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The Special Collections is located on the east side of the Library at the front of the 3rd floor.

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Patricia W. & J. Douglas Perry Library
Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0256
telephone (757) 683-4483
fax (757) 683-5954


Politics - Introduction

This guide describes the collections relating to local, state, and national politics housed in the Special Collections of Old Dominion University Library. The majority of the collections concern the activities of prominent Norfolk politicians campaigning for office or serving in an official capacity, either locally, in the General Assembly, or in the executive branch of the state government. Other collections relate to the activities of Virginians participating in politics, but not running for office. The collections span two centuries with the bulk of the material relating to twentieth century Virginia state politics. Included in these collections are correspondence, committee reports and minutes, reports of state agencies, legislative files, government publications, bills, resolutions, campaign material, speeches, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, artifacts, videotapes, and audiotapes. Materials document national, state and local issues of concern and reflect the attitudes of citizens of Virginia and Norfolk on these issues. These collections generally do not contain personal papers, but are the office papers from campaigns and terms of office.

The entries are arranged alphabetically, including the collection number, the inclusive dates of the collection and the collection's size. Please note the collection number because it acts as the location code. Electronic finding aids are available where highlighted. All other finding aids are available in the repository.


MG 62 Mason C. Andrews (1919- ). 38 Hollinger Document Cases.

Physician, former city council member and mayor of Norfolk. Served on Norfolk city council from 1974 to 2000 and as the city's mayor from 1992-1994. Was instrumental in the development of the Eastern Virginia Medical School complex and the redevelopment of downtown Norfolk. The collection includes personal, business, and political papers spanning the years 1932-1997.

MG 17 Peter K. Babalas Papers, 1943-1978. 1 Hollinger Box.

Represented the 5th District in the Virginia State Senate from 1967-1987. Collection includes legislative files, speeches, copies of bills introduced, correspondence, news releases, newspaper clippings, studies, and reports. The material chiefly relates to banking legislation, the Industrial Development and Revenue Bond Act, Parimutuel betting, and studies concerning the port of Hampton Roads during his service as a State Senator from 1972-1979. Noteworthy is the platform Babalas released during his candidacy for state senate in 1965.

MG 6 Benjamin Banks Papers, 1900-1974. 18 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Papers include correspondence, letters to the editor, speeches and newspaper clippings that span many years and document national, state and local politics throughout the twentieth century. The material contains information on Banks' service on the Norfolk Board of Alderman (1908-1911) and in the Virginia House of Delegates (1911-1913), as well as his support for various politicians throughout his life. Collection documents Banks' attempts to promote a better understanding between the Jewish and Christian communities, reflects his attitudes on issues, candidates and elections, contains information on Norfolk's municipal elections, and the founding of the Citizen's Democratic League. Of particular note are the numerous letters to the editor in which Banks dealt with a wide range of topics from Prohibition and the Ku Klux Klan to Vietnam and Watergate. Contains issues of the Galaxy, a literary magazine that Banks edited and published from 1908-1913. Correspondents included Woodrow Wilson, Harry F. Byrd Sr., Richard Evelyn Byrd, A. Willis Robertson, Norman Hamilton, Colgate Darden, W. Fred Duckworth, Westmoreland Davis, and James H. Price.

MG 58 Hugh Lee Butler Papers, 1899-1940. 1 Hollinger Box.

Including correspondence, pamphlets, brochures, official reports, business papers newspapers, and a scrapbook, this collection chiefly relates to Butler's service on the Norfolk City Council during the 1930s and reflect the concerns of citizens regarding various issues affecting Norfolk during the Depression. An issue of particular concern was the possible installation of parking meters downtown and the citizens' reaction to this proposal. Also of importance is the annual report of the Norfolk Police Court for 1936, the semi-annual report of the Norfolk-Portsmouth Industrial Commission for 1936, correspondence relating to the proposed establishment of the Atlantic Coast Fleet, and business papers relating to the Seaboard Air Line Railway Co. where Butler worked as a Freight Traffic Representative. Noteworthy are Butler's activities as chairman of the Local Draft Board No. 1 during World War I and the military's attempt after the war to apprehend and convict potential draft dodgers. Collection also contains brochures and pamphlets advertising the attractions of Norfolk and surrounding areas and the commercial and trade benefits of the city, plus an issue of the Vigilant, Norfolk's police magazine, dated December 1931.

MG 78 Paul G. Caplan (1918-2003). 65 Hollinger document cases, and four oversized boxes.

Norfolk pharmacist. Chaired the board of the Norfolk Port and Industrial Authority, which runs Norfolk International Terminals and the Norfolk International Airport, for thirteen years and was a board member from 1962 to 1987. Served on several political campaign committees, including those of Roy B. Martin and Stanley Walker. Was very active in civic affairs, including the Norfolk Junior Chamber of Commerce, Virginia Jaycees, United States Jaycees, Tidewater Chapter of the American Red Cross, Norfolk Jewish Community Council, and the Virginia Zoological and Aquarium Society.

MG 63 John Paul Carter 1923-1997. 1 Hollinger Document Case.

Episcopal priest, active in Virginia Democratic Politics. Served on the Committee for Fair Redistricting, Airlie Foundation, and the Virginia Political Study Group. Was active in Henry Howell's political campaigns. The collection includes papers on political issues in Virginia during the 1960's and 1970's.

MG 45 William Fred Duckworth, 1899-1972. 2 Hollinger Boxes and 9 Oversize Boxes.

Mayor of Norfolk (1950-1962). Collection consists of memorabilia, photographs, scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, and artifacts relating to his political, business and civic activities.

MG 60 Edythe C. Harrison, 1979-1984. 35 Hollinger Boxes.

Founder of the Virginia Opera Association and member of the Virginia House of Delegates (1979-1982). First woman from Virginia nominated to seek state-wide office for United States Senator against Republican incumbent, John Warner, in 1984. Collection consists primarily of campaign material from her unsuccessful candidacy in 1984. Other aspects of interest are her involvement with V.O.I.C.E. (Virginians Organized For Informed Community Expression), a pro-choice organization, and her service on the Subcommittee of Vocational, Technical, and Career Education and in the Virginia Foundation for Business and Education.

MG 70 James Bertram Haugh 1975-1978. 6 Hollinger Document Cases.

Old Dominion University Sociology Professor. Received his Ph.D. from the University of Akron in 1978. Author of the book, "Power and Influence in a Southern City." Based on his doctoral thesis, the book explores the power structure of a "Colonial City", which is actually the city of Norfolk, Virginia. The Collection relates mainly to his thesis. It includes rough drafts, notes, tapes and transcripts of interviews with prominent Norfolk figures in 1978.

MG 1 Henry E. Howell, Jr., 1948-1977. 266 Hollinger Document Cases and 35 Hollinger Boxes.

A longtime liberal Democrat in a largely conservative state, Howell ran unsuccessfully for Governor of Virginia three times, 1969, 1973, and 1977. Served in both the House of Delegates (1960-1962, 1964-1966) and the State Senate (1966-1971) and also as Lieutenant Governor (1971-1973). The papers of Howell constitute the largest collection in the Special Collections Department of Old Dominion University and document his personal, political, legislative, and legal activities from 1948 through 1977. Political papers deal with his activities, first in Norfolk, Virginia, and, after 1968, on the statewide level in political campaigns and Democratic party affairs. Bulk of material consists of campaign material, including correspondence, newspaper clippings, pictorial and sound records, file cards, and speeches, from his own campaigns for office, especially those for Governor in 1969, 1973, and 1977, and for Lt. Governor in 1971. Legislative papers include correspondence and reference material relating to his activities as a Delegate and State Senator. Legal papers consist largely of briefs and correspondence pertaining to lawsuits regarding the poll tax, legislative reapportionment, and the use of federal impact funds. Of note are the State Corporation Commission hearings and related court suits regarding requests for rate increases by public utilities and insurance companies.

MG 7 Robert Morton Hughes Papers, 1767-1954. 39 Hollinger Flat Boxes, 5 Hollinger Oversized Boxes, and Additional Bound Volumes.

Contains correspondence, speeches, literary efforts, and newspapers clippings related to Hughes' legal practice, his involvement in Virginia political affairs, and his activities in support of education. Noteworthy are the records relating to his service on the Virginia Constitutional Commission of 1926-1927, his longtime association with the College of William and Mary (1870-1940) and his service on the State Board of Education (1930-1935). Of particular importance is campaign material from Hughes' unsuccessful bids for election to the House of Representatives from Virginia's 2nd Congressional District in 1902 and 1904 and his stance on the constitutionality of Franklin D. Roosevelt's bid to "pack" the Supreme Court during the Depression. Correspondents include William Lamb, R. Walton Moore, John Garland Pollard, Douglas Southall Freeman, Benjamin Ewell, Earl Gregg Swem, and Harry F. Byrd, Sr. A significant aspect of this collection is the papers of Hughes' relatives: John B. Floyd (1806-1863), Joseph E. Johnston (1807-1891), and Robert W. Hughes (1821-1901). The papers of Floyd and Robert W. Hughes, Hughes' father, document the volatile political atmosphere of Virginia and the nation before, during, and after the Civil War. Floyd served as Governor of Virginia (1849-1852) and Secretary of War in the Buchanan administration (1857-1860). Robert W. Hughes was one of the first prominent Virginians to turn Republican after the Civil War much to the ire of friends and relatives. In 1869, William E. Cameron, a future Governor of Virginia (1882-1886), wrote a scathing editorial of Hughes in the Petersburg Index-Appeal. Hughes promptly challenged Cameron to a duel, which was fought on June 14, 1869. Collection contains correspondence and newspapers clippings documenting the duel in which Cameron was wounded and Hughes left unhurt. The papers of Hughes and his father provide researchers with an insight into the Virginia Republican party from Reconstruction to the mid-1900s.

MG 71 Augustus C. Johnson, 1914- 2006. 1 Hollinger Document Case.

Writer for "The Northern Virginia Sun". A collection of columns written by Johnson from September 1970 through December 1971. The columns relate primarily to the politics of Virginia's 10th congressional district. Personalities discussed in them include Joel T. Broyhill, Henry E. Howell, George Rawlings, Harry F. Byrd, Jr., William B. Spong, Linwood Holton and Mills Godwin.

MG 98 The Massive Resistance Printed Materials 1958-1960.

Consists of 20 folders of regional and national newspaper clippings covering the “Massive Resistance” movement and public reaction to the de-segregation and subsequent closing of some of Norfolk’s public schools. Also discussed are state and local politicians such as Governor Lindsay Almond, Jr., who ordered the closing the Norfolk schools that enrolled African American students, and Mayor William Fred Duckworth, who opposed de-segregating the public schools. Some of the clippings discuss the fate of those students whose graduation was put in jeopardy by the school closing, known as "The Lost Class of '59."

MG 42 McCurdy Historical Tapes Collection, 1978-1979. 1 Hollinger Box.

Dennis McCurdy was a radio news broadcaster for WPMH News and Public Affairs. Collection contains reel to reel audiotapes of interviews, speeches, and press conferences relating to politics and politicians. Includes speeches and interviews of Henry Howell, Andrew Pickens Miller, G. Conoly Phillipps, Pat Robertson, Chuck Robb, and Gerald R. Ford. Two tapes of note are a press conference of United States Senator S.I. Hayakawa from California in which he discusses the energy crisis of the late 1970s and the SALT Treaty, and a press conference of Ronald Reagan in Roanoke, Virginia during his campaign for the Presidency in 1979.

MG 4 Thomas R. McNamara Papers, 1968-1976. 78 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Collection is principally the records of his service in the Virginia General Assembly as a member of the House of Delegates (1968-1971) and the Senate (1972-1976). Material includes correspondence, reports, speeches, copies of bills, minutes, government publications, and newspaper clippings. Of particular note are the legislative papers containing a substantial number of publications of state agencies, e.g., annual reports, reports of legislative study commissions and Virginia Advisory Legislative Council Reports, and correspondence with constituents, officials of Tidewater local governments and professional organizations. Also of note are the files of the State Water Control Board. These files are not the official records of the board, but include McNamara's correspondence as a member of the board , staff communications, staff activities reports, letter ballots, minutes of meetings, publications distributed to members of the board and newspapers clippings related to the board's activities. The collection also contains speeches delivered from 1967 to 1973 and briefs relating to the Virginia reapportionment cases.

MG 64 Beverly Randolph Middleton (1928-1996). 3 Document Cases and 1 Oversize Box

Engineer and Virginia State Delegate. Served three terms in the Virginia House of Delegates. Most of the collection pertains to his political career. Also included is material related to his days as a student athlete at Norview High School and VPI.

MG 15 George Conoly Phillips Papers, 1957-1981. 4 Hollinger Boxes.

Includes material on Phillips' business, political, and civic activities. Contains correspondence with Virginia's Senators and Congressmen and state officials in the General Assembly concerning the Clean Air Act of 1970 and its impact on the automobile industry, and Senate Bill 2237 concerning labor unions. Of note are the files pertaining to his service as President of the United Drug Abuse Council and his involvement with the Inter-Varsity Christian Fellowship, the Christian Broadcasting Network, and the United Community Fund.

MG 8 Thomas Joseph Reilly Papers, 1925-1976. 5 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Political correspondent for the Norfolk Ledger-Star and Norfolk Ledger-Dispatch for twenty-six years. Primarily consists of newspaper columns from the Ledger-Star dealing with state and local politics, especially the sessions of the Virginia General Assembly. Of particular note is the background material used to prepare certain columns and state publications including Election Results (1924-1973), and Manuals of the Senate and the House of Delegates (1950-1974).

MG 2 Colonel James W. Roberts Papers, 1951, 1963-1964. 8 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Represented Norfolk from 1948 to 1968 in the Virginia House of Delegates. Papers consist primarily of legislative correspondence for the period 1963-1964. Also, includes publications issued by agencies of state government and a two volume study, Debates Constitutional Convention 1901-1902 Virginia.

MG 82 Edward L. Schrock (1941-). 34 Hollinger Document Cases, 25 Preservation Binders, and 5 Card Boxes.

Served on the U.S. House of Representative for the 2nd Congressional District of Virginia from January 2001 to January 2005. His political and voting record is aligned closely with the Republican Party. Materials in this collection date from 1999 to 2004. They include constituent feedback in the form of letters, postcards, surveys, and public opinion ballots. Also included are other correspondence and reference material related to various issues and legislation and materials related to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Small Business.

MG 16 Paul T. Schweitzer, 1903-1976. 3Hollinger Documents Cases and 1 Hollinger Drop-Front Print Box.

Norfolk businessman and member of the Norfolk School Board (1952-1960) and City Council (1960-1968) during the Massive Resistance crisis. Includes correspondence, legal documents, newspapers clippings, scrapbooks and photographs that primarily document his activities during Norfolk's desegregation crisis. See guide to desegregation of the Norfolk Schools for more detail.

MG 52 W.B. Shafer, Jr. 1895-1990. 9 Hollinger Document Cases, and 1 Oversize Box.

Long time Norfolk native. Made his fortune in real estate and spent his life promoting humanitarian and idealistic causes. Ran unsuccessfully for Norfolk City Council in 1928 and 1966 and lost a bid for the House of Representatives in 1944. Honorary member of the Veterans of Foreign Affairs in recognition for his successful push to have bonuses paid to World War I veterans. Author of 3 Books That Made the South And 1000 Millionaires and 10 Billionaires, Go South Young Man, and Go South Where God Still Lives. Bought newspaper space to promote his projects and ideas. Includes correspondence, copies of The Spotlight, newspaper clippings, rough drafts of his writings, and photographs.

MG 10 General James W. Singleton, 1770-1975. 35 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Collection consists of family papers spanning the lifetime of five generations of Singleton descendants. Bulk of material dates from 1810 until 1940, principally concerning the lives of James Singleton, James W. Singleton and Lily Singleton Thomas Osburn. Includes correspondence, legal and government documents, financial and bookkeeping records, business papers, military papers, speeches, memorabilia, newspapers clippings, publications and photographs. Of note are the papers concerning James W. Singleton's activities during the Civil War as a Peace Democrat and his efforts toward the end of that war to secure peace with the Confederate States. Collection contains correspondence and speeches from Singleton's service in the House of Representatives as a Democrat from Illinois (1879 to 1883). Noteworthy is a file of correspondence from the years 1884-1885, during which Singleton sought a position in Grover Cleveland's administration as Commissioner of Agriculture.

MG 19 A.E.S. Stephens Papers, 1949-1961. 6 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Served in the General Assembly and the Executive Branch of the state government from 1929-1961: House of Delegates (1929-1941), State Senate (1941-1952), Lieutenant Governor (1952-1961). Papers primarily consist of material relating to his unsuccessful campaign for Governor of Virginia from December 1960, until his loss to Albertis Harrison in the Democratic primary in July 1961, including correspondence, speeches, biographical material, reference material, photographs, and newspaper clippings. Campaign material reflects his stance on various campaign issues, and the frustrations of his attempt to win the Democratic nomination against the opposition of the Byrd Organization. Also of interest is the material relating to Massive Resistance to racial integration in Virginia schools dating back to the early 1950s. This collection contains neither private papers, nor the records of his service in the General Assembly or as Lieutenant Governor.

MG 56 Virginia House of Delegates, 1982. 78 ¾ inch videotapes.

Contains videotapes, dating from January 13 to March 13, 1982, of the House of Delegates in session.

MG 28 Stanley C. Walker Papers, 1964-1976. 24 Hollinger Boxes.

Served in the Virginia House of Delegates from 1964-1971 and has represented the 6th district in the Virginia State Senate from 1972 to the present. Chiefly consists of material relating to his service in the Virginia State Senate. Includes campaign material, correspondence, bills, and speeches. Of particular note are the records of Walker's service on the State Crime Commission and information on General Assembly sessions.

MG 5 Forrest P. White, 1952-1963. 3 Hollinger Documents Cases.

Member of the Norfolk Committee for Public Schools and active in the effort to reopen Norfolk's closed public schools during the era of Massive Resistance. Bulk of material concerns the desegregation crisis in Norfolk. Also, contains material relating to the 1952 Byrd-Miller Democratic Senatorial primary, the races for the 1960 Norfolk City Council, and the 1961 Citizens for Democratic Government campaign in the Norfolk's Democratic primary.

MG 24 J. Warren White, Jr. Papers, 1974-1979. 25 Hollinger Documents Cases and 4 Hollinger Boxes.

Collection consists primarily of correspondence, legislative records and reference material from his service in the Virginia House of Delegates from 1974 to 1979. Material of particular note are the folders concerning the Equal Rights Amendment, the Sunday Closing Laws, and Parimutuel gambling. Also, contains correspondence regarding financial support for Old Dominion University from the General Assembly.

MG 86 G. William Whitehurst (1925-). 5 Hollinger Document Cases and 6 Oversize Boxes

Elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Virginia’s Second District in 1968. Member of the House Armed Services Committee, Committee on Intelligence and Ethics Committee. Consists of nineteen bound Congressional dairies spanning from 1969 to 1986. Six scrap books consisting of newspaper clippings, magazines, pictures and other documents relating to Doctor William Whitehurst’s tenure in the House of Representatives.

MG 3 Joseph Downing Wood, 1920-1951. 18 Hollinger Documents Cases.

President of the Wood Towing Company (Tugboats) and served on the Norfolk City Council (1926-1930, 1934-1944) and as Mayor (1940-1944) during World War II. Collection is divided into five sub-groups: personal, public service (non-political), business, mayoral files, and city of Norfolk data. Personal papers contain some family genealogy, correspondence, his autobiography, and a variety of financial records. Public service records deal primarily with his service on the Elizabeth River Tunnel Commission while the business papers consist of correspondence, tug repair estimates and labor relations files. The bulk of the mayoral files are correspondence and the city of Norfolk material focuses on financial data which is not duplicated by material found at Norfolk City Hall.

Revised: 9/2/2009