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American Civil Liberties Union Papers, Part II: Southern Regional Office

Posted on by Nick Okrent

The ACLU’s Southern Regional Office, which was founded after the passing of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, used the provisions of the act, which made segregation in public accomodations unconstitutional, to address violations in the targeted areas of voters’ rights and racial discrimination. Its records offer researchers a unique view of the inner workings of the ACLU’s regional offices and the the organizations with which the ACLU collaborated with such as the NAACP.

The collection consists largely of case files but also contains a great deal of correspondence, memos, administrative files, personnel records, meeting minutes, and documents related to the office’s history that add depth and context to key legal decisions of the Civil Rights Movement.

The unique documents in this collection offer a new perspective for researchers and students to reevaluate narratives surrounding key areas of interdisiplinary twentieth century studies including U.S. social and legal history, American politics and government, African American history, southern studies, race studies, identity studies, Vietnam War and student protest, radicalism, and free speech.