UNC Charlotte Special Collections J. Murrey Atkins Library - Special Collections & University Archives

Alexander (Kelly), Sr. Papers Concerning the NAACP Edit

Summary

Identifier
MS0508
Finding Aid Date
2015
Description Rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of Description
Finding aid written in English

Dates

  • 1911-1997 (Creation)

Extents

  • 33 Linear Feet (Whole)
    29 boxes

Agent Links

Subjects

Notes

  • Abstract

    Papers documenting the activities of the NAACP, with an emphasis on the work and correspondence of Kelly Alexander, Sr. and his sons Kelly Alexander, Jr. and Alfred Alexander. Includes papers from the National Board, the North Carolina chapter and the Charlotte chapter. Contains minutes, correspondence, reports, speeches, press releases, membership records, photographs, and memorabilia. Topics covered include school segregation, housing and employment discrimination and the Charlotte Area Fund.

  • Historical Note

    The NAACP was founded in 1909 in Springfield, Illinois in response to the vast number of lynchings taking place throughout the state at the time. To combat this high level of violence against African-Americans, a group of white liberals called for a meeting to discuss racial justice. They were supported by many of the leaders of the African-American community at the time, including W.E.B. DuBois and Ida Wells-Barnett. In the beginning, the organization sought to guarantee the rights promised to all Americans in the 13th, 14th and 15th Amendments, including the equal protection of the law and universal adult male suffrage. The NAACP served to advance the interests of all minority citizens in the country, not only African-Americans. By 1919, the organization had grown from a small group of founders to around 90,000 and had established itself as a strong legal advocate for equality and justice. The NAACP’s groundbreaking report, “Thirty Years of Lynching in the United States, 1889-1919” helped spark a public debate that greatly decreased the amount of lynchings in the country. Walter White became the President in 1930 and began a long period of legal advocacy that included the Margold Report, which established the legal basis for overturning the “separate-but-equal” doctrine that had governed the country since 1896. White’s tenure also saw cooperation with white labor unions that helped many African-Americans earn jobs. After helping to better the economic situation of minorities, the NAACP turned its attention towards ending segregation and securing civil rights for all. They successfully ended federal enforcement of school segregation in 1954 when Thurgood Marshall won the landmark Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. Ten years later, President Lyndon Johnson would sign into law the Civil Rights Act that eliminated discrimination based on race, gender, religion or national origin. In the early 21st century, the NAACP has largely focused its attention on ending disparities in economics, health care, education and the criminal justice system. It has been a very important organization for over one hundred years and impacted many of the most significant civil rights court cases and legislation of the twentieth century.

  • Scope and Contents

    The collection contains material generated by various NAACP figures, including Kelly Alexander, Roy Wilkins, Benjamin Hooks, Benjamin Chavis, Clarence Mitchell, Kivie Kaplan and Myrlie Evers-Williams. The material is related to the NAACP's work at the National, State (North Carolina) and local (Charlotte) level. Contains minutes, correspondence, reports, speeches, press releases, membership records, photographs, and memorabilia. Topics covered include school segregation, housing and employment discrimination, and the Charlotte Area Fund. There is also a small amount of items on Zechariah Alexander's work with the Shriners and Masons. There is also a small amount of items on Zechariah Alexander’s work with the Shriners and Masons.

  • Arrangement

    Organized into six series: Series I. Addresses and Statements, 1948-1991. Series II. NAACP, Charlotte, 1952-1998. Series III. NAACP, North Carolina, 1936-1998. Series IV. NAACP, National, 1911-1997. Series V. Clippings and Printed Material, 1948-2001. Series VI. Awards and Memorabilia.

  • Language of Materials

    English

  • Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is open for research.

  • Conditions Governing Use

    The Kelly Alexander, Sr. papers concerning the NAACP are the physical property of J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives. Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

  • Related Materials

    J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives maintains several other collections from the Alexander Family:

    Kelly M. Alexander, Sr. papers (Mss 0555), Kelly Alexander, Sr. family papers, (Mss 0509), Kelly M. Alexander, Jr. papers (Mss 0233), Fred D. (Frederick Douglas) Alexander papers (Mss 0091) ǂa J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

  • Preferred Citation

    Kelly Alexander, Sr. papers concerning the NAACP, Mss 0508 J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, University of North Carolina at Charlotte.

  • Processing Information

    The collection was processed in 2015 by Andrew Pack, graduate student assistant.

  • Available Online

    A portion of the Kelly Alexander, Sr. papers concerning the NAACP have been digitized and are available online: http://digitalcollections.uncc.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/p16033coll20

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