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Frank M. Wooten, Jr., Papers, 1902-1966

Manuscript Collection #126

Descriptive Summary Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Title: Frank M. Wooten, Jr., Papers
Creator: Wooten, Frank M. (Frank Marion), 1916-
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Abstract: Papers (1902-1966, undated) consisting of correspondence, pamphlets, proposed bills, reports, petitions, resolutions, bulletins, periodicals, printed bills, etc. Crime-punishment related topics, tax issues.
Extent: 3.473 Cubic feet, consisting of correspondence, pamphlets, proposed bills, reports, petitions, resolutions, bulletins, periodicals, printed bills, speeches, newspaper clippings, maps, photographs, minutes, rosters, brochures, and receipts.

Administrative Information Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Accessions Information

May 19, 1970, six cubic feet; Correspondence, reports, legislation, and miscellaneous material (1902-1961). Gift of Mr. Frank M. Wooten, Jr., Greenville, N.C.

April 16, 1993 (unprocessed addition 1), 1 volume; "Wooten family genealogy" By James Creech. Donor: Frank M. Wooten Estate.

June 20, 1993 (unprocessed addition 2), 7 cubic feet; Personal files dealing with state and local politics, N. C. General Assembly, East Carolina University, and litigation. Donor: Frank M. Wooten, JR. Estate.

February 26, 1996 (unprocessed addition 3), 1 cubic foot; Photographs, correspondence, and miscellany. Donor: Frank M. Wooten, Jr. Estate.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions

Copyright Notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Preferred Citation

Frank M. Wooten, Jr., Papers (#126), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Gift of Mr. Frank M. Wooten, Jr.

Processing Information

  • Processed by D. Lawson, June 1979

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services


Biographical / Historical Note Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Frank Marion Wooten, Jr. (b. May 3, 1916) was the son of Frank M. Wooten and Elizabeth Hampton (Wade) Wooten. He attended East Carolina College and the University of N.C. Law School, after which he joined his father's law practice in Greenville. Governor Luther Hodges appointed Wooten a member of the N.C. House of Representatives for the special session of 1956 after the resignation of Sam O. Worthington. Reelected in 1957, Wooten served through the session of 1961, after which he returned to the private practice of law.

Description Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Legislative correspondence for the special session of 1956 concerns primarily race-related topics. Letters provide constituent views on public school segregation and the collateral issue of state funding of private schools, the segregation controversy, and causes of racial conflict as well as the possible effect of desegregation on Negro educators. Letters pertain to the Pearsall and PTA plans of desegregation, and the Governor's Commission for the Public Schools. A letter (April 18, 1956) explains Wooten's opposition to a tobacco tax.

Legislative material includes proposed bills pertaining to desegregation, a report (undated) entitled "A Report to the N.C. Legislature by a group of Representative Negro Citizens...," an outline of eight proposed bills advocated by the Pearsall Education Committee (July 23, 1956), recommendations on school reorganization, and a resolution from the office of power by the Supreme Court (Aug., 1956).

Pamphlets of interest in the 1956 legislative series consist of editorials from the Richmond News Leader concerning interposition (1955-1956), and The Pearsall Plan to Save Our Schools (1956). An address before the civic clubs of Edgecombe County concerns anti-integration sentiments.

Legislative correspondence for the 1957 General Assembly concerns both major and minor issues. The bulk of the material consists of constituent letters advocating teachers' and state employees' salary increases. Many of these discuss bad teaching conditions resulting from inadequate salaries. The related issue of food or sales taxes to raise revenue also receives much attention. Numerous letters concern the effort to establish the East Carolina School of Nursing. Related letters concern efforts to increase appropriations for the Pitt County Mental Health Center. ECU-related letters pertain to the salary of President John Messick, the appropriation needs of ECU, the difficulties encountered by the school because of lack of funds, and an accusation by Messick that the University system maintained a double standard with ECU. A letter (January, 1957) from Dean Henry Brandis outlines critical needs of the UNC Law School.

Several letters pertain to the imbroglio involving the development of the Morehead City port instead of the Wilmington port. Other topics of interest include a proposed automobile financial responsibility act, a proposed alteration in the Greenville City Charter affecting mayoral elections, the non-par banking controversy, and Charlotte, N.C., corporate limit extension.

A letter (May 13, 1957) pertains to five proposed United States Constitutional amendments. Letters pertaining to N.C. courts comment on opposition to a justice of the peace selection in Greenville, N.C. (Nov. 1956), an alteration of court terms (Mar., 1957), and an increase in salaries of justices of the peace (Mar., 1957). A letter from Governor Hodges comments on the need of court reform in North Carolina (May, 1957).

Crime- and punishment-related topics include control of prearranged racing (Mar. 7, 1957), shoplifting (Mar. 23, 1957), pornography (April 2; May 27, encl to May 21), and boats speeding on the Tar River (May, 1957).

Form letters from the N.C. Democratic Executive Committee pertain to the national election of 1958. Letters pertain to the General Assembly speakership attempts of several aspirants.

Tax-related issues include a schedule of beer and wine excise taxes allocations (Nov., 1956), a surtax on beer (June 4, 1957), the negative effect of a tax on tobacco (Oct., 1956), and a gasoline tax (Mar. 18, 1957).

Issues related to social problems include a letter advocating an alcoholic rehabilitation center with ancillary comments on the rehabilitation of alcoholics (Mar. 12, 1957). Letters pertaining to tourism complain of the pollution of the Tuckasegee River and its effect on tourism and local health conditions (Mar., 1957). Another constituent opposes the expenditure of federal funds to sponsor businesses potentially competitive with established businesses (April, 1957). Numbers of letters pertain to the implementation of daylight savings time (March, May 1957).

Other issues include Greenville Tobacco Company's advocation of the development of a port at Morehead City (Mar. 4, 1957), and opposition to a proposed requirement that tobacco manufacturers label packages (April 5, 1957).

Legislative material includes proposed drafts of bills as well as various printed bills. Files pertain to general revenue and appropriations, and to appropriations for ECU. Other legislative material includes reports, petitions, resolutions, lobby material, bulletins, periodicals, and municipal records concerning Fountain, Greenville, and Bethel. Of particular interest are a resolution (Oct. 18, 1956) on the "Evils of [Negro] Bastardy" by the Pitt County Patriots of North Carolina and pamphlets pertaining to the United Federation of Teachers education program (March, 1956), right to work laws (Jan., 1957) and the "Campaign for 48 States," a U.S. Constitutional Amendment movement.

Legislative Session, 1959, correspondence relates to non-par banking, a legislative program for public education, increase in teachers' salaries, appropriations for the various state agencies, automobile financial responsibility, ECU budget and Nursing School, and a crown tax on soft drinks. Particular letters of interest (Feb., 13, 1959) discuss and suggest solutions for the problem of bastardy; comment on collective bargaining being made illegal by public employees (Mar. 5, 1959), and discuss the activities of the Municipal Government Study Commission (Mar. 24, 1959).

Other records of interest for the 1959 session include files on the Municipal Government Study Commission, petitions and resolutions, budget and appropriations material, printed bills, governor's messages, lobby material, publications, and newspaper clippings. Miscellaneous material for the 1959 session includes "Thimblerigger Courts," an attack by Judge Frank Wooten on the Bell Committee court system propositions (undated).

Correspondence for the 1961 General Assembly consists of similar legislative issues. Wooten chaired the Judiciary #1 Committee; and issues such as court reform, legislative reapportionment, and a state constitutional amendment to enlarge the Senate comprise important topics of discussion. Other legislative issues include compulsory automobile insurance, consumer finance, and regulation of "shell" homes. In a letter (Feb. 20, 1961) a Florida state legislator opposes the twenty-third amendment to give representation to the District of Columbia because of the Negro population majority in the area. Letters (Jan., April, 1961) outline the appropriation needs of Pembroke State University. A letter (April, 1961) discusses a plan to divert the "floundering" South from socialism. A similar letter (undated encl. to May 19, 1961) comments on the John Birch Society, socialism, and communism. Other letters (June, 1961) pertain to the issue of capital punishment.

Independent correspondence files pertain to proposed legislation regulating certified public accountants, and budget-appropriation needs of ECU. Other 1961 session files include committee material, budget and appropriations material, and legislative committeereports. Drainage district files pertain to the Ahoskie Creek Watershed and a Pitt County right-of-way contract. The records include a summary of the small watershed program in N.C., as well as copies of drainage legislation. Files also pertain to automobile insurance legislation, reapportionment, certified public accountant bills, consumer finance, and North Carolina court reform. Clippings relate to reapportionment and other bills introduced by Wooten.

Correspondence files (1948-1957) reflect Wooten's membership and involvement in the Young Democratic Clubs of North Carolina. Letters concern the campaigns and administrations of William W. Staton (1951), Bedford W. Black (1952), Horace R. Kornegay (1953), John R. Jordan (1954), and Henry Hall Wilson (1954). Letters (May, 1953) from Jesse Helms, then administrative assistant to Senator Willis Smith, concern a political squabble between Smith and YDC President William Harrison. An interesting letter (May 15, 1953) classifies and evaluates prominent YDC members for political positions. Related material consists of minutes, reports, resolutions, financial papers, rosters, pamphlets, clippings, and miscellaneous.

Pitt County records include a flyer concerning N.C. municipal bonds (1934), a contract for auditing the accounts of Pitt County Schools (1934), a statement of uncollected taxes (1935), a legal brief (1935), valuations of Pitt County property (1937) and related material: a tax levy comparison, an argument favoring state reimbursement of counties having donated funds for the state highway system, and an outline of the cost of maintaining the county auditor's office. Later material includes a summary of estimated cash requirements and available cash in Pitt County (1951), as well as a list for election of registrars and judges for Pitt County (1954).

Wooten served for a brief time with the Office of Price Administration board for Pitt County. Correspondence (1946) consists of a letter containing procedural instructions and Wooten's letter of resignation. A flyer, "OPA3-B," delineates the fixed price of beer (1944).

Correspondence and related records pertain to the unsuccessful attempt of Alton A. Lennon to defeat Kerr Scott in the 1954 Senate primary. Material consists of letters of appreciation from Lennon, lists of campaign workers to receive congratulations, photocopies of State Highway Commission checks to Scott, as well as campaign receipts and bulletins. Other campaign materials include state Senate campaign records for 1946, 1948, and 1950.

Personal correspondence includes a complaint against the routing practices of the Seashore Transportation Company (June 10, 1942) and a discussion of National Youth Administration appropriations by Senator Josiah Bailey (June, 1943). Several letters pertain to Wooten's notification of parents that their sons had been captured by Germans, which he learned from shortwave radio transmissions (1943). Other letters pertain to the General Assembly speakership campaign of Carl Venters (1959). A letter from Chancellor J. D.Messick concerns ECU and the future nursing school (July, 1958). Another letter discusses the problems and responsibilities of a legal secretary (Mar., 1961).

Included in the Wooten papers is a folder of Frank M. Wooten, Sr., correspondence (1917, 1923-1941, undated). Most of the letters concern Wooten family genealogy. Letters (Mar., 1931) discuss the reorganization of the National Bank of Greenville. A Pitt County commissioner accuses the Greenville Daily Reflector of libel (Oct., 1931), and a letter and enclosures (Sept., 1931) concern the organization of farmers for security in the Depression. Of interest is a postcard containing a photograph of two Pitt County residents, Fred Venters, Jr., and Sr., aged 76 and 106, respectively.

Legal papers include a waiver [1929] of notice of the first meeting of the directors of the Planters' Agricultural Credit Corp., the will of F. M. Wooten, Sr. (1931), as well as a delineation of volumes in his library (undated).

Wooten genealogical typescripts include "Ensign Shadrach Wooten and the Wooten Family" (1933), and a history of the Loftin family (undated).

Newspaper clippings follow the political career of Wooten; they include various election returns, a 1932 Pitt County election, and the 1937 Pitt County budget.

Of interest in Wooten miscellaneous is a radio speech, "Strengthen Democracy for Defense," (1941), by F. M. Wooten.

Subject Headings Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Container List Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Box 1#0126.1
Special Legislative Session, 1956,correspondence, legislative material, pamphlets, miscellaneous; Legislative Session, 1957,correspondence (1956-Mar., 1957).
Box 2#0126.2
Legislative Session, 1957,correspondence (April-Dec., 1957).
Box 3#0126.3
Legislative Session, 1957,proposed bills, budget and appropriations, ECU appropriation, reports, petitions, resolutions, lobby material, municipal records.
Box 4#0126.4
Legislative Session, 1957,bulletins, pamphlets, periodicals, miscellaneous; Legislative Session, 1959,correspondence (1956-May, 1959)
Box 5#0126.5
Legislative Session, 1959,correspondence (June, undated, 1959),municipal government study commission, petitions, resolutions, budget material, appropriations.
Box 6#0126.6
Legislative Session, 1959,appropriations (cont.d), proposed bills, printed bills, governor's messages, lobby material, pamphlets, Veterans' Commission report, publications.
Box 7#0126.7
Legislative Session, 1959,newspaper clippings, miscellaneous; Legislative Session, 1961,correspondence (1960-May 1-17, 1961).
Box 8#0126.8
Legislative Session, 1961,correspondence (May 18-30 - June, 1961),correspondence (capital punishment, CPA's, ECU), ECU budget material, invitations, finance committee material, budget and appropriations, bills signed, legislative committee reports.
Box 9#0126.9
Legislative Session, 1961,drainage district, automobile insurance legislation, reapportionment, CPA legislation, consumer finance legislation, court reform legislation, miscellaneous bills.
Box 10#0126.10
Legislative Session, 1961,addresses, resolutions, N.C. highways, N.C. libraries, bulletins, pamphlets, newspaper clippings, photographs, miscellaneous; Young Democratic Club correspondence (1951-1954).
Box 11#0126.11
Young Democratic Club correspondence (1955-1957, n.d),minutes, reports, rosters, pamphlets, clippings, miscellaneous; Pitt County records; Office of Price Administration, Lennon campaign, and Wooten campaign.

Preliminary Inventory Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Below is material taken from a preliminary inventory and represents content from the collection that is unprocessed.

  • Box 35#0126.35
    • Folder a#0126.35.a
      East Carolina's Spade: "To Serve" An Almost Realistic Pageant of the History of the First Fifty Years of East Carolina College, by Emma L. Hooper [ca 1958] Mimeograph typescript. 1 item. 30 p.
    • Folder b#0126.35.b
      East Carolina Teachers College [ECTC] Files (1934-1938, 1941, 1955) 39 items. 66 p.
    • Folder c#0126.35.c
      Greenville High School files (1933-1936) 19 items. 38 p.
    • Folder d#0126.35.d
      Greenville High School notes & clippings, etc. (1928-1935) 23 items. ca 55 p.
    • Folder e#0126.35.e
      University of North Carolina Chapel Hill Law School printed materials (1935-1944) 15 items. 169 p.
    • Folder f#0126.35.f
      University of North Carolina Chapel Hill & UNC Law School files & correspondence (1935-1941) 33 items. 45 p.
    • Folder g#0126.35.g
      Wooten, Frank M., Sr. Memorabilia (1905-1937) 14 items. 237 p. Note: Includes Christmas card from Josephus Daniels [ca 1934-1935] & Book of Common Prayer, etc.] 14 items. 237 p.
  • Box 37#0126.37
    • Folder a#0126.37.a
      Wooten, Bessie W. Correspondence with her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. (1950s-1970s) ca 35 items. ca 85 p.
    • Folder b#0126.37.b
      Wooten, Bessie W. Correspondence with her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. (1942-1950s) ca 55 items. ca 115 p.
    • Folder c#0126.37.c
      Wooten, Bessie W. Correspondence with her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. (ca 1970s) ca 15 items ca 15 p.
    • Folder d#0126.37.d
      Wooten, Bessie W. Correspondence with her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. from Cuba (1943) 6 items 11 p.
    • Folder e#0126.37.e
      Wooten, Bessie W. Letters to her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. (1932-1938) 10 items 20 p.
    • Folder f#0126.37.f
      Wooten, Bessie W. Letters to her son Frank M. Wooten, Jr. Mostly to Chapel Hill, NC (1938-1941) 24 items ca 55 p.
    • Folder g#0126.37.g
      Wooten, Bessie W. Correspondence with Mrs. Hoffman & Gabriella (1947-1948) 4 items. 4 p.
    • Folder h#0126.37.h
      Wooten, Frank M., Jr. Correspondence with his mother Bessie Wade Wooten, from Chapel Hill, NC (1938-1961) ca 150 items ca 250 p.
    • Folder i#0126.37.i
      Wooten, Frank M., Sr. Letters to his son, Frank M. Wooten, Jr., in Chapel Hill, NC (1936-1941) 21 items. 45 p.
  • Box 39#0126.39
    • Folder a#0126.39.a
      Archer. Correspondence (1,3 Sept. 1943) 3 items. 4 p.
    • Folder b#0126.39.b
      Evertine & Marianne. Correspondence (19.29 August 1943) 1 item. 4 p.
    • Folder c#0126.39.c
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Miscellaneous items (1944, 1990, n.d.) 9 items. 10 p.
    • Folder d#0126.39.d
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Correspondence (June - Sept. 1943) ca 75 items ca 150 p.
    • Folder e#0126.39.e
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Correspondence (July - Dec. 1943) ca 50 items ca 100 p.
    • Folder f#0126.39.f
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Correspondence (Jan. - March 1944) ca 40 items ca 80 p.
    • Folder g#0126.39.g
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Correspondence (April - June 1944) ca 40 items ca 80 p.
    • Folder h#0126.39.h
      Griesemer, Alice Templin. Correspondence (July - Dec. 1944) ca 35 items ca 75 p. Note: Frank M. Wooten, Jr. asked Alice Templin Griesemer, a public health student at UNC Chapel Hill, to marry him; she refused and married Dr. Charles Laval Williams, Jr., Senior Assitant Surgeon, US Public Health Service on 14 October 1944; she died in Nov. 1946.
    • Folder i#0126.39.i
      Griesemer, Edith H. Correspondence (3/9/1944) 1 item. 2 p.
    • Folder j#0126.39.j
      Marindale, Ella Catherine Griesemer [Alice's sister] Correspondence (1944, 1946) 3 items. 8 p.
    • Folder k#0126.39.k
      Pattie, Peggie & Maude. Correspondence (1944, n.d.) 4 items. 5 p.
    • Folder l#0126.39.l
      Virginia. Correspondence with Alice Templin Griesemer (ca 1943-1944) 3 items. 3 p.
    • Folder m#0126.39.m
      Wooten. Frank M., Jr. Letters & Drafts of letters to the Griesemer family (ca 1944) 5 items ca 25 p.
    • Folder n#0126.39.n
      Wooten, Frank M., Sr. (Mrs.) Postcards to Frank M. Wooten, Jr. (son) (Augf. 1943) 5 items. 5 p.
Box 42#0126.42
Frank M. Wooten, Jr.Grade School & High School Memorabilia & Ephemera (1928-1944) 11 items. 75 p. Note: Includes wooden stake, wooden wedge, ping pong ball, 2 wallets, American Legion poppy, autograph book, collection of stamps, etc.
  • Box 43#0126.43 Icon to indicate that there are digitized materials available
    Frank M. Wooten, Jr.Grade School & High School Printed Materials (ca 1900-1926) 11 items. 75 p. Note: Includes First Reader (1923), Graded Literature Readers Third Book (c 1900), The Child's World Primer (c 1917), Columbia Research Bureau, American History Test (c 1926), Terry and the Pirates on their Travels, Little Snow White, Typists' Guide (c 1912), Uncle Wiggily's Auto Sled by Howard R. Garis (c 1922), and Rook: A Famous Group of Original Copyrighted Games Box [with printed cards]. 9 items. ca. 300 p.
Box 44#0126.44
Frank M. Wooten, Jr.Grade School & High School Composition & Note books (ca 1928-1936) 16 vols. ca 560 p.
Box 45#0126.45
Frank M. Wooten, Jr. East Carolina Teachers College [ECTC] Looseleaf Note books & note cards (ca 1937-1938) 3 items ca 125 p.
Box 46#0126.46
Frank M. Wooten, Jr. Political Brochures, Pamphlets, Broadsides, Etc. (ca 1939-1990, n.d.) 36 items ca 325 p.
Box 47#0126.47
Frank M. Wooten, Jr. Political Memorabilia & Ephemera (ca 1940-1971, n.d.) Note: Includes political buttons, campaign cards, membership cards, pens and pencils, Winston cigarette lighter, paper napkin, name tags, thimbles, wooden coins, nail file, etc. 55 items ca 55 p.
Oversize Folder os1#0126.os1
Oversized Newspapers & Newspaper Clippings: Greenville High School & East Carolina Teachers College (ca 1935-1941, n.d.) 4 items.
Oversize Folder os2#0126.os2
Oversized Newspapers & Newspaper Clippings: North Carolina Legislature (1946-1962, n.d.) 75 items.
Oversize Folder os3#0126.os3
Oversized Newspapers & Newspaper Clippings: Greenville Mayor (1970-1973, n.d.) 55 items.

Online access to this finding aid is supported with funds created through the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). These funds come through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which is administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This grant is part of the North Carolina ECHO, Exploring Cultural Heritage Online, Digitization Grant Program.

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