Dr. Michael Smith Collection of George Wallace Memorabiila
Scope and Contents
This collection contains political memorabilia relating to George Wallace's presidential campaigns in the 1960s and 1970s. He was the American Presidential Party nominee in 1968 and a candidate for the Democratic Party nomination in 1972, and 1976. Items include campaign buttons, an autographed pamphlet, two audio records, and a large campaign sign.
- circa 1964-1976
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research use.
Copyright retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Biographical / Historical
George Corley Wallace was born on August 25, 1919 in Clio, Alabama. He graduated from the University of Alabama Law School in 1942 and went on to serve in World War II. He held a judgeship in the Third Judicial Circuit of Alabama from 1953-1959, and in 1958, when he lost the Democratic nomination for Alabama governor to a Ku Klux Klan-endorsed segregationist, he reversed his previously moderate stance on integration. When he ran again in 1962 on a strong segregation platform, his campaign was successful and he was elected governor. He maintained this staunch stance among schools attempting integration throughout Alabama, preventing black students from attending, most notably at the University of Alabama in 1963.
After failing to secure a nomination for the presidency in 1964, Wallace was a candidate in the 1968 election, running as part of the anti-liberal third-party, American Independent Party. He was defeated by incumbent president Lyndon B. Johnson, but still managed to win five Southern states and 13% of the overall vote. He was again elected as Alabama's governor in 1970 and 1974. In 1972 and 1976, he unsuccessfully campaigned for the presidential nomination, this time as a Democratic candidate. During the 1972 campaign, he was shot in an assassination attempt and left paralyzed from the waist down.
During the 1980s, Wallace rejected his previous segregationist ideals and worked to stand with civil rights leaders for important racial causes. Through their support, he won the governorship a final time in 1982 with a large portion of the black vote. In 1987, due to failing health, he retired from politics. Wallace died in Montgomery, Alabama on September 13, 1998.
.5 Linear Feet (Contains 1 LP box and 1 map case folder)
Source of Acquisition
This collection was donated by Dr. Michael Smith on August 24, 2011.
- Dr. Michael Smith Collection of George Wallace Memorabilia
- Special Collections Staff
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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