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Collection Number: 05288

Collection Title: David Schenck Papers, 1953-1964

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Size 1.0 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 500 items)
Abstract Greensboro Mayor David Schenck was born on 7 January 1927 in Greensboro, N.C., and was the great-grandson of Judge David Schenck, a prominent 19th century lawyer and politician in Greensboro. Schenck received a bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University in 1947 and attended the business school at the University of North Carolina in 1948. In 1959, Schenck was elected to the Greensboro City Council where he served as chair of the Transportation Committee and later on the Mayor's Special Committee on Human Relations and Race Relations in 1960. On 8 May 1961, Schenck was elected mayor of Greensboro. He was reelected in 1963 and served until 1965. During his tenure as mayor, Schenck witnessed mass civil rights demonstrations by African-American students and others in Greensboro, culminating in his June 1963 decision to urge Greensboro businesses to voluntarily integrate their facilities. Schenck died in 1970 at age 43 of a cerebral hemorrhage. Materials include Schenck's correspondence, texts of statements given to the press, appointment books, memos, notes, clippings, and other items mostly related to his handling of the 1963 civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro that led to integration of the city's public accommodations. Correspondents include members of activist organizations such as the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and the Greensboro A&T Alumni Association; Greensboro businessmen; and a number of concerned citizens. Many letters and telegrams are specifically in response to Schenck's 7 June 1963 pro-integration statement that "selection of customers purely by race is outdated, morally unjust, and not in keeping with either democratic or Christian philosophy." Other items include reports, resolutions, meeting agendas and other material of the Greensboro City Council and the Commission on Human Relations; annotated lists of Greensboro businesses noting whether or not they agreed to integrate their facilities; and a recorded telephone conversation between Schenck and North Carolina Governor Terry Sanford dated 24 May 1963. The Addition of 2010 contains notes, transcripts, soundscriber audiodiscs, and other materials related to speeches given by David Schenck from June 1959 to June 1960. Also included are scattered letters, notes, reports, and statements related to civil rights protests and desegregation efforts, including materials related to the Commission on Human Relations and reports from the Office of the Mayor of Greensboro, N.C., among other items.
Creator Schenck, David, 1927-1970.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
Use of audio or visual materials may require production of listening or viewing copies.
Restrictions to Use
No usage restrictions.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the David Schenck Papers #5288, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from David Schenck Jr. in August 2006 (Acc. 100476) and in June 2010 (Acc. 101291).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

Greensboro Mayor David Schenck was born on 7 January 1927 in Greensboro, N.C., and was the great-grandson of Judge David Schenck, a prominent 19th century lawyer and politician in Greensboro. Schenck received a bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University in 1947 and attended the business school at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, N.C., in 1948. Schenck's father, Paul W. Schenck, founded an insurance business in Greensboro in 1912, which Schenck joined with his brother Paul W. Schenck Jr. in 1948. Upon his father's death in 1950, Schenck became owner-manager of Schenck and Company. Schenck continued in the insurance business into the 1960s and from 1960 to 1961 he served as vice president of the North Carolina Association of Insurance Agents.

In 1959, Schenck was elected to the Greensboro City Council where he served as chair of the Transportation Committee and later on the Mayor's Special Committee on Human Relations and Race Relations in 1960. On 8 May 1961, Schenck was elected mayor of Greensboro. He was reelected in 1963 and served until 1965. During his tenure as mayor, Schenck witnessed mass civil rights demonstrations by African-American students and others in Greensboro, culminating in his June 1963 decision to urge Greensboro businesses to voluntarily integrate their facilities. Schenck's actions during the events of 1963 were highly publicized and drew praise and criticism from pro-integrationists and segregationists alike.

Schenck and his wife Doris had a daughter, also Doris, and two sons, David Jr., and Kenneth. Schenck died in 1970 at age 43 of a cerebral hemorrhage.

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Papers of Greensboro, N.C., businessman, politician, and mayor David Schenck. Material includes Schenck's correspondence, texts of statements given to the press, appointment books, memoranda, notes, clippings, and other items mostly related to his handling of the 1963 civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro that led to integration of the city's public accommodations. Correspondents include members of activist organizations such as the Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), and the Greensboro A&T Alumni Association; Greensboro businessmen; and a number of concerned citizens. Many letters and telegrams are specifically in response to Schenck's 7 June 1963 pro-integration statement that "selection of customers purely by race is outdated, morally unjust, and not in keeping with either democratic or Christian philosophy." Other items include reports, resolutions, meeting agendas and other material of the Greensboro City Council and the Commission on Human Relations; annotated lists of Greensboro businesses noting whether or not they had agreed to integrate their facilities; and a recorded telephone conversation between Schenck and North Carolina Governor Terry Sanford dated 24 May 1963.

The Addition of 2010 contains notes, transcripts, soundscriber audiodiscs, and other materials related to speeches given by David Schenck from June 1959 to June 1960. Also included are scattered letters, notes, reports, and statements related to civil rights protests and desegregation efforts, including materials related to the Commission on Human Relations and reports from the Office of the Mayor of Greensboro, N.C., among other items.

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Contents list

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Papers, 1953-1965.

About 400 items.
Folder 1

Correspondence, 11 April 1963-16 September 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 1

Letters to and from Greensboro Mayor David Schenck mostly concerning the 1963 civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro and integration of the city's public accommodations. On 7 June 1963, Schenck issued a statement to the Greensboro business community that "selection of customers purely by race is outdated, morally unjust, and not in keeping with either democratic or Christian philosophy." Many letters are either recommendations for settling the demonstrations or responses to Schenck's 7 June statement. Correspondents include members of activist organizations such as the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), and the Greensboro A&T Alumni Association; Greensboro businessmen; and a number of local citizens. Also included is a copy of a 14 June 1963 letter from Schenck to President Kennedy thanking the president for quoting portions of Schenck's 7 June statement in an address to the United States Conference of Mayors in Hawaii.

Folder 2-3

Folder 2

Folder 3

Letters to Schenck in support of his pro-integration position, 29 May 1963-3 September 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 2-3

Most letters congratulate Schenck for his 7 June 1963 statement in support of integrating the city's public accommodations.

Folder 4

Letters criticizing Schenck for his pro-integration position, 16 April 1963-7 November 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 4

Folder 5

Correspondence between Schenck and Greensboro National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) President George C. Simkins, 13 March 1963-27 May 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 5

Correspondence chiefly concerns the denial of applications from African Americans wishing to serve on the Greensboro Police Reserve, wage discrepancies between African-American and white city truck drivers, and the denial of applications from African Americans seeking to join the Greensboro Tennis Association.

Folder 6

Telegrams received by Schenck, 24 May 1963-14 June 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 6

Telegrams include notes of support and criticism for Schenck's position on integration, suggestions for settling the demonstrations, and continued protests from pro-integration groups such as Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).

Folder 7

Statements by Mayor Schenck, 16 May 1963-26 June 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 7

Statements issued by Mayor Schenck concerning civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro and integration of the city's public accommodations.

Folder 8

Other statements, speeches, and resolutions issued by other individuals and organizations, 15 May 1963-20 February 1964 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 8

Statements concerning civil rights issues from WRAL-TV in Raleigh, the Southern Regional Council, and the Committee for Christian Social Action. Also, a transcript of a speech by Greensboro Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) Chair William A. Thomas titled "Wake Greensboro" recounting the history and progress made by civil rights activism in the city.

Folder 9

Greensboro City Council #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 9

Motions, reports and statements regarding civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro and integration of the city's public accommodations. Includes a report filed by the City Council in response to a resolution issued by Greensboro National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) President George C. Simkins calling for integration of public accommodations, equal employment opportunities for African Americans seeking city jobs, African-American representation on the City Boards of Commissions, and appointment of a permanent bi-racial commission in Greensboro.

Folder 10

Greensboro Commission on Human Relations, 21 December 1962-12 August 1964 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 10

Member rosters, correspondence, meeting agendas, motions, subcommittee reports, forms, and other material pertaining to the Greensboro Commission on Human Relations. Mayor Schenck appointed the Committee on Human Relations on 22 May 1963. On 1 July 1963 the City Council of Greensboro enacted an ordinance establishing a "Commission on Human Relations."

Folder 11

Durham Interim Committee, 4 June 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 11

The Durham Interim Committee was established on 22 May 1963 to address civil rights demonstration in Durham, North Carolina. A 19-page booklet contains material presented at the Committee's first report to the citizens of Durham on 4 June 1963.

Folder 12

Office Memos, 14 May 1963-17 June 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 12

Office memos to Schenck relaying phone messages and other information. Many memos appear to have been written by Schenck's assistant, Ruby.

Folder 13

Notes compiled by Schenck #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 13

Notes include handwritten drafts of statements, information recorded during telephone conversations, and annotated lists of motels, restaurants and other businesses in Greensboro noting whether or not they intend to integrate their facilities.

Folder 14

Printed material received by Schenck, 7 June 1963-24 January 1964 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 14

Newsletters, reports, booklets, and pamphlets mostly concerning civil rights issues. Material includes a poem entitled "The Black Spangled Banner," a 1964 report of the United States Conference of Mayors, a booklet titled "The Ugly Truth About the NAACP," and a pamphlet providing information on Congress of Racial Equality (CORE).

Folder 15

Clippings #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 15

Various clippings from newspapers in North Carolina and elsewhere reporting on civil rights issues in Greensboro and around the nation.

Folder 16

Appointment Books, 1961-1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 16

Three appointment books kept by Mayor Schenck highlighting his daily activities.

Folder 17

Miscellaneous material #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 17

Materials unrelated to civil rights issues including a 21-page script for a tour of Guilford County, North Carolina dated 28 July 1961, text of a 1963 speech by Schenck on a bond issue, and a memo from Guilford County historian James MacLamroc to the Greensboro Planning Commission.

Folder 18

Biographical data on David Schenck #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 18

A list of Schenck business, civic, and political activities and affiliations compiled in 1963.

Folder 19

Photocopies of clippings and correspondence among David Schenck Jr., William D. Snider, and William H. Chafe, 1980-1983 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." Folder 19

Material concerns the publication of William H. Chafe's history of the Greensboro civil rights movement entitled Civilities and Civil Rights: Greensboro, North Carolina, and the Black Struggle for Freedom (1980).

Data Compact Disc DCD-5288/1

Phone conversation between Schenck and North Carolina Governor Terry Sanford, 24 May 1963 #05288, Series: "Papers, 1953-1965." DCD-5288/1

Discussions between Schenck and Sanford regarding civil rights demonstrations in Greensboro.

Phone conversation.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)

About 100 items.

The Addition of 2010 contains notes, transcripts, soundscriber audiodiscs, and other materials related to speeches given by David Schenck from June 1959 to June 1960. Also included are scattered letters, notes, reports, and statements related to civil rights protests and desegregation efforts, including materials related to the Commission on Human Relations and reports from the Office of the Mayor of Greensboro, N.C., among other items.

Folder 20

Speech to North Carolina Junior Chamber (Jaycees), 4 June 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 20

Notes and transcript from a speech given by David Schenck at a meeting of the North Carolina Junior Chamber (Jaycees).

Audiodisc D-5288/1

Speech to North Carolina Junior Chamber (Jaycees), 4 June 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" D-5288/1

Soundscriber audiodisc recording.

Folder 21

Speech to firemen at memorial service, 14 June 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 21

Notes, transcript, and other materials related to a speech given by David Schenck at a memorial service for fallen firemen.

Audiodisc D-5288/3-4

D-5288/3

D-5288/4

Speeches to firemen at memorial services #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" D-5288/3-4

Soundscriber audiodisc recordings of speeches given by David Schenck, possibly on 14 June 1959 or 12 June 1960.

Folder 22

Speech to hardware dealers, 16 June 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 22

Notes and transcript from a speech given by David Schenck to a group of hardware dealers.

Audiodisc D-5288/2

Speech to hardware dealers, 16 June 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" D-5288/2

Soundscriber audiodisc recording a speech given by David Schenck to a group of hardware dealers.

Folder 23

Sermon at St. Francis Church, 20 August 1959 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 23

Notes, transcript, and other materials related to a sermon given by David Schenck at Saint Francis Church in Greensboro, N.C.

Folder 24

Speech to firemen at memorial service, 12 June 1960 #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 24

Notes, transcript, and other materials related to a speech given by David Schenck at a memorial service for fallen firemen.

Folder 25

Other Papers, 1962-1964 and undated #05288, Series: "Addition of June 2010 (Acc. 101291)" Folder 25

Scattered correspondence, notes, reports, and statements related to civil rights protests and desegregation efforts, including materials related to the Commission on Human Relations and reports from the Office of the Mayor of Greensboro, N.C., among other items.

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Processing Information

Processed by: Noah Huffman, September 2006

Encoded by: Noah Huffman, September 2006

Revisions: Finding aid updated by Anna Kephart, November 2010.

Additions received after 2006 have not been integrated into the original deposits. Researchers should always check additions to be sure they have identified all files of interest to them.

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