Chronicling UA’s First Steps Toward Desegregation

Sixty years ago, the first major step was made toward desegregating the University of Alabama. Autherine Lucy, a black woman from Shiloh, Alabama, was enrolled – and a few days later suspended, eventually expelled, though she had done nothing wrong.

We tend to focus on 1963, on the bizarre segregationist pageantry of the Stand in the Schoolhouse Door, perhaps because it was ultimately unsuccessful. This week, we want to focus on something harder to take in but just as important to remember: when segregation unfortunately won.

In addition to this post, see the entry on our sister blog for the digital archives unit: February 1956: When the Eyes of the World Were on Us.

Hoole Library holds several collections related to the Autherine Lucy enrollment controversy. They range from published materials to photos and manuscripts to University Archives.

The Editor’s View

Buford Boone was editor of the Tuscaloosa News from 1947 to 1968, so he was witness to both attempts at integrating the University. Throughout the Lucy incident, Boone wrote editorials hailed across the country for their opposition to mob rule and racism. His most widely republished was this short editorial. (Click the image to see a larger version.)


In 1957, he won a Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing for his coverage of the events. He was also involved in bringing to light the activities of the Ku Klux Klan.

Hoole has a large collection of his materials (Buford Boone papers, MSS.0187), including copies of these editorials and the responses of readers around the community and the U.S. According to the finding aid,

This collection will be of great interest to anyone investigating the history of civil rights in Alabama in particular, or the South in general.  Mr. Boone published the only newspaper in town from 1947-1974, and thus controlled information flow to a very great extent.  His papers are interesting as a study of a man who had convictions and stuck by these convictions even in the face of certain unpleasant consequences.

In addition to the Boone materials, Hoole also has copies of the Tuscaloosa News from that period, as well as other Alabama periodicals, which can be found in the UA Libraries catalog.

The Camera’s Eye

Images of Autherine Lucy can be found in the University’s official collection of images, but two photographers who were there during Lucy’s entrance and the subsequent riots also donated to us their photos. It is conjectured that these men may have been employed as photographers with the University or the local media.

The 6 photographs in the Don Sanford photograph collection (2010.021) show Lucy walking and talking with others.


Though they are likely staged, they at least focus on Lucy herself.

The 23 photographs in the James William Oakley Jr. photograph collection (2010.020) chronicle the protests, both on campus and in downtown Tuscaloosa.


They feature white people engaging in demonstration and vandalism, with no African American faces to be seen.

The World’s Reaction

During and after the events of February 1956, UA President Oliver Carmichael was in an unenviable position. His papers (President Oliver C. Carmichael, RG.013) make up part of the University Archives, and they are open to the public.

In them, among other things, you’ll find Accession #19820768, which contains three entire boxes of correspondence received from people at home and abroad. They reflect a range of opinions on everything from segregation to the students’ violent behavior to Carmichael’s handling of the situation. Here are some examples. (Click any image below to see a larger version.)

Radical South Zine Archive

magazine; especially: a noncommercial often homemade or online publication usually devoted to specialized and often unconventional subject matter

If you’ve never heard of zines, this is a good definition to start with, but it doesn’t really capture the wild world that’s out there. In many ways, zines are natural additions to an archive — personal, of the moment, and unique.

The 60 or so items in the Radical South Zine Archive at Hoole Library range over so many subjects that a full list would be even longer than the list of the publications themselves. In these handmade pieces, you’ll find reflections on art, music, and popular culture. You’ll also hear  people’s thoughts about themselves and society, and the messy intersections in between, like race and ethnicity, religion and spirituality, and gender and sexuality. What’s fascinating about these zines is how they are often both highly personal and highly political — and most of them very much a product of the South.

Here’s a sampling of titles, with descriptions where they were provided by the author. (Click on any image to see a larger version.) Heads up: these writers pull no punches, even on their covers.

For more information about these and other titles, check out the collection’s finding aid.


New Finding Aids, Spring 2016, part one

As a welcome back to campus, we’re sharing some of the collection finding aids that have recently gone online in Acumen — over 100 last month!

This week, the highlights focus on the community: businesses, churches and other organizations, and community life. (Click on any of the images below to see a larger version.)

Guide to the Reward Notice collection

Reward notice from manuscript collection 1188

Contains a collection of reward notices posted in Alabama for persons wanted for crimes committed in Alabama and other states. Various formats of notices are represented, including broadsides, letters, postcards, and telegrams. A large number of them are not dated.

Guide to the Selma and Meridian Railroad ledger and journal 

Two corporate account books for the Selma and Meridian Railroad, 1885: the ledger, which details payments and receipts by date; and the journal, which records them by firm or individual.

Guide to the Tennessee Coal, Iron and Railroad Company documents

MSS1392_agreement-and-handbookA miscellany of materials relating to the Tennessee Coal, Iron, and Railway Company’s Fairfield Steelworks, later a part of the United States Steel Company’s industrial empire.

Guide to the Republic Steel records

This collection contains correspondence, security and insurance records, and other materials of this Birmingham steel company.

Guide to the Julian Lee Rayford papers

Portion of a newspaper pageArticles and other writings of this Mobile, Alabama, artist, journalist, folklorist, and muralist who was known for his work to increase awareness of Mobilian Joe Cain who revived Mardi Gras after the Civil War.

Guide to the Harry Mell Ayers papers

Contains the correspondence of this New Deal Democrat and Civil Rights supporter who owned the newspaper, the Anniston Star. The correspondence deals with local, state, and national political campaigns, elections, education, civil rights, editorials, letters to the editor, and events of the times.

Guide to the Grant’s Creek Baptist Church Record

Ledger page from Grant's Creek Baptist ChurchThe collection contains one notebook recording the names of members of Grant’s Creek Baptist Church, located in Fosters, Alabama, the date they joined the church, were baptized, and, in some instances, when they were dismissed, excluded, restored, and died.

Guide to the Sardis Baptist Church, Heiberger, Alabama, records

This collection contains records, 1846-1951, including lists of members, pastors, dismissals, and minutes of monthly meetings, as well as a short history of the church. Baptist church in Heiberger, Perry County, Alabama, established 1846.

Guide to the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons Collection

Roll card for the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of Marion, AlabamaThe collection contains twenty-one annual return reports, 1908-1930, of the Temple Lodge, number 425, of the Ancient Free and Accepted Masons of Alabama, at Marion in Perry County.

Guide to the Ku Klux Klan Pamphlet

The collection contains one pamphlet with the names of Tuscaloosa (Alabama) residents who “signed the petition sent to Governor [George] Wallace,” presumably regarding the integration of the University of Alabama, and the names of the employers of the signers.

Guide to the Quaker Club records

Pamphlet for the Quaker Club, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 1943-1944Minutes, yearbooks, members’ correspondence, newspaper clippings, photos, event programs, and scrapbooks of this Tuscaloosa, Alabama, young women’s civic organization.

Holiday Cooking

While many of the books at Hoole Library are old and/or rare, some are simply part of a special collection of materials which may include very recent publications. I like to think of them as rare books in training.

One kind of specialized resource we have a lot of is cookbooks. Soon, we’ll be mounting an exhibit with items from the Lupton Collection of African-American Cookbooks and from a donation made by Rev. Wylheme Ragland. However, we have cookbooks in just about every book collection at Hoole, especially the Wade Hall collection, which tends to focus on Southern foodways.

Today, we look at three of these cookbooks, reflecting three December holidays: Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa.

Three books stacked on top of each other, with cover titles visible: on bottom, Jewish Holiday Cooking; in the middle, Camille Glenn's Old Fashioned Christmas Cookbook; on top, A Kwanzaa Keepsake

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Remembering Dr. Wade Hall (1934-2015)

It’s been difficult putting together this post commemorating Wade Hall’s life and meditating on his legacy. It’s not because there’s nothing to say; in fact, it’s just the opposite.

“When I began working at the Hoole Library in 2001,” wrote Archivist Donnelly Walton, “I immediately heard about our donor Wade Hall. His name is everywhere here because he generously gave us a little (or a lot) of everything you can imagine would be in a special collections library: photographs, sheet music, books, LPs, 8-tracks, wax cylinders, quilts, and manuscripts.”

Wherever you look at Hoole, Wade is there. So how do you write a memorial for someone who will never really be gone? We decided to share memories of the man and reflect on the way his collections are so fundamental to the life of W. S. Hoole Library.

Many thanks to those who contributed their thoughts, especially Amy Chen, former CLIR postdoctoral fellow, who has allowed me to quote from her forthcoming book, Miracle and Mystery: A Guide to the Wade Hall Collection.

You’ll notice that we tend to refer to Wade by his first name – probably because he was and always will be part of the Hoole family.

Continue reading

American WWI Veterans

Spines of five novels, left to right, largest to smallest: Through the Wheat (dark blue), On Man's Initiation (camel brown), Soldiers' Pay (white), Company K (black), A Farewell to Arms (orange)This Veterans Day, we look at a largely forgotten American war: World War I. It’s easy to overlook because our official participation was short and our losses paled in comparison to that of France, Germany, and Britain. However, thousands of Americans were involved in the war effort, both before and after our declaration, and some 116,000 lost their lives, many in the crucial final stages of the war.

Much of the way WWI has come into our cultural consciousness is through novels. Here are just a few of them we hold in our collections at Hoole Library, paired with similar archival resources.

Dos Passos, John. One Man’s Initiation — 1917. London, G. Allen & Unwin, 1920.

Cover shows embossed silhouette of an ambulance against a blue and orange sunset sky.

Ambulancing on the French Front, a 1918 account from Edward R. Coyle

Dos Passos went to war before America did, serving with the American Volunteer Motor Ambulance Corps in France and Italy, later in the U.S. Army Medical Corps. This novel was his first, after which he published the more famous Three Soldiers (1921), depicting the different war experiences of three very different men.

  • Hoole Library holds materials related to another American ambulance driver, Valentine J. Oldshue (MSS.1072): This collection contains newspaper articles about covering the peace negotiations in Paris after World War One, Memorial Day ceremonies at American cemeteries in the 1920s, letters, photographs, postcards from France and Albania, press credentials, and Oldshue’s dog tags. This collection is also online.

Boyd, Thomas. Through the Wheat. New York, Scribner’s, 1923.

Boyd was a journalist from Ohio. This novel draws on his own experiences serving in the Marine Corps in France.

  • Hoole Library holds papers relating to another soldier serving in France, George Waring Huston (MSS.0724): This collection contains correspondence, photographs, and other materials created by the Huston family in Selma, Dallas County, Alabama. Most materials center around George Waring Huston, who was killed in World War I. A large number of letters are from George Huston to his parents Nelle Smith Huston and R. Walter Huston while at Camp Gordon, Georgia. This collection is also online.

Faulkner, William. Soldiers’ Pay. New York: New American Library, 1968 [1926].

Cover of Soldiers' Pay, a 1929 novel by WIlliam Faulkner. Cover depicts a soldier wearing sunglasses, with a cross and smoke cloud in the background.Faulkner started his literary career with this novel about a returning veteran of the war. Though he trained as pilot with the Royal Canadian Air Force (having been too short to join the U.S. Army), he never saw combat. Perhaps that’s why he felt the need to write a novel speaking for those who had.

  • Hoole Library holds the papers of another man frustrated by his inability to make it to the front, Paoli Ashe Smith (MSS.1294): This collection consists mainly of personal correspondence from Smith to his mother during World War I, letters received from several of his cousins, financial and legal papers, and photographs. This collection is also online.

Hemingway, Ernest. A Farewell to Arms. New York: Bantam, 1949 [1929].

Hemingway, like Dos Passos, was also an ambulance driver, working with the Red Cross in Italy. That experience, including his wounding during a mortar attack, served as the backbone of this novel, which itself would be transformed into the 1996 film In Love and War.

  • Hoole Library holds materials relating to the service of another Red Cross worker in Italy, Victor Hugo Friedman (MSS.0545): The collection contains Friedman’s personal and official correspondence, photographs of a camp in the Alps, his lieutenant’s commission, his Croce al Merito di Guerra and other military pins and ribbons, and various items issued to him by the military. Incoming correspondence is arranged alphabetically by author’s surname, and outgoing correspondence is arranged chronologically. This collection is also online.

March, William. Company K. New York: New American Library, 1958 [1933].

Cover of Company K, a 1933 novel by William March. Cover shows several soldiers in silhouette against a dark sky, with the title in orange taking up most of the page.March, born William Campbell, was a native of Mobile, Alabama. He served with honors in the Marine Corps, largely in France. Though he wrote many novels and short stories, among them The Bad Seed, this was his first and most enduring. It depicts the war from dozens of perspectives, from the patriotic to the pathetic.

  • Hoole Library holds some of March’s personal papers (MSS.0266): This collection consists of approximately 1100 items dating from from 1897 to 1980, including correspondence, literary productions (publications, manuscripts, notes, research), clippings (primarily reviews), criticism, photographs, memorabilia, and a bust of March.

Recent Acquisitions, Fall 2015

Here are some of our recent acquisitions, all with finding aids online.

Arthur Duncan papers (MSS.4153)

A copy of the first issue of The Open Post (v. 1, no. 1), the news organ of the 57th College Training Detachment of the Army Air Corps, based on the University of Alabama campus during World War II. Also included is a souvenir folder of the University in 1943.
Online finding aid

Thomas Wade Herren papers (MSS.4154)

Papers, correspondence, and photographs documenting the life and military career of Lieutenant General Thomas W. Herren of Dadeville, Alabama
Online finding aid

Stella Long postcard collection (MSS.4155)

Postcards to and from this Hamilton, Ontario, Canada native, as well as to and from her family and friends. There are also delegate and guest tickets to the Republican National Conventions of 1908 and 1916 held in Chicago, Illinois, and a travel brochure from Havana, Cuba.
Online finding aid

Mary Elizabeth Streit Preston papers (MSS.4156)

Typed account of one of the first Americans allowed to enter the U.S.S.R. in 1930, during the first “Five Year Plan.”
Online finding aid

Dall-Tardy letters (MSS.4157)

Letters from members of the Dall and Tardy families of Baltimore, Maryland, and Mobile, Alabama, written between 1840 and 1908.
Online finding aid

Michael Schwartz collection of Army of the Republic of Vietnam patches (MSS.4158)

Fifty-five military (airborne) patches from the Army of the Republic of Vietnam.
Online finding aid

A Little Bit Country, A Little Bit Rock ‘n’ Roll

When you collect Americana, you can’t help but end up with music — and books on music. In the case of Wade Hall, who focused his collecting on the South, that means a lot of country and western, jazz, blues, and rock ‘n’ roll.

Covers of autobiographies Coal Miner's Daughter and Lady Sings the BluesYou’re just as likely to find Loretta Lynn as Billie Holiday, both of whom featured in popular biopics in the ’70s and ’80s.

  • Holiday, Billie, and William Duffy. Lady Sings the Blues. New York: Lancer, 1972. Call Number: Wade Hall ML420.H58 A3 1972ax
  • Lynn, Loretta, and George Vecsey. Coal Miner’s Daughter. New York: Warner, 1980. Call Number: Wade Hall ML420.L947 A3 1980x

Looking for companion pieces? Try Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday at Newport, from the Wade Hall Sound Recording collection, LP 9652; or Coal Miner’s Daughter, from the Wade Hall Sound Recording collection, LP 12626.

Cover of Movin' on UpMusical biographies and autobiographies abound, like these on Mahalia Jackson, one by Jackson herself and another by someone else, written after her death.

  • Jackson, Mahalia, and Evan McLeod Wylie. Movin’ on Up. New York: Avon, 1969. Call Number: Wade Hall ML420.J17 A3 1969x
  • Goreau, Laurraine. Just Mahalia, Baby. Waco, TX: Word Books, 1975. Call Number: Wade Hall ML420.J17 G67

For a bit of Jackson’s music, try Mahalia! Sings the Gospel Right out of the Church, from the Wade Hall Sound Recordings collection, LP 120.

Early Jazz Greats, though mixed in with the books, is actually a set of trading cards. Each features an artist’s rendering and a short biography. (Call Number: Wade Hall ML87 .E37 1982x)

Louis Armstrong is featured in New Orleans to New York, a jazz album from the Wade Hall Sound Recordings collection, LP 12471.

Feel Like Going Home provides portraits, literal and figurative, of blues and rock ‘n’ roll pioneers. (Call Number: Wade Hall ML385.G95 1981)

For a blues record, give The Bessie Smith Story a try (Wade Hall Sound Recordings, LP 11894.)

Do you need a guide to what was hot in country music, circa 1993? (Country: The Essential CD Guide, Call Number: Wade Hall ML102.C7 H38 1993)

The Wade Hall Sound Recordings collection has CD’s, too, including Garth Brooks’s Double Live (CD 98) and Reba McEntire’s Rumor Has It (CD 64).

How about a pictorial history of the Mother Church of Country Music, up through the early 1960s? (Official WSM Grand Ole Opry History-Picture Book, Call Number: Wade Hall ML385.O4x v.2 no.2 1961)

All joking aside, the dated nature of some of these items is exactly why they’re good to collect: they capture a period in time that is receding from us, showcasing important figures that otherwise might disappear from the historical record.

They’re also just interesting, period. Honky-Tonk Heroes (Call Number: Wade Hall ML87 .R8 1975) presents portraits of major country stars in the 1970s. For example, it captures this moment with married superstars Tammy Wynette and George Jones — who were likely divorced by the time the book was published.

Image of Tammy Wynette and George Jones with small girl, 1975

The book covers a range of “honky tonk” stars, from Outlaws like Waylon Jennings to oddball Buck Owens, pioneer of the Bakersfield sound, to the inimitable Dolly Parton.

The book was named for an album by Loretta Lynn and frequent duet partner Conway Twitty. You can find their Honky Tonk Heroes in the Wade Hall Sound Recordings collection, LP 9647. If you prefer, look up George and Tammy’s duet album We Go Together, LP 12927.


The Bad, Bad Girls of Pulp Art

Not a lot of rare book collections boast as many paperbacks as we have. That’s mostly for good reasons — they’re not collectible editions, and they’re much more fragile than hardback volumes. But those collections don’t know what they’re missing. Paperback books can also tell the story of the culture that produced them, and it’s often a different story than their more built-to-last brethren.

Today, we’re going to take a look at the sexed-up art that began to invade paperbacks in the 1930s. Taking their cues from the covers of pulp magazines — those cheap vehicles of sensational mystery, horror, and sci-fi stories — they used dramatic descriptions and attention-grabbing images, often of scantily clad women, to sell novels in a variety of genres. These examples range from 1947 to 1961, the height of the pulp epidemic.

Click on any image below to see a larger version.

Mystery and Detective Fiction

Since a lot of mystery and hard-boiled detective fiction writers wrote for pulp magazines, and some of their novels actually began their lives as short stories in those publications, dangerous women make a really reasonable choice for cover art.

Chandler, Raymond. Pick-up on Noon Street. New York: Pocket Books, 1952. [First published as collection, including the title story, “Smart-Alec Kill,” “Guns at Cyrano,” and “Nevada Gas.”] Call number: PS3505.H3224 P5 1952.

Gardner, Erle Stanley. The Case of the Baited Hook. New York: Pocket Books, 1947. [First published 1940.] Call number: PS3513.A6322 C19 1947.

Cain, James M. Shameless. New York: Avon, 1951. [First published 1951, as The Root of His Evil.] Call number: PS3505.A3113 S4 1951x.


Stories of crime and suspense also made a natural partnership with pulp art.

Cohen, Octavus Roy. Love Has No Alibi. New York: Popular Library, 1948. [First published 1946.] Call number: PS3505.O2455 L6 1945b.

Deal, Borden. Killer in the House. New York: New American Library, 1957. Call number: PS3554.E13 K4.

Clayton, John Bell. Six Angels at My Back. New York: Popular Library, 1953. [First published 1952.] Call number: PS3553.L386 S59 1953.

Bad Girls

It’s not entirely clear what genre these books are, which apparently isn’t the point. The point is, they’re scandalous!

Glendinning, Richard. Too Fast We Live. New York, Popular Library 1954. Call number: PS3557.L445 T66 1954x.

Willingham, Calder. The Girl in the Dogwood Cabin. New York: New American Library, 1961. [First published 1955, as To Eat a Peach.] Call number: PS3573.I4565 G5 1956x.

Gwaltney, Francis Irby. The Whole Town Knew. New York: Popular Library, 1956. [First published 1954, as The Yeller-Headed Summer.] Call number: PS3557.W3 W4 1955x.

The Scandalous South

The South proved a very fertile ground for stories of passion and scandal.

Slaughter, Frank G. Storm Haven. New York: Permabooks, 1955. [First published 1953.] Call number: PS3537.L38 S7 1955x.

Basso, Hamilton. Sun in Capricorn. New York: Popular Library, 1961. [First published 1942.] Call number: PS3503.A8423 S96 1942x.

Caldwell, Erskine. God’s Little Acre. New York: New American Library, 1961. [First published 1933.] Call number: PS3505.A322 G6 1961x.

Southern Literature in Disguise

Literary fiction was not immune. Comparatively speaking, these covers are tame, but they still exaggerate the tone of these novels. The only one that deals with sex, Sanctuary, is less salacious than simply disturbing.

Warren, Robert Penn. At Heaven’s Gate. New York: New American Library, 1949. [First published 1943.] Call number: PS3545.A748 A8 1949bx.

Faulkner, William. Sanctuary. New York: New American Library, 1951. [First published 1931.] Call number: PS3511.A86 S3 1931bx. [synopsis]

O’Connor, Flannery. Wise Blood. New York: New American Library, 1953. [First published 1952.] Call number: PS3565.C57 W5 1953x.

Find Out More

All the books seen above can be found at Hoole Library (in Scout, limit by Location), specifically within the Wade Hall Collection. Dr. Hall’s interest in the South, coupled with his tendency to collect on the basis of popular culture as much as academic value, make his collection a treasure trove of paperbacks of all sorts and their often curious art. Most of the examples above come from the New American Library or Popular Library (in Scout, limit by Publisher).

If you’d like to know more about any of these authors, they have profiles in the Dictionary of Literary Biography, a database available to UA students, faculty, and staff via the Libraries website.

Dr. Wade Henry Hall, Jr. (1934-2015)

We’re sad to report the passing of our friend, Wade Hall, on Saturday.

Having grown up with so little, Wade made it his mission to give as much as possible to others. Though he was born and raised in Bullock County, Alabama, and would eventually return there, he also lived for over four decades in Kentucky, while he taught at Bellarmine University. He was a prolific scholar and writer, producing creative works as well as teasing out the rich history of Southern literature and culture, particularly from his home and adopted states. Of course, we know him best as a collector, one whose instinct for finding the value in the ordinary as well as in the extraordinary was unparalleled.

Not only was he a collector, but he was also a generous donor. We’ll have a tribute post here in the days to come, with a more complete account of his impact on UA Libraries Special Collections. For now, you can get a small sense of his legacy by looking at the dozens of blog posts that reference his collections. Sometimes, they stand out and draw the focus, but just as often these materials are simply part of the tapestry of our archive — an integral part, the warp that makes the weaving possible.