And what was the progression?$$It was a very intense five weeks there. For me, it was learning a new--what computers were all about; I didn't know anything about computers, so I had to learn what a computer was, the innards of it, how it worked, the Ps and the Os, and transistors and all the rest of that, so I learned communications. Had to learn rocketry--how you make a, a rocket that boost these warheads--all about the nozzles and the aerodynamics of it and what have you--about the guidance system, about gyros and about spatial alignment for gyros, and those kinds of things, so it was a very intense course of five weeks, and I had to leave my, my family in, in Lincoln, Nebraska. I got home once or twice during that period. We lived in a--my wife [Kathryn Casselberry Brooks] called it a haunted house there; it was the only house we could get (laughter) in Lincoln, Nebraska. Unfortunately, it was an old--creaky, old frame house. But I left them there and--unhappily. They didn't like it. Then, came back to Lincoln and, after some on-the-job training, went on alert as a strategic air command--a deputy missile combat crew commander, so I was a number two guy on a five-man crew. I had a crew commander which normally was a major, a lieutenant colonel, or, in a few cases, a captain. And the deputy crew commander was either a captain or a lieutenant. So I was a deputy commander initially, working for a major, and then after a couple of years, I was upgraded; I became the first crew member to be upgraded to crew commander as a captain. I had my own crew. We did very well; we became an instructor crew to--teaching, teaching the other crews the ins and outs of the system, and won a few awards as being the top crew in the squadron there.$The work of a director in the arm control negotiations was one of the highlights of your career (simultaneous)?$$(Simultaneous) Yeah, it certainly was.$$Why?$$Yeah. Well, I--when I think of my career, I think of three pieces. I think of the time when I was a warrior, a cold warrior, and the Cold War was essentially 1945, the end of the Second World War [World War II, WWII], through 1990, when the Soviet Union folded--it was caput. During that period, it was Strategic Air Command, and those bombers and missiles that were the--was the counterforce to the Soviet Strategic Forces [Strategic Missile Troops]. And it was by virtue of our strength in the United States that the Soviets didn't, didn't put missiles--intercontinental missiles into Cuba; that was the Cuban Missile Crisis, and I was sitting in a silo during the Cuban Missile Crisis for forty-eight hours there (laughter) with my hand on the, on the trigger, ready to go if President Kennedy [President John Fitzgerald Kennedy] said so, if the, if the Soviets hadn't turned around and taken those missiles out of Cuba. Well, fortunately, that happened. But in any event, I look at that part of my career as a, as the warrior part. Then, the second part was as an arms controller, an arms reducer. Because strangely enough, the [U.S.] military, during the period I was there in the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I took a lead role in urging the reduction of nuclear weapons, and we had tens of thousands of nuclear weapons, so did the Soviets. And we felt that certainly no more than 5,000 nuclear weapons was more than adequate for deterrence against any adversary we could envision in the future, so we were working toward that goal, bringing it down to 5,000; now, they're trying to get down to 1200, in the latest round of, of talks. But I was involved in every arms control negotiation and agreement that we were involved in--the Law of the Sea [United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea], the CSCE, the Conference on Security in Europe [Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe], MBFR [Mutual and Balanced Force Reductions], which is the Mutual and Balanced Forces something (laughter) in Europe. But this was--all of these were essentially with the Soviet Union was a major player on the other side, and we had, of course, negotiators. Principal negotiators would go to the different pla- mainly, Geneva, Switzerland, but also some other places--the UN [United Nations] and Mons, Belgium, places like that, to negotiate these agreements. I'm very pleased to say that the, the Intermediate Nuclear Forces agreement [Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty] that we engaged in with the Soviets and both sides agreed to, that the principal elements of that agreement, I believe, were, were advocated by my office and the Joint Chiefs of Staff and, of course, we had to go through an interagency process--CIA [Central Intelligence Agency], the National Security Council staff, the civilian side of [U.S.] Department of Defense, which didn't always agree with the [U.S.] military side, but we had some pretty strong conservatives on that side--Richard Perle , Freddie Clay, and some others--the state department [U.S. Department of State], the Arms Control Disarmament Agency [U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency]--all of these would get together in interagency groups at the same level, and I was sort of at the, the number two level down in the, in the government negotiating all of these things. Very challenging, very interesting. Then, just to wrap it up, the latter part of my career was with NASA [National Aeronautics and Space Administration], and this was the peaceful uses of space--$$Okay.$$--so I made the full transition there.$$Um-hm. And so this brings you almost about thirty years now. We're talking about mid-'80s [1980s] at this point, uh-huh (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) Yes it does, yes it does.

John E. Wilson

John Ethelbert Wilson was a business executive and accountant. Known by his friends and family as Big John, Wilson was born on December 9, 1932, in Chicago, Illinois, to Carrie Simpson Wilson and Leroy Wilson. Among members of Wilson’s extended family were his uncle, Arthur Jewell Wilson, the first African American certified public accountant in Illinois, and his grandmother, Dora McDermott, a building owner and manager with property in Chicago’s Bronzeville/Grand Boulevard. Wilson grew up in the Bronzeville/Grand Boulevard area, and attended Wendell Phillips Elementary and High School, which counted amongst its alumni members of the original Harlem Globetrotters, Nat "King" Cole, Dinah Washington, and John H. Johnson.

Wilson went on from Wendell Phillips High School to Northwestern University’s School of Commerce, where he received his B.S. degree in 1954, and was the first African American to graduate from the program. Following college, Wilson served in the United States Navy from 1955 to 1957, returning to Chicago to work for his uncle from 1957 to 1963. It was during this period that Wilson married Velma Brown in 1960; they subsequently had two children, Ginger and Kelly.

In 1963, Wilson was hired by the State of Illinois Commerce Commission as an auditor. From there, Wilson went to work at Bowey's, Inc., as general accountant in 1964. Wilson became a certified public accountant in 1965, and became Capitol Food Industries, Inc.’s treasurer and Bates Packaging Company’s controller in 1969. Wilson also served as the president of John E. Wilson, Ltd., and assistant treasurer of the Public Building Commission of Chicago.

In addition to these responsibilities, Wilson was a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants; the Illinois Society of Certified Public Accountants; the National Association of Minority Certified Public Accountants; Kappa Alpha Psi; Sigma Pi Phi; and Trinity United Church of Christ. He was awarded with the Alumni National Award in 1996.

John Wilson passed away on October 16, 2013.

Accession Number

A2005.168

Sex

Male

Interview Date

7/21/2005

Last Name

Wilson

Maker Category
Middle Name

R.

Occupation
Schools

Wendell Phillips Academy High School

Wendell Phillips Elementary School

Northwestern University

First Name

Ginger

Birth City, State, Country

Chicago

HM ID

WIL27

Favorite Season

Summer

Sponsor

The Jay Pritzker Foundation

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

Chicago, Illinois

Favorite Quote

I Will Never Leave You. I Will Never Forsake You.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Interview Description
Birth Date

12/9/1932

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Hamburgers

Death Date

10/16/2013

Short Description

Accountant John E. Wilson (1932 - 2013 ) was a former auditor for the State of Illinois Commerce Commission, and assistant treasurer of the Public Building Commission of Chicago. In addition to these duties, he founded John E. Wilson, Ltd., an accounting firm based in Chicago, Illinois.

Employment

Bowery's Chocolate Company

Capital Food Industries

Wilson and Gills

John E. Wilson, Ltd.

Main Sponsor
Favorite Color

Blue, Tan

Timing Pairs
0,0:2414,41:3479,53:4686,82:17472,315:18176,328:25482,440:26028,447:26756,462:27666,473:32564,504:38502,548:38818,553:44743,684:45612,703:48061,787:55090,823:56290,836:56850,845:57490,854:71570,986:74143,1099:76434,1140:82438,1257:84492,1292:93350,1355:103745,1464:106295,1503:106595,1508:111620,1729:123134,1839:146224,2095:152166,2153:152887,2161:159955,2260:163220,2298$0,0:9647,174:20900,374:21962,386:22552,392:23732,403:26800,443:27272,448:62810,889:77768,1055:83970,1129:95520,1274:95920,1279:99390,1288:109840,1404:110749,1414:111456,1426:111961,1432:113490,1450:114535,1468:116815,1519:141904,1835:142334,1841:142678,1846:143882,1869:144484,1878:145344,1896:156400,2018:164882,2138:165530,2153:169472,2204:169962,2210:173365,2238:174388,2250:175132,2260:183788,2400:184128,2406:185148,2424:192623,2511:195769,2527:202970,2591
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of John E. Wilson' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - John E. Wilson lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - John E. Wilson describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - John E. Wilson describes the Ida B. Wells Homes in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - John E. Wilson describes his father

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - John E. Wilson recalls his inspiration to become an accountant

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - John E. Wilson remembers his paternal grandmother, Dora McDermott

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - John E. Wilson describes his mother's personality and his likeness to her

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - John E. Wilson describes his childhood jobs

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - John E. Wilson remembers being mugged as a child

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - John E. Wilson describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - John E. Wilson describes his childhood personality and influences

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - John E. Wilson describes the influence of church on his life

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - John E. Wilson remembers Chicago's Wendell Phillips Elementary School

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - John E. Wilson remembers classmates at Chicago's Wendell Phillips High School

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - John E. Wilson remembers playing basketball at Wendell Phillips High School

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - John E. Wilson recalls his time at Chicago's Wendell Phillips High School

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - John E. Wilson describes choosing Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - John E. Wilson describes housing at Northwestern University

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - John E. Wilson describes his social life at Northwestern University

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - John E. Wilson remembers studying accounting at Northwestern University

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - John E. Wilson recalls racism in accounting firms and at Northwestern University

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - John E. Wilson remembers his professors and graduating from Northwestern University

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - John E. Wilson recalls his time in the U.S. Navy, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - John E. Wilson recalls his time in the U.S. Navy, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - John E. Wilson remembers his work as an auditor

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - John E. Wilson describes his wife, Velma Brown Wilson

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - John E. Wilson remembers working at Capital Food Industries, Inc.

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - John E. Wilson describes his accounting firms

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - John E. Wilson describes competition in accounting

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - John E. Wilson talks about volunteering

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - John E. Wilson describes good accounting practices

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - John E. Wilson describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - John E. Wilson reflects upon his life

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - John E. Wilson reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - John E. Wilson talks about his family

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - John E. Wilson describes his organizational affiliations and how he hopes to be remembered

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$3

DAStory

3$2

DATitle
John E. Wilson describes his childhood personality and influences
John E. Wilson remembers studying accounting at Northwestern University
Transcript
How would you describe yourself as a kid growing up, were you--what kind of a kid were you and how would other people see do you think?$$I think I was--because in my particular building there were three buildings [in Ida B. Wells Homes, Chicago, Illinois], there was a gang, and I think I was little bit frightened about that. First thing my mother [Carrie Simpson Wilson] would've killed me if had been a gangbanger, but I didn't I'm not saying that I'm I did everything straight. But I never had the nerve to do many crooked things, I would do some things, in those days they had those big old red streetcars going down the street. And I would hop on the back sometimes like the kids, but that was just danger to myself, I wasn't hurting CTA [Chicago Transit Authority], I could've fallen off and got killed. I don't think that I ever did anything illegal, you know where I could've gone to jail or something like, matter of fact I know I didn't. And then a couple of my friends were doing illegal things and I would see them with money and stuff, and I would say, "Man, I'd sure like to get some of the money." They wouldn't even, they wouldn't even talk to me about stuff like, guys would say to me, "Hey, don't you ever do anything like this you know. You our boy, you growing up around here being honest, stay that way." So I think I was, I also would study some, I never study as much as I should have, but I would do, always do my homework. And I always liked stuff like arithmetic for some reason, and geometry and trigonometry you know through high school [Wendell Phillips High School; Wendell Phillips Academy High School, Chicago, Illinois]. And I would do, I would do my work, I wish sometimes I worked a little harder, but then on the other hand whatever I did must've been okay 'cause I passed one of the hardest exams to get through, especially in those days the CPA [certified public accountant] exam you know. But I think I was just, I was ordinary, I didn't have a lot of money, but I was honest, and, and that honesty was the influence of my mother. It would've broken her heart if I had done something and wound up you know in real trouble. And I, I don't know, I always respected my mother, 'cause I used to see her work so hard for us, I mean tremendously hard.$Were there any black instructors at Northwestern [Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois] when you were there?$$None, there might've been some, I was the first black to graduate they tell me now from the Commerce School [Northwestern University School of Commerce, Evanston, Illinois]. Now it's called Kellogg [Kellogg School of Management, Evanston, Illinois], but I never saw a black instructor anywhere, and if so, they could've been some downtown [Chicago, Illinois] on the Northwestern campus. But I'm not sure, but I never saw one up in Evanston [Illinois].$$Okay now did you, were, were you majoring in accounting?$$Yeah, and the reason was obviously I knew I had an uncle [Arthur Wilson] that was a CPA [certified public accountant] and accounting of all the courses seem to be, come to me it was easier for me than most things. So I just kept taking accounting courses, I can't tell you that I was the greatest student in the world, but the accounting came pretty easy. And I just looked up one day I had a major in accounting, I hadn't started off to be a CPA though.$$Okay what, what were you, did you have a specific goal when you started?$$Just to graduate from Northwestern and since I was in the, in the Commerce School, to get some type of job with some company, that my education would lead me to, I thought. What happened is, when I was graduating and they had job interviews everybody ignored the black people. Actually from the Commerce School, there wasn't but one guy me, and when the, when the accountants--they had the Big Eight Firms up from there and the large regional firms and nobody would talk to you. They would just say, "That's very fine," and brush you off you know, they wouldn't be insulting but it was insulting. And nobody would talk to me, and then you know what, as I think back, I never knew anybody, any black guy that was working in one of these big white accounting firms, no one. And I didn't realize I never thought about the fact that I was in the Commerce School and there were only two guys. I was ahead of a guy of by the name of Woods, I wanted to say Woodside [ph.], but that isn't his name, he's dead now. But you know I never thought about that, but the black student association about ten years ago honored me and gave me a big plaque and whatnot. And they were the ones that told me they had researched and found out I was the first black to graduate from the Commerce School. But when I came out trying to get an accounting job, it was impossible; the only job I got was with my uncle, at a very low rate (laughter).

Colbert I. King

Newspaper columnist and newspaper editor winning columnist Colbert King was born September 20, 1939 to Amelia Colbert King and Isaiah King III in Washington, D.C. Growing up in the old Foggy Bottom section of Washington, D.C. King attended Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School, Francis Junior High School, and graduated from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in 1957, where he was a member of the ROTC and Dunbar’s championship drill team. King earned a B.A. in government from Howard University in 1961, where he heard lectures by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Patrice Lumumba and Walter White.

After graduating from Howard University in 1961, King married Gwendolyn Stewart King, on July 3, 1961. King served as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army’s Adjutant General’s Corps from 1961 to 1963. After a brief time with the U.S. Civil Service Commission, he served as a special agent for the U.S. State Department but quit because of his disagreement with Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO). In 1970, King, on a fellowship with James Farmer at Health Education and Welfare, called attention to sickle-cell anemia and the unequal attention given minority health care. From 1971 to 1972, he worked for Volunteers in Service to America (VISTA), an anti-poverty program created by President Lyndon B. Johnson. King drafted the District of Columbia Home Rule Act of 1973, which effectively combined Washington D.C. and areas like Georgetown, and the Conflict of Interests Bill. In 1975, King left government service, but returned in 1976 as Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Treasury Department. In 1979, President Jimmy Carter appointed King as the United States Executive of the World Bank. In this position, King successfully helped Robert McNamara include the People’s Republic of China into the World Bank. King left in 1980 to become executive vice president of the Middle East and Africa divisions at Riggs National Bank. At Riggs National Bank, King was concerned with federal financial services, international banking and third world indebtedness. In 1990, King joined the editorial board of the Washington Post in Washington D.C. He started writing a weekly column in 1995 and in 2000, King was appointed deputy editor of the Washington Post editorial page.

In 2003, King received the Pulitzer Prize for his columns, which often challenged racial discrimination and religious fundamentalism, critiqued the criminal justice system, and spoke out against the exploitation of the poor. King lives in Washington D.C. with his wife Gwendolyn. His son, Rob King, is the editor-in-chief of ESPN Digital Media.

Colbert I. King was interviewed by The HistoryMakers on May 4, 2005.

Accession Number

A2005.118

Sex

Male

Interview Date

5/4/2005

Last Name

King

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

I.

Schools

Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School

Francis Junior High School

Howard University

Search Occupation Category
First Name

Colbert

Birth City, State, Country

Washington

HM ID

KIN08

Favorite Season

Fall

State

District of Columbia

Favorite Vacation Destination

None

Favorite Quote

It Is What It Is.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

District of Columbia

Birth Date

9/20/1939

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Washington

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Chicken

Short Description

Newspaper editor and newspaper columnist Colbert I. King (1939 - ) is a Pulitzer Prize winner and community leader.

Employment

United States Army

United States Civil Service Commission

United States State Department

United States Department of Health, Education and Welfare

United States Treasury Department

World Bank

Riggs National Banks

Washington Post

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:2855,39:4098,52:28560,195:33300,243:33923,290:34635,299:37078,307:43793,395:44329,404:52650,542:62062,675:70242,824:71778,848:75696,881:76572,897:77740,914:78543,926:88230,1101:89110,1117:89990,1129:94550,1287:105508,1458:106246,1473:107558,1498:107886,1503:133426,1917:138124,1986:138733,1994:140038,2007:140908,2019:142387,2052:155452,2178:155808,2196:161165,2222:161760,2260:172118,2453:172866,2465:173410,2475:174158,2495:174770,2505:178950,2537:180550,2544:190495,2669:194566,2751:197720,2814:209760,2972:210352,2981:210796,2988:213534,3042:219898,3139:220262,3144:226395,3270:227145,3283:227520,3289:228720,3319:245716,3495:246446,3510:256225,3652:257885,3704:266869,3797:267307,3804:268183,3819:268986,3839:279752,4047:280403,4055:294640,4185$0,0:3754,99:14256,265:14830,274:15158,279:15650,290:16388,299:17372,311:46210,668:52440,738:54840,777:55320,784:55960,793:56440,801:71480,1082:79008,1139:81820,1181:88828,1317:91324,1428:101308,1677:117895,1970:125720,2093:127880,2137:128240,2143:131840,2182:133424,2221:133886,2236:134414,2245:134678,2285:135074,2298:138259,2338:139798,2371:145468,2460:146035,2468:147007,2481:153580,2573:178276,2985:178738,2992:184513,3120:198496,3337:200792,3370:201858,3402:209172,3492:210720,3501:212736,3536:219624,3737:220212,3745:230912,3861:231156,3866:231400,3871:231705,3877:233596,3950:239010,4002:240407,4014:250090,4190:251770,4295:253870,4341:254290,4373:267246,4574:267822,4584:273281,4655:273952,4671:277690,4727:284831,4822:290370,4911
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Colbert I. King's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his maternal ancestry

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his mother's childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his father's family background, pt. 1

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King describes his father's family background, pt. 2

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Colbert I. King describes his father

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King describes how his parents met and his father's profession

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King describes his parent's personalities and his siblings

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King recalls the class structure in Washington, D.C.'s Foggy Bottom neighborhood

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King remembers his childhood in Washington, D.C.'s Foggy Bottom neighborhood

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Colbert I. King describes the importance of church in his life

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls his experiences at Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King remembers his childhood in segregated Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his favorite subjects and teachers in school

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King recalls his time at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King recalls lessons from his high school teacher, William Rumsey

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his experience at Paul Laurence Dunbar High School

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King explains his decision to attend Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King recalls popular music and the student population during his time at Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his professors at Howard University, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his professors at Howard University, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his social life at Howard University

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes how he became interested in writing

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King recalls civil rights activities at Howard University

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls political figures who visited Howard University, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King recalls political figures who visited Howard University, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his U.S. Army service

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes working for the U.S. Department of State

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King recalls his work with the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his various government positions during the 1970s

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King remembers working for the Carter Administration

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Colbert I. King recalls the People's Republic of China joining the World Bank

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Colbert I. King describes the policies of the World Bank under the Reagan Administration

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Colbert I. King describes his role at Riggs Bank in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Colbert I. King describes his work at The Washington Post

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Colbert I. King describes his columns for The Washington Post, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Colbert I. King describes his columns for The Washington Post, pt. 2

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Colbert I. King describes his column, 'Pat Robertson's Gold'

DASession

1$1

DATape

4$6

DAStory

6$1

DATitle
Colbert I. King describes how he became interested in writing
Colbert I. King recalls the People's Republic of China joining the World Bank
Transcript
Now did you start--how did you--I mean when did you first feel like you had a, I guess a talent for writing?--Yeah we were asking you about writing, when did you start?$$When did I start--I mean writing? I guess I wrote, I started writing in college [Howard University, Washington, D.C.], freshman year, a teacher named Bunkum [ph.], English teacher, had us writing essays and I wrote an essay about my hometown, and that was well received by her and my whole thrust of it was my hometown is not Washington, D.C., my hometown is the area of Washington where I grew up [Foggy Bottom] and why it was different. Then I wrote a piece that same year '57 [1957] about why Lyndon Johnson [President Lyndon Baines Johnson] was one of the most important people in the country and at that point he was majority leader of the [U.S.] Senate, but I had spent that summer working in the--as a summer job as a messenger in the agriculture department [U.S. Department of Agriculture], basement of the agriculture department and I had a lot of time on my hands in between messenger runs and I read the Congressional Record and that summer they were debating the Civil Rights Bill of 1957 [Civil Rights Act of 1957], Eisenhower [President Dwight David "Ike" Eisenhower] had proposed it, and I read that record every day and I just marveled at the way that Lyndon Johnson handled that debate and worked the civil rights bill through, through the Senate in 1957. It wasn't a major bill, it wasn't as big as the one that came in '64 [Civil Rights Act of 1964], but it was nonetheless the first civil rights bill since Reconstruction and, and Johnson just stayed with me as a major figure then. I mean he wasn't talked about at that time, but I wrote a piece about him or an essay about him and I thought it was pretty good. I wish I had it around just to see how good I thought it was, to see if it's as good as I remembered, but I, that kind of stayed with me as, as something I liked doing. I wrote another paper during college and this is takes 'em to four years, about unknown, or no, small religious sects and how they influence life in the country and what I was trying to do was to, to talk about, write about the role that small Baptist churches and, and Pentecostal churches played in, in this country and I spent a lot of time at the Library of Congress [Washington, D.C.] trying to research this. As a matter of fact that's when I remembered the dearth of information about our churches, about our religious institutions, but that research effort helped me in the vacin- I had, I'm trying to think of the professor who taught, who directed this. He didn't, he cared less about content, but he cared a lot about research, how to footnote, how to write a research paper, when to do the ibids and all that other little stuff, and that technique stayed with me and I applied it to this, this paper on small religious sects and how they influence the country and it somehow, the research effort itself excited me, at being to look at something that people had looked before and find something that's worthwhile writing about. Okay then it was a long hiatus and I went on the Hill [Capitol Hill, Washington, D.C.], it's jumping several jobs ahead, and I wrote a lot when I was working as a staff person on Capitol Hill, write speeches, floor statements, stuff like that and I developed a technique of writing, but I was writing for somebody else and somebody else's voice, not my own, but I learned by working on the Hill so that the fun and power of words and what words can do as far as conveying ideas and, and getting points across to people, and I liked that, but it was doing--I learned all that, did all that vicariously because I was writing for somebody's else's, for somebody else's voice. It stayed with me and to jump ahead, I got a chance to do what it took, to do it in my own name at The [Washington] Post and how I got there I'll tell you about you know whenever you ask me, but and then I've just been able to express that for the last fifteen years of just writing what I think, what I feel either in my own name or in the editorial, editorial read for The Washington Post.$All right we were talking about the Riggs Bank [Washington, D.C.] and--$$Well it, we mentioned, go back to the World Bank [Washington, D.C.], 'cause I feel in that time we did one thing that, that was really important and that was the (unclear) needed to seat the, what was then called the People's Republic of China, they had indicated that they wanted to assume their role in the World Bank that they had before and it was politically very difficult to do, but at the time given that it was 19-, it was 1980 but what--as a result of bringing China into the World Bank and a program with China in there, but today China is a major economic power.$$Right.$$And at the time we started and I was--I had my doubts but they said if you bring China in there, make China part of the global economic system, you're gonna see a different China down the road if we can get them to not only industrialize but to change their economic policies, and I look at China today you know, a major, major producer, a major consumer, driving up the oil prices they're going so, so well, and so but I go back to that decision. I--as a matter-of-fact I got the secretary of the treasury's Distinguished Service Award for handling that--these, the seating of the People's Republic of China.$$So you had to be convinced that it was going to work first before, I mean you (unclear) think about it okay (simultaneous)--$$(Simultaneous) Well we had, as a government we had to be convinced, I mean I had my doubts but as a government we had to be convinced and then we had to--$$Who lobbied in favor it, I'm interested in?$$How did they come about?$$Yeah I mean who was lobbying favor?$$What happened the Chinese first of all made it clear they wanted it and they called in the five ambassadors of the major countries and Beijing [China], Peiping [Beijing, China] and said this is what we wanna have happen, but then they convinced Bob McNamara [Robert McNamara] who president of the World Bank to push for it. I was representing the United States on the board of the World Bank. They couldn't have come in without our acceptance because the board, the U.S. is a major shareholder in the World Bank. At the time we were trying to get legislation through [U.S.] Congress with the [President James Earl "Jimmy"] Carter [Jr.] administration, and there were a lot of people who were opposed to China coming in, so it was a very delicate way of to negotiate the timing of bringing China in without jeopardizing some of the stuff we were trying to get done on Capitol Hill [Washington, D.C.]. There was tension then between me and McNamara about the pace in which he was going. We had a big showdown at the treasury department [U.S. Department of the Treasury] with the secretary of the treasury who was then Bill Miller [G. William Miller], and McNamara and myself, Dick Holbrook [Richard Holbrooke], who is now, who was with the, with the [President William Jefferson "Bill"] Clinton administration and then the Carter administration, but he was handling East Asia. We all got together, McNamara was saying that I was not representing the U.S.'s position in the board accurately and all the people I mentioned backed me up, but we ended up--oh, the Chinese and the delegation he had--they had me at the Chinese embassy trying to convince me along with some other people that it was time to bring them in. We, we worked it, the concern we had, the reason--let me think about this. At the time China was a rather poor country, they would have had to borrow in a same pool from other poor countries with a limited amount of money that we had in the pool. Those other poor countries were mostly African countries and India and some Southeast Asian countries. The African countries were really afraid that if China came in they would--and demanded their share because it was a proportion that they would suffer.$$They would suck up all the money.$$Suck up all the money, that, that was a major concern but they couldn't speak up because not only was this a Third World solidarity, they had scared the hell out of China, and this (laughter) (unclear) the others (simultaneous).$$(Simultaneous) The Chinese soldiers in some of those countries.$$That's right.$$Zambia, and Tanzania.$$That's right and so it fell to us to, to negotiate that. We had to negotiate a larger pool of money to make sure that money would be available so when China came in and got what their population required that it wouldn't suck up all the rest and that take--called for getting negotiations with Congress that they would support a larger replenishment of this fund called the International Development Association and that is what was all behind this thing, so it took some negotiations but we pulled it off and, and I guess I'm kinda proud of that definitely, that's, that and then I went to Riggs Bank after Reagan [President Ronald Wilson Reagan] came in.

Larry Gibson

Larry Gibson was born in Washington, D.C. on March 22, 1942. His mother was a domestic worker and cook and his father worked as a janitor. He earned his high school diploma from Baltimore City College High School in 1960, where he was the first African American class president, a member of the track team and drama club.

From 1960 to 1964, Gibson attended Howard University, where he organized his first political campaign for a female classmate who was running for Homecoming Queen. While at Howard, Gibson was student body president, chairperson of D.C. Students for Civil Rights and pledged Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity. In 1967, he earned his law degree from Columbia University in New York.

Between 1963 and 1970, Gibson worked as an associate for Brown, Allen, Dorsey and Josey. From 1969 to 1975, Gibson served on the Baltimore City School Board. In 1970, he became a partner at the firm he had been working at, Josey, Gibson, Allen and Mitchell, and a year later he handled the first of his many high profile cases, representing the Black Panther party in a murder case and winning. In 1972, Gibson became the first African American law professor at the University of Virginia, a post he held until 1974. Gibson then accepted a position at the University of Maryland law school as an associate professor. In 1977, he was named a full professor at Maryland, where he continues to teach civil procedure, evidence, election law and race and the law.

Gibson has also continued to be active in politics throughout his career. From 1977 to 1978, he served as associate deputy attorney general in the Carter Administration. From 1978 to 1979, Gibson served as Director of the National Economic Crimes Project. In 1987, Gibson helped mastermind Kurt Schmoke's campaign for mayor of Baltimore. He would serve as Schmoke's campaign manger for his 1991 and 1995 mayoral campaigns as well. In 2001, he served as campaign consultant and political advisor for the Ravalomanana for President of Madagascar campaign.

Gibson is currently working on an oral history project about Maryland's African American lawyers and writing a book on Thurgood Marshall's first four years of practicing law from 1933 to 1937. He is of counsel at Shapiro, Sher, Guinot and Sandler where he represents the World Umpires Association which includes all professional baseball umpires.

Accession Number

A2004.093

Sex

Male

Interview Date

7/12/2004 |and| 9/20/2004 |and| 10/19/2004

Last Name

Gibson

Maker Category
Occupation
Schools

Baltimore City College

Booker T. Washington Middle School for the Arts

Coppin Demonstration School

Columbia Law School

Howard University

First Name

Larry

Birth City, State, Country

Washington

HM ID

GIB03

Favorite Season

Summer

State

District of Columbia

Favorite Vacation Destination

Caribbean

Favorite Quote

None

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Maryland

Interview Description
Birth Date

3/22/1942

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Baltimore

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Steak

Short Description

Law professor Larry Gibson (1942 - ) was the first African American law professor at the University of Virginia, later joining the law faculty of University of Maryland law school. Gibson is a political strategist who successfully masterminded several campaigns for former Baltimore mayor, Kurt Schmoke.

Employment

Brown, Allen, Dorsey & Josey

Baltimore City Board of School Commissioners

Josey, Gibson, Allen & Mitchell

University of Virginia School of Law

University of Maryland School of Law

United States Department of Justice

National Economic Crimes Project

Federal Appellate Court

Kurt Schmoke Mayoral Campaign

Venable, Baetjer, and Howard

Shapiro, Sher, Guinot & Sandler

Favorite Color

None

Timing Pairs
0,0:2870,29:4070,38:5345,62:7745,104:8420,115:16820,303:17420,313:18245,326:25952,439:26914,454:27210,459:27950,473:28320,479:30762,517:32834,560:33870,588:35424,609:36164,623:37200,639:39198,678:40234,693:40826,705:43712,754:44452,767:46376,810:46672,815:55806,874:56110,879:56414,884:57022,894:67440,1035:69890,1080:71850,1112:72130,1117:72410,1122:75700,1192:75980,1197:77310,1237:77800,1246:78920,1278:80670,1312:82140,1348:82490,1354:82770,1359:83260,1367:83680,1374:84030,1380:91020,1397:93045,1425:95880,1471:96204,1476:96771,1484:104790,1658:106572,1681:108759,1706:119210,1828:120305,1846:121692,1874:122641,1890:126218,1961:126583,1967:132648,2023:133028,2029:133332,2034:133712,2039:135308,2070:135840,2078:136296,2085:136980,2094:137740,2109:139716,2142:143212,2218:143744,2226:144048,2231:144884,2244:146708,2282:147240,2290:147544,2295:148228,2307:152962,2318:153683,2327:155640,2351:162006,2400:162538,2409:162994,2418:168770,2525:169378,2538:174690,2562:175554,2574:176418,2584:181760,2641:182180,2649:182460,2654:183230,2681:184280,2704:197404,2934:200022,2989:200869,3004:201485,3019:201793,3031:202563,3042:203641,3063:204796,3086:211760,3113:229392,3329:237120,3436:242364,3471:242704,3477:243384,3488:244132,3507:244540,3514:244880,3519:245220,3525:245560,3531:246512,3548:248620,3590:249232,3600:251884,3661:252156,3666:254196,3714:261921,3763:269366,3836:270178,3854:272630,3893$0,0:2448,135:5236,259:6936,308:10812,392:14212,452:15368,478:16320,492:17136,498:17476,505:17952,520:18224,525:18700,534:19380,552:20332,569:22984,614:33353,706:33822,714:34358,724:37105,782:38043,801:38579,810:41527,865:41996,874:42465,882:43001,892:44274,916:45011,930:52886,1039:53362,1048:54450,1075:54994,1084:59278,1147:61318,1185:61930,1198:65590,1203:67690,1241:67970,1246:79312,1435:79708,1448:80104,1454:81424,1487:81754,1493:82018,1498:82612,1513:83338,1527:86044,1579:86638,1592:87232,1604:87826,1615:88486,1629:89740,1646:91258,1680:91786,1689:93370,1717:99226,1735:100171,1755:101746,1787:102250,1797:102754,1806:106510,1828:107500,1839:112496,1894:112808,1899:113354,1908:115226,1935:117800,1991:118112,1997:118424,2002:118892,2009:121934,2072:123494,2093:124352,2106:130940,2150
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Larry Gibson's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Larry Gibson describes his mother and her family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Larry Gibson describes his paternal family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Larry Gibson describes his earliest child memory

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Larry Gibson recalls holiday traditions from his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Larry Gibson describes growing up in Baltimore, Maryland

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Larry Gibson describes growing up on Fulton Avenue in Baltimore, Maryland with his five siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Larry Gibson describes the sights, sounds, and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Larry Gibson talks about his experience at Coppin Demonstration School and Booker T. Washington Junior High School in Baltimore, Maryland

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Larry Gibson describes his experience as one of the first black students attending high school at Baltimore City College

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Larry Gibson describes his high school teachers and decision to attend college

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Larry Gibson describes his experience attending Howard University in Washington, D.C. and chairing D.C. Students for Civil Rights

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson recalls the campaign he led for a homecoming queen at Howard University

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Larry Gibson explains his decision to attend Columbia University Law School in New York, New York, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Larry Gibson describes working as an associate for Brown, Allen, Dorsey, and Josey

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Larry Gibson explains how he began teaching about race and law at the University of Maryland Francis King Cary School of Law in Baltimore, Maryland

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Larry Gibson recalls his service during President Jimmy Carter's administration

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Larry Gibson talks about managing the electoral campaigns of Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Larry Gibson describes Kurt Schmoke's challenges as mayor of Baltimore during the 1980s and early 1990s

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Larry Gibson describes managing the campaign for President Marc Ravalomanana of Madagascar

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Larry Gibson explains his decision to attend Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson remembers managing campaigns for homecoming queen at Howard University

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Larry Gibson details his involvement with the Civil Rights Movement in Washington, D.C. and his friendship with Stokely Carmichael

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Larry Gibson details his extracurricular activities and involvement with Reserve Officers' Training Corps at Howard University in Washington, D.C.

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Larry Gibson recalls his influences at Howard

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Larry Gibson explains his decision to attend Columbia University Law School in New York City, New York, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Larry Gibson reflects on his activism and influences at Columbia University Law School in the mid-1960s

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Larry Gibson recounts his decision to return to Baltimore, Maryland to practice law

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Larry Gibson explains his decision to join the African American Baltimore law firm Brown Allen, Dorsey, and Josey in 1968

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson explains his involvement in the 1971 "Bag of Bones" case and related civil rights cases

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Larry Gibson describes his experience teaching at the University of Virginia School of Law in Charlottesville, Virginia

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Larry Gibson describes his return to Baltimore when he joined the faculty at the University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Larry Gibson recalls his he appointment as U.S. associate deputy attorney general during the Carter administration

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Larry Gibson remembers his work as vice-chair of the National Security Council counter intelligence working group

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Larry Gibson describes his work with the National Economic Crime Project

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Larry Gibson talks about HistoryMaker Kurt Schmoke's first mayoral campaign and election in Baltimore in 1987

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Larry Gibson remembers campaigning for HistoryMaker Baltimore Mayor Kurt Schmoke's re-elections in 1991 and 1995

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Larry Gibson explains the importance of a good slogan and striking design in an effective political campaign

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson describes his work as a campaign consultant for President Marc Ravalomanana of Madagascar, pt. 1

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Larry Gibson describes his work as a campaign consultant for President Marc Ravalomanana of Madagascar, pt. 2

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Larry Gibson recalls winning recognition for Marc Ravalomanana's government in Madagascar from the United States

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Larry Gibson talks about his book 'Young Thurgood: The Making of a Supreme Court Justice'

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Larry Gibson talks about researching the history of Maryland's African American lawyers

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Larry Gibson explains why he never wanted to run for office

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Larry Gibson describes the two courses he teaches at The University of Maryland Francis King Carey School of Law in Baltimore, Maryland

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Larry Gibson explains the most important civil rights cases in Maryland history

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Larry Gibson describes working of counsel to Shapiro, Sher, Guinot & Sandler

Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Larry Gibson reflects on his life

Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Larry Gibson talks about the 2004 presidential election

Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Larry Gibson describes the 2004 voter registration campaign that he led in Baltimore, Maryland

Tape: 5 Story: 14 - Larry Gibson describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Larry Gibson narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Larry Gibson narrates his photographs, pt. 2

DASession

3$3

DATape

4$5

DAStory

2$3

DATitle
Larry Gibson explains his involvement in the 1971 "Bag of Bones" case and related civil rights cases
Larry Gibson describes his work as a campaign consultant for President Marc Ravalomanana of Madagascar, pt. 2
Transcript
Let's talk about one of your cases in which you represented a member of the Black Panther Party who was accused of murder.$$Right.$$I believe it was 1971?$$Nineteen seventy-one [1971]. The "bag of bones" case.$$Can you tell us a little bit about that case?$$Yeah, it was called the "bag of bones" case because a skeleton was found in Lincoln Park [Baltimore, Maryland]. And it was the skeleton of a man named [Eugene Leroy] Anderson who apparently had been killed, and I think killed by some members of the Panther Party. And there had been a trial and one member of the Black Panther Party had been, been convicted. I represented the second defendant, a man by the name of Charles Wyche, about whose innocence I became absolutely convinced; that he just was not there the evening that this all occurred. Just happenstance it was his girlfriend's birthday and they had done some things to celebrate that. But he'd gotten caught up in the wave of, of, you know, of the arrest. And so I represented the--Wyche in about a two-week trial, maybe not quite that long, and he was acquitted. But it, it was at a time when there weren't very many acquittals. According to Paul Coates, who at that time or later head of the Black Panther party in Baltimore [Maryland], that this acquittal here, and Wyche was the first of its sort in the nation. I don't know whether that's true, true or not, but that was, that was one case that got a lot of publicity.$$And was it a, a high profile case? Was it a very hi--in, in Baltimore and beyond?$$Well nationally. Yeah, you know it got, it, it got a lot of attention. The, the Black Panthers were getting a lot of attention back there. Another related case was called the "dog bite" case. The Afro-American newspaper [Afro-American Company] had a way of la--of putting nicknames on things, including cases. Well the "dog bite" case involved a police dog that had, depending upon who's version you accepted, either broke loose or been set loose and bit a lay person, man. And there were some demonstrations in front of the western police district calling for an investigation, dismissal of some police officers.$$Was the layman African American?$$Yes. And the, the, the leaders were arrested and charged with--the demonstrations were charged with inciting to riot. And that was another two-week trial, which I, I had--in which they were acquitted. I tried it before a judge who I thought was a very unfair judge, a man that--and part of what I did was expose his, his bias I think to the jury. The--fortunately there was a newspaper reporter, excuse me, television reporter, who was at the time of this trial out of town, learned about it and says what these officers are saying is just not true, and not only that, I can prove it. He came back into Baltimore, went up to WBAL[-TV, Channel 11, Baltimore, Maryland], found the film that--the, the newsreels. Back then, there wasn't videotape, this was hard film, and gave it to me and I used it at the trial. It was some of the convincing evidence that showed that the officers were just totally--were lying. Those were, there were a couple. There were other times. I mean I, I was reading something last night, actually, about another case. This involved a group of, of demonstrators in front of a--of a place, but they, they were all in jail. And they decided to use the--their hearing to expose the horrendous and unsanitary conditions in the prison. And the judge cooperated with this. And so rather than trial about their case, each defendant came forward and gave this long testimony about, you know, how bad the, the jail was. And this led to some changes in the lockup and, and the places where people were held. Then, so--and as I said, I, I happened to be reading a book last night and read about that again.$$And these were in the early '70s [1970s], these cases?$$Yeah.$Why was there--$$Then I went to (simultaneous)--$$--(simultaneous) concern of how he'd [Marc Ravalomanana] get it [campaign materials] into the country [Madagascar]?$$Well, because he was running against an incumbent [Didier Ratsiraka]. I'm sure that if the incumbent, and a part of this was the element of surprise. That if the incumbent had learned that he--the massive campaign that was about to be run, the material I don't think ever would have seen the light of day. I later in fact made, made a total of about four trips to Madagascar at the beginning of the campaign, at the end of the campaign. I was there for Election Day. But one time we thought the government had discovered the material because this was, this was before bringing--we brought--he brought fourteen containers, I mean shipping containers. Big things, you know look like big things into the country under the government's nose. And there was two containers tied up in a port of Tamatave [Toamasina, Madagascar] that we thought had been found. But it was just the normal, local corruption. Somebody looking for a payoff to let--duty officer to let it pass. But after it was all there, there was one time I got a call that they thought that the government knew that he had all this campaign material. I developed this quick plan to disburse it throughout the material, got on the plane and got to Madagascar as fast as I could. That time I think I went through South Africa. And we over a period of about four nights, in the middle of the night through trucks, disbursed the literature, the posters, the things, all around the country. But still a package, because in Madagascar, there's an official campaign material. Not one piece of campaign literature could be distributed, one poster put up, until the official campaign period. But this scare caused us to distribute and get it out of one place so that when the campaign did begin, it was already the campaign material all over the country. So that, that really worked to our benefit. I have a poster of Marc putting up the first poster and the campaign was launched and he ultimately, and, and he won.

Edward J. Williams

Born on Chicago’s South Side on May 5, 1942, Ed Williams has risen to the top in the world of banking. He attended Tilden Tech, and transferred to Englewood High School after two years. Following his high school graduation, he attended Clark College in Atlanta on a scholarship, though he returned to his native Chicago before graduating. Williams later returned to school, earning a B.S. degree in business administration from Roosevelt University in Chicago in 1973.

Upon his return to Chicago from Atlanta in 1961, Williams, with help from an alumnus of Clark College, bought a newspaper distributorship for the Chicago Tribune on the city’s West Side. The neighborhood at the time was turbulent, and the franchise was sold to him for $6,000, ten percent of the average value of similar operations. Soon, Williams had twenty-five employees. He left the business in 1962, however, after seeing his employees get hurt in robberies. Under the advice of Supreme Life Insurance chairman Earl Dickerson, Williams attempted to get a job with one of their partners, but was turned down for being too light skinned. Undeterred, he continued to apply at banks, and after working briefly with Continental Bank, he was hired as the first African American male employee of Harris Bank in 1964, and he would remain there until his retirement.

Williams rapidly advanced at the bank, first supervising tellers and later managing the department that worked with African American entrepreneurs. In 1980, Williams was named senior vice president of commercial banking, and in 1991 he was named executive vice president of community affairs. He retired from the bank in February of 2004.

Throughout his career, Williams served as a mentor to those who have sought him out, offering his time and advice to others. He has also been active in the community, serving with the Neighborhood Housing Services (NHS) of Chicago since 1978, spending more than twenty years as a trustee of the Adler Planetarium and currently serving as a trustee of the Art Institute of Chicago. In 2003, Williams was presented with the Gale Cincotta Neighborhood Partnership Award by the NHS. He and his wife, Ana, reside in Chicago.

Accession Number

A2004.008

Sex

Male

Interview Date

2/16/2004

Last Name

Williams

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

J.

Occupation
Schools

Edward Tilden Career Community Academy High School

Englewood High School

Clark Atlanta University

Roosevelt University

William W. Carter Elementary School

First Name

Edward

Birth City, State, Country

Chicago

HM ID

WIL13

Favorite Season

Spring

Sponsor

Harris Bank

State

Illinois

Favorite Vacation Destination

Charleston, South Carolina

Favorite Quote

What You Learn After You Think You Know It All Is Most Important.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Interview Description
Birth Date

5/5/1942

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Barbecue (Ribs)

Short Description

Bank executive Edward J. Williams (1942 - ) was the first African American male to work at Harris Bank and served as its Executive Vice President of Community Affairs. He was on the boards of the Adler Planetarium, the Neighborhood Housing Services of Chicago and the Art Institute of Chicago.

Employment

Continental Bank

Harris Bank

Mutual Home Delivery

Chicago Tribune Distribution

Main Sponsor
Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
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DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Edward J. Williams' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams describes his mother's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams describes his father's family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams lists his siblings

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams recalls his childhood neighborhood on Chicago, Illinois' South Side

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams describes his childhood home in the Washington Park neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood neighborhood of Washington Park in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Edward J. Williams remembers his Boy Scout leaders, Clarence Crook and Ted Moran

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Edward J. Williams talks about his experience as a Boy Scout

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Edward J. Williams recalls being encouraged to read by teacher Beulah Dorsey and librarian Ms. Rollins during elementary school

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams recalls his childhood love of horses

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams describes visiting his brother in the rural neighborhood of Morgan Park in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams recalls holiday dinners and listening to the radio with his family as a child

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams remembers the spacious apartment of a childhood friend

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams talks about his childhood responsibilities

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams describes his childhood personality

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams talks about his childhood dream of becoming a foreign news correspondent

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams remembers Coppin Memorial AME Church in the Washington Park neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams talks about his childhood perception of his light skin color

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams recalls his next-door neighbors and his childhood realization of socioeconomic difference

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams talks about his Chinese maternal grandfather

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams recalls his father's illness and death from cancer

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams remembers the impact of his father's death on his family and his mother's strength

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams talks about attending Tilden Technical High School and reflects upon his friendships at Englewood High School

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams remembers attending Englewood High School in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams recalls his favorite academic subjects

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams talks about obtaining a scholarship to Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia with the help of Charles Chisholm

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams recalls visiting the South with relatives and attending Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Edward J. Williams talks about notable peers and African American social hierarchies at Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Edward J. Williams talks about dropping out of Clark College in Atlanta, Georgia to get married

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams recalls moving to Chicago, Illinois with his wife and buying a Chicago Tribune distribution franchise

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams describes his Chicago Tribune franchise territory on the West Side of Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams talks about selling his Chicago Tribune franchise after a paper boy was hurt during a robbery

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams remembers being recommended to run a Chicago Tribune franchise by his former employer, Charles Chisholm

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams remembers gangs and community leaders on Chicago, Illinois' West Side

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams describes the violent character of Chicago, Illinois' West Side

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams recalls selling his distribution franchise back to the Chicago Tribune and starting his banking career at Continental Bank

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams talks about Supreme Life Insurance president Earl B. Dickerson

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams recalls being hired as a teller at Harris Bank in Chicago, Illinois in 1964

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Edward J. Williams talks about not understanding the banking industry when he began his career as a teller at Harris Bank

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams remembers being recruited to volunteer for Talent Assistance Program and working with Sid Barnes of Rotary Connection

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams recalls helping Sidney Barnes, Jr. obtain a loan through Harris Bank while working with Talent Assistance Program

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams remembers deepening community involvement during his early years at Harris Bank

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams talks about his involvement in the Chicago Economic Development Corporation (CEDCO) during the late-1960s

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams explains the African American business community's need for access to financing in the 1960s

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams recalls his coworkers while he was a teller at Harris Bank

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams recalls his career trajectory at Harris Bank and African American hires at other banks in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams talks about navigating the hierarchy and taking charge of his career at Harris Bank

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams describes how he became an integral part of Harris Bank management

Tape: 6 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams talks about the popularity of First National Bank of Chicago among African Americans

Tape: 6 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams remembers attending Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois and earning his bachelor's degree in 1973

Tape: 6 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams recalls his charitable work with the United Way of Chicago, Chicago Public Schools and other civic organizations

Tape: 6 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams describes his experience as chairman of the board of Provident Hospital in Chicago, Illinois during its bankruptcy

Tape: 6 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams reflects upon what he learned as chairman of the board of Provident Hospital in Chicago, Illinois during its bankruptcy

Tape: 6 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams describes his work with Neighborhood Housing Services, the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Chicago Botanic Garden

Tape: 6 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams talks about passing

Tape: 6 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams talks about his retirement party

Tape: 6 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams remembers being subject to racist remarks from coworkers and clients who did not recognize him as African American

Tape: 6 Story: 10 - Edward J. Williams talks about dealing with racist clients and Harris Bank's policy toward racial discrimination

Tape: 6 Story: 11 - Edward J. Williams talks about becoming head of community affairs at Harris Bank in 1991

Tape: 7 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams explains how the banking industry has changed since the 1980s

Tape: 7 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams talks about redlining and the impact of the 1977 Community Reinvestment Act on retail banking

Tape: 7 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams recalls opening a branch of Harris Bank in Chicago, Illinois' West Garfield Park neighborhood

Tape: 7 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams talks about the significance of banks to low income communities

Tape: 7 Story: 5 - Edward J. Williams recalls Harris Bank's philanthropic foundation's work in Chicago, Illinois' North Lawndale neighborhood

Tape: 7 Story: 6 - Edward J. Williams reflects upon the future of the banking industry

Tape: 7 Story: 7 - Edward J. Williams gives advice to young people interested in financial careers

Tape: 7 Story: 8 - Edward J. Williams describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 7 Story: 9 - Edward J. Williams describes his involvement in the Asian American community

Tape: 7 Story: 10 - Edward J. Williams talks about his plans for civic involvement during retirement

Tape: 7 Story: 11 - Edward J. Williams reflects upon his legacy

Tape: 8 Story: 1 - Edward J. Williams narrates his photographs, pt. 1

Tape: 8 Story: 2 - Edward J. Williams narrates his photographs, pt. 2

Tape: 8 Story: 3 - Edward J. Williams narrates his photographs, pt. 3

Tape: 8 Story: 4 - Edward J. Williams narrates his photographs, pt. 4

DASession

1$1

DATape

5$5

DAStory

2$8

DATitle
Edward J. Williams recalls helping Sidney Barnes, Jr. obtain a loan through Harris Bank while working with Talent Assistance Program
Edward J. Williams talks about navigating the hierarchy and taking charge of his career at Harris Bank
Transcript
Anyway, [Sidney Barnes, Jr.] he needed money, like everyone needed starting up a business. And I was just coming out of the teller area at the time, by then. And I had no lending authority--didn't know anyone as a loan officer. But I had gotten to meet one of the senior vice presidents whose checks I used to cash as a teller. And I explained to him how I'd gotten involved, and this person I was working with, and the stage where we were--where this man now needed money to take his production business and get it going. So he says, "Okay, [HistoryMaker Edward J. Williams] Ed." And I don't know why he said he'd do this, but anyway, he did. We got in a cab, went out to [East] 19th [Street] and [South] Calumet [Avenue] [sic. 1900 South Calumet Avenue, Chicago, Illinois]. He met Sid. They talked about stuff that--I didn't understand what they were talking about. But he, you know, he was a senior vice president of the bank [Harris Trust & Savings Bank; BMO Harris Bank, Chicago, Illinois]. We got in a cab going on our way back to the bank. And he says, "What do you think we should do, Ed?" I said, "Well, I think we should make the loan." So he says, "What the hell, let's do it." He made the loan. And so, Sid got the money he needed to get the records pressed. The records were then shipped back to his studio. And he'd gotten the radio to start playing the records that he had cut and for the people he'd signed. And then, there was a strike, and he couldn't get the records. I forget now. He couldn't get the records to the stores. So, they were being aired on the radio, but they couldn't get delivered to the distribution points. And so, by the time the strike was over, the music had run its course, and because people couldn't buy it, and the DJs are going on to something else. And so, the strike lasted, you know, a month and a half or so because he couldn't get it. Anyway, long story short--he couldn't pay back the loan. And it didn't break my career though, and they didn't hold that against me. It didn't hurt me at all. But that was my first loan at the bank--was--this is it, yeah.$$You know, what I find amazing about that--one, you're dealing with the senior vice president at the time, and getting him to go on a car over to look at--was that typical of Harris?$$No.$$I mean, so how did that--you had the chutzpah enough to ask or I'm--$$I didn't know any different--$$You didn't know any different?$$--didn't know any different. And I got myself involved with this organization [Talent Assistance Program (TAP)] with this individual. And I was supposed to be his advocate and so, I had to deliver, or do the best that I could. And so I tried to carry out that commitment.$You become assistant, you say, manager, and then--$$A manager--$$Manager--$$--in personal banking.$$--okay.$$Of a personal banking unit, and meaning I was the manager of an area on the first floor as a part of the personal banking division. I eventually went on to become the division administrator taking on the responsibility for all the retail banking for Harris [Trust & Savings Bank; BMO Harris Bank, Chicago, Illinois] eight or nine years later.$$Okay. And now, as you move up, what things are you learning about that, you know, about the corporate? And it's a very structured, you know, the corporate America at this point is extremely sort of structured.$$Um-hm. What I'm learning most is that you had to take charge of your career yourself; that you had to--that the bank, except for a very few people, or any company for that matter, was going to design or set out a career for you, or to put you on a track that led you to the upper parts of the bank. And so, I tried to think about where I wanted to be, and who I needed to get to know to get to my next position. And so, I was always thinking, you know, a year or two down the road. And I never thought or even had designs on trying to be the president of the bank because I just--that was just a waste of time to think about that sort of thing. But I did feel that there was more growth for me there at the company, and I had to figure what are the areas that I can grow into where I would have the skills to do very well in that area, and tried to avoid being placed in areas where it would be very difficult for me to succeed. And so, I was very fortunate or lucky in that I landed in places that played to my strengths because I didn't have the background or the training for, you know, many of the jobs in the bank, but also very fortunate in that I had very supportive bosses, managers along the way, who did what you'd want a good manager to be--

Fred C. Matthews, III

YMCA executive Fred C. Matthews III was born March 4, 1942, in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Matthews spent his youth at the Branco-Clark YMCA in Baton Rouge. He attended Valley Park and Perkins Road elementary schools and graduated from McKinley High School in 1958, where he was an honor student and president of the Louisiana State Student Council. Matthews went on to Southern University, where he graduated with a B.A. in sociology in 1962, and received a commission as a second lieutenant in the United States Army. He completed his military service with the rank of captain.

In 1966, after six months as a Chicago eighth grade teacher, Matthews was hired at the YMCA in Chicago as the director of the Youth Employment and Training Orientation Center. In 1971, he was appointed district director of the YMCA’s South District, thus becoming the youngest area YMCA chief. In 1985, Matthews became executive director of the Duncan YMCA. Here he developed programs to fight infant mortality and joblessness, and worked to establish the $3 million Chernin Center for the Arts, with a 220-seat theatre, art gallery, dance studio, town meeting room and other amenities. Matthews was appointed vice president of community relations for the YMCA of Metropolitan Chicago in 1993 and became a member of the corporate staff. Matthews, a Rotarian and a Kiwanian is a member of a number of organizations, including: 100 Black Men, Inc., Southern University Alumni Association, Illinois Arts Alliance Foundation, the Chicago Department of Human Services Committee, Operation PUSH, and Grant Memorial A.M.E. Board of Trustees.

In 2003, the YMCA recognized Matthews’ contributions by naming a new building the Fred C. Matthews III Senior Center in his honor. Still active after thirty-eight years with the YMCA, Matthews and his wife of thirty-nine years, Roslyn, have two daughters.

Accession Number

A2003.285

Sex

Male

Interview Date

12/3/2003

Last Name

Matthews

Maker Category
Marital Status

Married

Middle Name

C.

Occupation
Schools

McKinley Senior High School

Valley Park Elementary School

Perkins Road Elementary School

Mckinley Middle Magnet School

First Name

Fred

Birth City, State, Country

Baton Rouge

HM ID

MAT02

Favorite Season

Christmas

State

Louisiana

Favorite Vacation Destination

Aruba

Favorite Quote

Fake It Until You Make It.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Illinois

Interview Description
Birth Date

3/4/1942

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Chicago

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Chicken, Rice, Gravy

Short Description

Nonprofit executive Fred C. Matthews, III (1942 - ) has served as the director of the Youth Employment and Training Orientation Center, district director, and as executive director for the YMCA. As district director, he developed the Chernin Center for the Arts, and was appointed vice president of community relations of the Metropolitan YMCA.

Employment

Chicago Public Schools

Chicago YMCA

YMCA

Duncan YMCA

Favorite Color

Brown

Timing Pairs
0,0:615,7:2199,32:3090,43:9421,113:9889,118:21044,253:27596,361:32070,377:32620,384:46308,504:47439,521:51441,602:54573,680:55791,701:64926,863:65274,868:74606,926:75198,935:78528,999:82820,1075:83930,1112:85336,1138:85706,1144:91996,1292:93180,1316:93698,1324:116614,1604:127090,1680:130840,1742:134424,1784:152140,1995:152932,2005:158878,2057:167820,2192:168180,2197:172962,2218:175920,2249:176532,2256:178360,2261$0,0:11470,35:21870,169:22270,174:22870,182:23270,187:24070,196:31367,220:31872,226:36498,289:36874,294:37814,300:38284,306:39224,320:41574,346:44018,368:48154,422:49282,437:49658,442:65570,496:66039,504:66575,514:67245,525:68518,545:69054,554:70558,562:70994,567:72302,582:72738,587:73283,593:75027,607:78499,619:79150,628:86150,658:86518,663:86886,668:88358,684:88726,689:91885,706:92479,713:105430,812:119070,889:120550,896:121297,906:128214,1000:128566,1005:129006,1011:138656,1129:139403,1143:140897,1163:141229,1168:141644,1174:179290,1481
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Fred C. Matthews, III's interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Fred C. Matthews, III narrates his photographs

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Fred C. Matthews, III lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his maternal family background

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his paternal family background, pt. 1

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his paternal family background, pt. 2

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his father's career at Standard Oil in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his father's education and his involvement in the Baptist church

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his father's civic responsibilities in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his mother

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about Dr. Valerian Smith and HistoryMaker Reverend Gardner Taylor

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about schools he attended in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Fred C. Matthews, III recalls serving at a cast party for 'Band of Angels' in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about the 1957 movie, 'Band of Angels'

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Fred C. Matthews, III explains how his parents met

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his childhood neighborhood in South Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Fred C. Matthews, III recalls the 1953 bus boycott in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his siblings

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Fred C. Matthews, III remembers notable elementary school teachers

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his experience at McKinley Senior High School in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, pt. 1

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his experience at McKinley Senior High School in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, pt. 2

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Fred C. Matthews, III explains his decision to attend Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his undergraduate experience at Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his extracurricular activities at Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Fred C. Matthews, III recalls a series of student sit-ins in Baton Rouge, Louisiana in 1960s

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about majoring in sociology at Southern University and Agricultural and Mechanical College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his experience serving in the U.S. military in South Korea in 1963, pt. 1

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his experience serving in the U.S. military in South Korea in 1963, pt. 2

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Fred C. Matthews, III recalls significant events from his time stationed at Fort Dix, New Jersey

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about the end of his U.S. Army career in 1965

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes how he began working for the YMCA in 1966

Tape: 4 Story: 9 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about his appointment as YMCA district director of Chicago, Illinois' Near South District

Tape: 4 Story: 10 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about BAN-WYS, a coalition of YMCA staff in the 1970s

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about the YMCA facilities under his jurisdiction in Chicago, Illinois during the 1970s and 1980s

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about YMCA programs he supported as district director in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes the development of arts programs at the Duncan YMCA in Chicago, Illinois

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about YMCA arts programs

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Fred C. Matthews, III talks about the YMCA's Youth Basketball Association

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes his hopes and concerns for the African American community

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Fred C. Matthews, III describes the YMCA's character and community building functions

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Fred C. Matthews, III reflects upon his legacy

DASession

1$1

DATape

2$5

DAStory

8$8

DATitle
Fred C. Matthews, III recalls serving at a cast party for 'Band of Angels' in Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Fred C. Matthews, III reflects upon his legacy
Transcript
During that period of time, the sights and sounds, Baton Rouge [Louisiana], my dad [Fred Matthews, Jr.] did more than just work at the Standard Oil and that involvement. He also was trying to pay off a mortgage for the house that he built in 1942, the year that I was born at 1319 E. Washington Street in South Baton Rouge. So we would go with him to wax and clean floors in folks' houses and we would pick pecans and sell them. And also we would serve parties. My daddy would serve parties. He had small parties he would serve and then there were big parties that they would have out in, in Ryan Field [Baton Rouge Metropolitan Airport] in these airplane hangars. He would have all these white jackets and he would be going through South Baton Rouge giving the jackets to men saying you want to work tonight? You want to--? And we would do that. But he also served some very intimate parties and one of which that I remember quite vividly was when Clark Gable was in town filming 'Band of Angels.' And--$$Right.$$--I went to serve and daddy had a couple of ladies doing the finger sandwiches and they were wearing their little black uniforms and white aprons. I had on my little white jacket. Dad had on his white jacket. And dad was mixing the drinks and I was kind of walking around as a fourteen or fifteen year old kind of serving the drinks to this party. They had the president of Fidelity Bank [New Orleans, Louisiana], LSU [Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge, Louisiana], and all were there at this lovely house on the lake there in Baton Rouge.$$Now--$$And I had a chance to serve Clark Gable. But I conversed with Clark Gable's wife and she gave me some advice. She said, "Son, whatever you do, you get you an education," and I've never forgotten that from Clark Gable's wife.$$Was this Carole Lombard?$$I can't remember if it was Carole.$$Okay. Blonde?$$She was blonde. Yeah and--$$Yeah, I think it might have been Carole Lombard.$$It may have been. This was something that I didn't forget. And I thank my father so for taking me with him to serve that. He could have taken anybody just to serve that party. But he took me along because I think he knew what exposure I would get there being a part of that and seeing that.$When you look back on your career, what would you consider as your legacy?$$Well, one is after spending thirty-seven years is that you can stick to one organization and meet some of your lifetime goals. The other, as a black person in the Y [YMCA, Young Men's Christian Association], can show other young blacks coming along that there can be a future in the YMCA, a career, and that you can use the YMCA to get a lot of things done in your community. And I think that coming down the stretch, getting people to understand that the arts is an integral part of life itself in that just about everything is about arts, writing, communicating. The arts give more than just balance to life itself, it pulls people together whether it's a song in the morning or listening to the very articulate minister or art of speaking, listening to hip hop, that's the arts. And the arts have a way of really affecting your life. You don't have to be a great performer on stage but the arts has been proven that with young people that get involved with the arts that they're learning is enhanced tremendously in the early grades as they are utilizing the integration of arts into their curriculum. So I think the arts piece and the role model piece and the opportunity to be a part of an institution like the YMCA for thirty-seven years, where else can you really meet Vice President [Hubert] Humphrey, Hillary Clinton and others? It's a great institution. I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Vernon Jones

Vernon Jones was born on October 31, 1960, in Laurel Hill, North Carolina. From there he went on to attend North Carolina Central University in Durham, earning a B.A. in business administration in 1983. Jones would later graduate from Harvard's John F. Kennedy School of Government's Executive Program.

Jones began his career working in the telecommunications industry, first with WorldCom and later with BellSouth Corporation, where he was part of a team that established wireless communications in Montevideo, Uruguay. Always interested in public policy issues, Jones sought election to the Georgia House of Representatives where he served for eight years, from 1992 to 2000.

After leaving the Georgia House of Representatives, Jones remained active in politics. Currently he serves as the CEO of DeKalb County, Georgia, a position in which he oversees the Board of Commissioners of the county. He is also responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of a 7,000-employee civic workforce and a $2.6 billion budget within the state's second most populous county. He has the honor of being the youngest person to hold this position. Since being elected, Jones has been active in purchasing land for the county to be used as parks, as well as a landmark initiative requiring all senior county employees to disclose financial information to prevent any conflicts of interest. Jones is currently working to significantly boost economic growth within DeKalb County.

Outside of the office, Jones is active in a number of community and civic organizations, including the Advocates for Seniors; New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Decatur, Georgia; Youth Prevention Services; and the National Black M.B.A. Association. He is also a founding member of the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Stone Mountain Alumni Chapter.

Accession Number

A2003.189

Sex

Male

Interview Date

8/14/2003

Last Name

Jones

Maker Category
Schools

Pate Gardner Elementary

Scotland High

North Carolina Central University

First Name

Vernon

Birth City, State, Country

Laurel Hill

HM ID

JON08

Favorite Season

Fall

State

North Carolina

Favorite Vacation Destination

Stone Mountain, Georgia

Favorite Quote

Feathers Come With The Chicken.

Bio Photo
Speakers Bureau Region State

Georgia

Interview Description
Birth Date

10/31/1960

Birth Place Term
Speakers Bureau Region City

Atlanta

Country

USA

Favorite Food

Chicken (Blackened)

Short Description

County government administrator Vernon Jones (1960 - ) is the youngest CEO of DeKalb County, Georgia.

Employment

George House of Representatives

DeKalb County, Georgia

Favorite Color

Blue

Timing Pairs
0,0:1530,39:2250,56:2970,65:8550,171:9540,189:10890,203:11790,217:12870,223:13590,232:19110,272:23720,341:24695,358:25745,376:26570,390:28820,443:30170,466:30545,472:37220,618:38795,660:51560,851:52160,858:59999,940:65140,1009:66580,1033:68740,1061:70090,1086:72970,1133:73780,1141:74320,1149:74680,1154:83682,1259:83966,1264:84392,1279:85031,1294:86238,1322:88439,1378:105236,1626:105616,1632:106908,1668:110252,1731:112988,1800:113976,1816:115724,1859:117016,1878:119828,1937:120512,1948:127960,2005:135210,2108$0,0:596,9:1114,18:1410,23:3778,72:4814,102:10067,189:30110,536:35145,604:37035,626:38295,637:38715,642:39975,664:40920,675:43660,681:45560,729:52020,860:61866,988:62976,1079:75545,1280:76280,1314:82130,1352:86354,1422:97864,1564:98188,1569:99403,1591:101023,1629:101347,1634:114525,1824:115394,1838:116421,1853:121395,1898:121719,1903:122367,1912:127389,2000:128280,2009:128604,2014:148578,2248:152240,2300:157712,2351:158223,2360:158661,2371:160997,2442:161946,2448:162238,2456:165170,2469:165950,2483:173020,2597
DAStories

Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Vernon Jones' interview

Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Vernon Jones lists his favorites

Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Vernon Jones describes his maternal family background

Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Vernon Jones talks about his family's encounters with discrimination in the American South

Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Vernon Jones talks about the level of educational attainment in his family

Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Vernon Jones talks about his paternal family background and how his parents met

Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Vernon Jones describes his father and the tradition in his paternal family of naming children after Robert E. Lee

Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Vernon Jones recalls his father advising young soldiers shipping out to Vietnam

Tape: 1 Story: 9 - Vernon Jones remembers the family receiving news from Vietnam about a brother's injury

Tape: 1 Story: 10 - Vernon Jones describes his earliest childhood memory

Tape: 1 Story: 11 - Vernon Jones describes the sights, sounds and smells of his childhood

Tape: 1 Story: 12 - Vernon Jones describes growing up in rural South Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Vernon Jones describes his childhood personality

Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Vernon Jones talks about the role of the church in the rural southern community of his childhood

Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Vernon Jones talks about the culture of Southern hospitality

Tape: 2 Story: 4 - Vernon Jones describes the culture of his childhood community, Laurel Hill, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 5 - Vernon Jones recalls his first grade teacher

Tape: 2 Story: 6 - Vernon Jones talks about developing a dislike for school in the second grade

Tape: 2 Story: 7 - Vernon Jones talks about Scotland High School in Laurinburg, North Carolina

Tape: 2 Story: 8 - Vernon Jones describes his parents' personalities

Tape: 2 Story: 9 - Vernon Jones talks about the impact of the Civil Rights Movement on his parents' lives

Tape: 2 Story: 10 - Vernon Jones talks about his responsibilities on the family farm

Tape: 2 Story: 11 - Vernon Jones talks about listening to Motown singers and watching black entertainers on TV

Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Vernon Jones talks about family television programming in the 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Vernon Jones talks about driving a school bus as a high school student

Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Vernon Jones talks about his decision to attend North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Vernon Jones describes the development of his political consciousness at North Carolina Central University in the late 1970s

Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Vernon Jones talks about the 1979 Greensboro Massacre and meeting HistoryMaker Julian Bond

Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Vernon Jones talks about individuals who influenced him at North Carolina Central University in Durham, North Carolina

Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Vernon Jones talks about working on an assembly line at Research Triangle Park in the early 1980s

Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Vernon Jones talks about interning for IBM in Poughkeepsie, New York during the early 1980s

Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Vernon Jones talks about working for Coca-Cola as a trade examiner in the early 1980s

Tape: 3 Story: 10 - Vernon Jones talks about being hired by MCI Communications and subsequent jobs in the telecommunications industry

Tape: 3 Story: 11 - Vernon Jones talks about the beginning of his Georgia political career

Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Vernon Jones describes the demographic changes in the Atlanta, Georgia metropolitan area since the 1970s

Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Vernon Jones talks about his 1990 and 1992 campaigns for the Georgia House of Representatives

Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Vernon Jones talks about issues debated in the Georgia House of Representatives during the 1990s

Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Vernon Jones explains how politicians often pander to public opinion on issues such as crime and incarceration

Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Vernon Jones explains the paradox of campaigning as an "honest politician"

Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Vernon Jones talks about the roles the domestic economy and the media play in American politics

Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Vernon Jones talks about the role of celebrity in American politics

Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Vernon Jones explains why he ran for state office and his political orientation

Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Vernon Jones explains the differences between his role as a Georgia state representative and as chief executive officer for DeKalb County

Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Vernon Jones talks about his recession era fiscal policy as chief executive officer of DeKalb County, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Vernon Jones talks about how his IT and management backgrounds have influenced his work as chief executive officer of DeKalb County, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Vernon Jones talks about the ethos of service informing his work as chief executive officer of DeKalb County, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Vernon Jones talks about future plans for public services and transportation in DeKalb County, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Vernon Jones describes his approach to county governance as chief executive officer of DeKalb County

Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Vernon Jones explains his views on affirmative action programs in county governance

Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Vernon Jones reflects upon his legacy as chief executive officer of DeKalb County, Georgia

Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Vernon Jones describes how he would like to be remembered

Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Vernon Jones narrates his photographs

DASession

1$1

DATape

1$4

DAStory

8$8

DATitle
Vernon Jones recalls his father advising young soldiers shipping out to Vietnam
Vernon Jones explains why he ran for state office and his political orientation
Transcript
My dad [Robert Lee Jones] talked a lot about his [U.S.] military career. He served in the Third Army. That was a unit attached to General [George] Patton. He, he loved history, he loved politics. He always talked about national politics, more so than local or, or, or state politics, loved the military. Four of my brothers were in the military. I can remember a lot of young men who were getting prepared to go to [the] Vietnam [War]. When they would finish basic training and come back home for those few days before they shipped out, I can recall they all wanted to stop by my father's house and talk to him about what the experience would have been like, with him having been in World War II [World War Two, WWII]. And he always would tell them all--I can always remember we used to laugh as a kid about it, as kids about it, but he would always tell those guys stay on your toes at all times. In other words, stay alert. You have to if you, if you want to make it back home.$$Okay.$$And he, he understood what war was about. He understood how a young man--'cause he was nineteen going over there. Young people don't fear or have as much fear as older people. And my dad, having gone through that experience, he knew that those young men may have seen that it's something very exciting. It certainly was exciting, but at the same time, there had been a, a big possibility that they would be shipped back in a body bag. And he didn't want them to get lax. He wanted to remain alert, be aware, do everything they can do to make sure they returned home safely. And so, I guess that's one of the reasons why, being passed onto me, I never went in the military. But knowing how strong my dad was in support of the military, coming into the county, elected in this job, I created the first veteran's commission. And since then we have done a number of not only ceremonial events to honor veterans, but also we're in the process of constructing a pavilion to honor veterans. But that was because of my experience and that my dad had--$$Yeah.$$--in terms of being in support of the military--$So what, what was your initial motivation for running for office in the first place?$$Thought I could make a difference, want to get in the game, stop being on the sideline, stop saying we should do this or do that, get in there. That's the only way you can change it. For me, for me--people have different roads. Some people want to be on the sideline, maybe advise or, or work the crowd. Some wanna get in and be a player. I wanted to get in. I wanted to get in and be a player. I, I thought and I still believe my experiences bring a lot, one, coming up on the other side of the track; two, my corporate experience; three, the fact that I know there are people out there that, they're getting the shaft. There're some serious problems. I'm a solution, I'm a solutionist [ph.], not, not someone who just want to point the finger all the time. J.C. Watts is one of my good friends. J.C., he left [U.S.] Congress because J.C. was frustrated. You know, we're here to really do something, or we're here because my party, I'm gon' do this; your party, you do that. And because you happen to be of a different party, even if you got a good idea, I'm not gonna work with you. I'm not gonna agree with you. Ah, that's not right. Do what makes sense. But you don't have that.$$Yeah, J.C. Watts seemed to have relationships across the, across party lines. Now, but he's considered like a, you know, conservative black Republican. Do, do those labels have a lot of meaning for you, Democrat, Republican, liberal, conservative?$$You know what, I am--I've seen some of the, the most liberal conservatives and some of the most conservative liberals. I, I like to think that I, I am, some call it a centrist. Maybe I am, because I'm, I'm not way over here to the, to the right. I'm not all the way over here to the left. I just believe in, in just being reasonable and sensible. I think most American people are in the middle. The conservatives, the most, the most conservative person in some, in some settings, being conservative means the government shouldn't tell a woman what to do when she make a decision between her and her doctor. That's being conservative, all right. Then that liberal, there are some liberals out there who actually believe in a, in, in, in, in not having an abortion. But it's the rhetoric. What gets me is when you have these people who wanna say oh, family values and this, and I'm that, and I'm this, when in fact, if you look in their closet, they have no family values; it's hype, and they play to people's fears. Let's not play to people's fears.