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Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988

Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988

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Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988 UALR.MS.0191

UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture
401 President Clinton Avenue
Little Rock, AR, 72201

Profile Description

Creation: This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-04-24T16:00-0500

Repository: UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture
creatorLedbetter, Calvin R. , 1929-
Title: Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988
Dates: 1964-1988
Quantity: 13.0 Linear feet22.5 document boxes, 2 flat boxes
Identification: UALR.MS.0191

Arrangement note

Chronologically, with the exception of legislation materials in Series II, Boxes 2-3, which are arranged alphabetically according to title or subject.

Scope and Contents note

This collection chiefly concerns Ledbetter's political career, with the bulk of materials documenting state legislative sessions of 1967-1977.

Series I contains campaign materials, including news clippings, correspondence, financial materials, and memorabilia.

Series II covers state legislation from 1967 to 1977, including correspondence, news clippings, drafts, and notes regarding bills that Ledbetter authored or supported during his five terms in the Arkansas House of Representatives. Series II also contains materials from the joint Committee on Legislative Organization (COLO), which Ledbetter chaired. The COLO employed the Eagleton Institute of Politics at Rutgers University to conduct a study regarding the reformation of the Arkansas General Assembly. Series II additionally features materials from the Arkansas Constitutional Conventions of 1970 and 1980, as well as the failed attempt for a constitutional convention in 1975. Series II concludes with the legislative digests from Ledbetter's five terms.

Series III contains materials on the merger of Little Rock University (now the University of Arkansas at Little Rock) with the University of Arkansas system, ca. 1960s, as well as the movement for UALR's independence from the system, 1981-1982. This box also includes discussion of a loyalty oath for university professors, 1974-1975, and materials from a lawsuit against state employees in the legislature (college professors), 1969-1976.

Series IV includes national conferences in which Ledbetter participated in the 1980s. The National Legislative Conference, the National Conference of State Legislative Leaders, and the National Society of State Legislators (NSSL) merged in 1975 to form the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL). Ledbetter was Chairman of the NSSL/NCSL Criminal Justice and Consumer Affairs Task Force. He served on the Executive Committee that formed the NCSL, as well as Intergovernmental Relations Committee and the National Advisory Committee on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals. Series IV also includes materials from Walter Mondale's presidential campaign, 1983-1984. Ledbetter served as the campaign coordinator for Pulaski County.

Series V contains miscellaneous news clippings regarding Ledbetter and his political career.

Series VI contains audio-visual materials: 100+ photographic prints, contact sheets, and negatives of Ledbetter, his family, and his associates; audio recording [compact disc] of an interview conducted by a member of UALR CAHC staff in 2013 regarding Ledbetter's life and career.

See also: Brownie Ledbetter Papers, MSS.99.36, Butler Center for Arkansas Studies, Arkansas Studies Institute, Little Rock.

Biographical/Historical note

Calvin Reville "Cal" Ledbetter, Jr., was born 1929 April 29 in Little Rock, Arkansas, to Virginia and Cal Ledbetter, Sr. (II). Cal Ledbetter, Sr., served as president of the Boyle Realty Company, having inherited shares from his mother, Snow Ledbetter Boyle, and stepfather, John F. Boyle, Jr., who founded the prestigious firm. Cal Ledbetter, Jr., received his undergraduate degree from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University and his Juris Doctorate from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville. From 1955 to 1957, he was stationed in Germany as a member of the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General Corps. He later earned his Ph.D. in Political Science from Northwestern University in 1961. In 1953, Ledbetter married Mary Brown "Brownie" Williams (1932-2010), who became a political activist in her own right as a member of the Women's Emergency Committee in 1958 and a founder of the Panel of American Women in Arkansas (later the Arkansas Public Policy Panel) in 1963. Cal and Brownie had three children, Grainger, Jeffrey (deceased), and Snow.

In 1960, Ledbetter joined the faculty at Little Rock University (now the University of Arkansas at Little Rock), and has served as Chair of the Department of Political Science as well as Dean of the College of Liberal Arts (now Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences). He retired from teaching in 1997 and became Professor Emeritus of Political Science.

In addition to his academic career, Ledbetter served five terms in the Arkansas House of Representatives from 1967 to 1977. A strong advocate of legislative reform, Ledbetter chaired the Committee on Legislative Organization and championed the Eagleton Institute's study of the Arkansas legislature. He was also elected as a delegate to the state Constitutional Convention of 1968-1970, and again as one of four vice presidents of the Constitutional Convention of 1978-1980. Ledbetter additionally chaired the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) Law Enforcement and Criminal Justice Task Force after serving on its first executive committee, and was later appointed to the National Advisory Committee on Criminal Justice Standards and Goals. Ledbetter was also a delegate to two Democratic National Conventions, 1968 and 1984.

Arkansas. Constitutional Convention (1969-1970)
Arkansas. Constitutional Convention (1979-1980)
Arkansas--Politics and government--20th century
Ledbetter, Brownie Williams, 1932-2010


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is available for viewing at the Arkansas Studies Institute.

Conditions Governing Use note

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17-U.S. Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. The person using this material is liable for any infringement.

Copyright for correspondence in the collections belongs to those correspondents or their beneficiaries. Persons wanting to re-use those materials are advised to obtain permission from copyright holders.

Administrative Information

Citation Notes

Bibliographic citation:

Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988, UALR.MS.0191. UALR Center for Arkansas History and Culture, Arkansas Studies Institute, Little Rock.

Footnote or Endnote info:

Description of item, file or item number, box number, series number, Calvin R. Ledbetter, Jr., Papers, 1964-1988, UALR.MS.0191.

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