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Title: Oral History Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, December 13, 1990. Interview L-0064-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Electronic Edition.
Author: Pollitt, Daniel H., interviewee
Interview conducted by McColl, Ann
Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this interview.
Text encoded by Jennifer Joyner
Sound recordings digitized by Aaron Smithers Southern Folklife Collection
First edition, 2008
Size of electronic edition: 100 Kb
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2008.
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text.
The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2008-00-00, Celine Noel, Wanda Gunther, and Kristin Martin revised TEIHeader and created catalog record for the electronic edition.
2008-02-19, Jennifer Joyner finished TEI-conformant encoding and final proofing.
Source(s):
Title of recording: Oral History Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, December 13, 1990. Interview L-0064-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series L. University of North Carolina. Southern Oral History Program Collection (L-0064-3)
Author: Ann McColl
Title of transcript: Oral History Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, December 13, 1990. Interview L-0064-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series L. University of North Carolina. Southern Oral History Program Collection (L-0064-3)
Author: Daniel H. Pollitt
Description: 141 Mb
Description: 31 p.
Note: Interview conducted on December 13, 1990, by Ann McColl; recorded in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
Note: Transcribed by Unknown.
Note: Forms part of: Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Series L. University of North Carolina, Manuscripts Department, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Note: Original transcript on deposit at the Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, December 13, 1990.
Interview L-0064-3. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Pollitt, Daniel H., interviewee


Interview Participants

    DANIEL H. POLLITT, interviewee
    ANN McCOLL, interviewer

[TAPE 1, SIDE A]


Page 1
[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]
ANN McCOLL:
This is the third in a series of interviews with Dan Pollitt. Today's date is December 13. The interview is being conducted by Ann McColl and the interviews are being held in Dan Pollitt's office.
Okay, last time we were talking you went through the faculty that was at the law school when you came in 1957. I was wondering if you could tell me some more about the faculty and students since you've been here.
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Okay. You know, we went through to jog the memory; we went through the Law Reviews year by year to find out who came and who left. The thing that strikes me is that there were a lot of people who came and went and they were all white male. There was a single woman. Mary Oliver was our librarian and she taught legal method and got paid less than anybody else that entire period. She was the only woman and we had no blacks.
ANN McCOLL:
This is through the sixties?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. This goes up through 1970. And I'm trying to find a pattern and I'm not sure I can, but let me describe all of them. The first one to come…. I came in '57 and George Hardy came that year. George was a very exuberant young man who had been a Rhodes scholar and the Editor in Chief of the Louisiana Law Review and his father had been a very significant political figure in Louisiana. He had fought Huey Long. He was the other faction. George was made for the larger world and left after two years or three years and went back to Louisiana and joined the Longs. Earl Long or whatever. Then he became a

Page 2
specialist in oil and gas law and served for awhile as the Dean of the University of Houston Law School, but he moved in the large political circles. And we knew he would. I mean, that was sort of a selling point when we hired him. The other person who came on a year later after me was Robin Hinson who had just graduated from law school as Editor in Chief and joined the faculty immediately.
ANN McCOLL:
Was this unusual?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
This was unusual, but he had the highest academic record ever achieved by anyone since Albert Coates or something like that. He had been between Davidson College and law school, he'd been a Navy officer for four years or five years. He was married and had two little children. So he had maturity. But he wanted to experience the practice of law, so he left after about two years and went to practice law and went on to become the General Counsel for NCNB and then the power company, N.C. Power and Light and something else. He was what they called the "rainmaker" or the business getter in one of the major Charlotte firms. He was offered the deanship of Wake Forest after awhile and considered it strongly. But that was Robin. Then Dick Phillips was next. Dick had been in the famous class, so to speak, with Bill Aycock who became the Chancellor and Bill Friday who became the President and Billy Dees who became the Chairman of the Board of Trustees and Bill Johnson who was the Chairman of the Governors of the University and Dick and a few others. They were the post-war crowd. They'd all had four or five years of military service and came to law school. They were all married

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and lived in Odum Village; what is now Odum Village and they were a close knit group. Dick's wife died in an automobile crash and he was practicing law in Laurinburg and in Fayetteville with Terry Sanford who was his law partner. So I think he came up here to teach one semester and it was sort of to get away from things. But he liked it very much and we liked him very much, so we offered him a permanent job. In the following year, he joined the faculty. He and I were the youngsters at age thirty-five or something like that. He joined us in 1959 and he became the dean after Henry Brandis served three consecutive terms. Then Dick was tapped for the Fourth Circuit and he was the Chief Judge of the Fourth Circuit until not too long ago. Seymour Wurfel was next. Seymour was the colonel. Seymour was a colonel in the Army jag and he'd had thirty years of military service. He had part of that at the jag school in Charlottesville, Virginia. Bill Aycock had been at Charlottesville and was writing a book on military law. Colonel Wurfel was his co-partner on that, so Bill Aycock knew Colonel Wurfel and thought at that time military law was significant. So Bill Aycock recommended him. During his time in the Army, he had been at several campuses as ROTC instructor or something, so he had taught on several different campuses, so we weren't just hiring somebody out of the Army. It was somebody out of the Army who had written a book and had taught classes. But he was a mature person when he came on. So was Dick phillips because Dick had been practicing for eight or nine years after he left here and was a very successful trial lawyer and a politician. The following year his law partner was

Page 4
elected governor and he was campaign manager for his law partner. Dick had been head of the Young Democrats in the state and was politically saavied and knew that his family had been influential in Scotland County for some generations. And then after Seymour Wurfel…. We had Robinson Everett visit repeatedly. Robinson Everett was my contemporary and Dick Phillips' contemporary and had done his undergraduate work here and then had gone off to the Army for three or four years. Then he went to the Harvard Law School and clerked for a judge on the Court of Military Appeals which was created after World War II to get civilian input into "military justice". Then he came back to Durham and practiced with his mother and father. His mother was our oldest living alumni for many, many years. I think she graduated from this law school in 1921. He practiced law and he taught part time at Duke and he taught part time here. He was also very active in the Democratic Party in Durham and he organized the NBC radio affiliate and controlled that. He was a significant partner in that venture. He was chairman of the Durham Housing Commission. He was into everything. Now he's the Chief Judge of the Court of Military Appeals where he's been for fifteen years or so. So we had Dick Phillips out of practice and Colonel Wurfel out of the military and Robinson Everett and me. And I'd clerked for a judge and had five or six years of practice.
ANN McCOLL:
And you were also very active once you got here like these other people as far as having outside…

Page 5
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes, well we were all…. Dick was running his partner's gubernatorial campaign and Robinson Everett was doing the Durham housing and I was doing civil liberties and integration and civil rights work.
ANN McCOLL:
Is that something the law school wanted out of its faculty?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
When we were interviewed, "What are your interests?" And I think we were all editors of the Law Review, but that would not be a critical thing. The people at the time, like the Van Heckes and the Wettachs, they were all active. And Albert Coates, Mr. McCall in the orchestra and the fundraiser. Herb Baer was the chairman of the Friends of the Library committee. Van Hecke was on the War Labor Board. Wettach was the chairman of the N.C. Press and had been the mayor of the community.
ANN McCOLL:
Was this almost like a part time job to be a professor with all these other…
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
No, but everybody worked hard. I don't know whether it's a part time job or not. But in any event, the old Brilliant Eight or Magic Nine or whatever the term, started to get old. Fred McCall who taught real property had started to have eye problems so we thought we ought to augment the faculty in the real property field. Nothing was sectionalized then. I mean, if you took security transactions, you had Hanft and if you took labor law you had me and if you took equity or something you had Van Hecke. Dick Phillips taught procedure. So we thought we ought to sectionalize the law school. The enrollment was growing somewhat and it ought to be in real properties to ease Mr.

Page 6
McCall's eye problem. So we got Tom Christopher who did teach real property and also taught anti-trust. I was teaching anti-trust at the time because Bill Aycock had taught it and I replaced Bill Aycock. When I came, I took all of Bill Aycock's courses. Tom Christopher came and he had been very active in the food and drug field and he'd been chairman of the American Bar Association Committee on food and drug law. He was from Alabama and had been a Navy pilot and was teaching at NYU where he had started an institute of some sort on food and drug law. But he wanted to return South and he came. At that time, the University television station was educational in the sense that it had a lot of teachers teaching things on it, so Tom Christopher immediately started a Monday evening program on the law and I was his partner on that one. We would have a guests, but whatever the Supreme Court did or whatever the new development was or law in morality or whatever, there was a half hour…
ANN McCOLL:
For general audience?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. Over channel four, statewide. But he was active and we knew he would be active. He continued his food and drug activities. But at about that time Henry Brandis who had served three five year terms as dean decided to retire as dean. It was really a question of whether it would go to Dick Phillips who was the North Carolinian or to Tom Christopher. Tom Christopher had a national repute which far exceeded that of Dick Phillips, but Dick was well known in North Carolina and knew everybody in the legislature and knew the governor real, real well.
ANN McCOLL:
Terry Sanford?

Page 7
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. So I think it was a very close vote, but it went to Dick Phillips. I don't know whether that was a cause or not, but within a year or two Tom Christopher left to become the dean at the University of New Mexico. Then he left that after four or five years to become the dean of the University of Alabama which was his alma mater and he stayed on as the dean at the University of Alabama for about fifteen or twenty years. So that was Tom Christopher. He did good things down there. He was for integration and that's when George Wallace was the governor, so he had to move cautiously, but he had a lot of good symposiums at the law school and would invite people in to speak and there would always be academic freedom, but he was pushing things the best way that a dean could. Then we hired in 1961 three more people. The enrollment is increasing over the years. There was Dan Dobbs from Arkansas whom I had taught at Arkansas and he had been the editor of the Law Review at Arkansas and I had been the faculty advisor to the Law Review. Then he had gone and he had worked a summer or two with Senator Fullbright. Senator Fullbright was the chairman of the Foreign Relations committee and Dan's father was a lawyer. I don't know whether he'd been the head of the atheist's society or not, but he had been very active in it. In Arkansas at the time, they had something called "Religious Emphasis Week" where classes would stop for a week and various ministers would come in and there would be public forums and discussions. The two years I was at Arkansas Dan Dobbs wrote the letter to the school newspaper protesting bringing in all these religion people. He was an original thinker and didn't

Page 8
mind going against the grain. Then he'd practiced for four or five years after he'd clerked for a Federal judge. Then he went to Illinois and got his LLM and came here where he became, to my surprise, a scholar. He gave up pretty much all outside activities except legal scholarship. He wrote…. He took over Prosser's tort book and he also wrote the leading book on remedies while he was here. He would get offers all the time to go visit for a year somewhere or to join the other faculties. After ten years or so he took one and he went to the University of Arizona at Phoenix. He's a warm weather person. He's an umpty-ump chair of some kind up there.
ANN McCOLL:
So he went to Arizona?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
He went to Arizona. At the same time we got Dick Day, Richard Day. Richard was a Michigan graduate, an honor graduate, who had practiced law in an anti-trust firm and a food and drug firm, the biggest one in Washington, D.C. and he'd done that for about five years. His interests were sailing. He liked to sail and he was a sailor of some repute, but we didn't hire him for that reason. He stayed here. He quickly became the recorder or secretary for the American Bar ABA section on anti-trust. He wrote up the annual report which would always be about a hundred and fifty pages of what's doing this year in the field of anti-trust. He was an excellent teacher and an excellent scholar and a very congenial person, but we didn't have any secretarial help all that time. We had Gladys who was the dean's secretary and that's all there was in the way of secretarial help. I forget. Ruth Strong was our general manager and she came in after another

Page 9
lady who had been here thirty-five years or so. When I came here to replace Bill Aycock who became the Chancellor, I saw him. He used to hold court every day at 9:30 at Lenoir Hall which was the cafeteria. I said, "Bill, I don't have any pencils or any stationery." He says, "It's in the bottom drawer. There are some pencils I left for you." There were about six half pencils in a little thing. So I went over to see Miss whatever her name was which was across the hall and said, "Could I have some stationery please?" And she said, "How many letters are you going to write?" And I said, "Well, ten maybe." So she counted out ten pieces of paper for me. We had to buy all our own supplies.
ANN McCOLL:
As an individual?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. We didn't have typewriters or anything.
ANN McCOLL:
So you did everything hand written?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Well, I bought a typewriter, a second hand typewriter. But that's the way it was. And poor Dick Day was putting out this…. He typed and he spent all summer writing this thing himself. Then he got an offer from Ohio State to go out there and join their faculty and they told him they'd give him a secretary. So he told Dick Phillips, "You know, I'd like to stay here, but they are offering a secretary. Can you match it?" And Dick said, "No." So we lost him. He continued to be real big in anti-trust but we couldn't keep him for lack of a secretary. But what happened was…. I guess Henry was the dean when he left because the dean out there who was Frank Strong, called and said that they were going to hire Dick Day and he was just making a

Page 10
call to make sure he didn't have three heads or something. And during that conversation Frank Strong said to Henry Brandis, "Why in the world is he leaving Chapel Hill to come to Columbus? Any sensible man would go the other way." So Henry Brandis said to Dean Strong, "Would you leave your deanship out there and come here?" And Frank Strong said, "Yes, I have two more years of my deanship and then I'd be delighted to leave here and go to Chapel Hill." So that's how we got Frank Strong who then was the President of the Association of American Law Schools which is the association of all law schools and that's one of the great prestigious jobs. So here's Frank Strong, President of the AALS and long time dean at the Ohio State coming to us because Dick Day went there for want of a secretary. So in any event, Dick Day came. Also in 1961 John Scott came. John was from Alabama and had been number one in his class and had gone into the Army. Then he went to Harvard Law School and Dean Griswold was the dean and was in tax. He asked John Scott to stay on for a year or two and help him with some books. So John stayed and helped write Griswold's tax books. Then he went to Randolph Hall which is the big tax firm in D.C. and he was a tax lawyer there. Then he went over to the Internal Revenue where he was in the think-tank of their tax law section for three or four years. Then he went to New York where he was the tax partner in a Wall Street firm. He came down. I remember Henry Brandis telling him that, "You'll do a great job if you just block three zeros off all your illustrations." He was a big time tax lawyer, so he was experienced, very experienced and a very humorous guy. He stayed

Page 11
with us for a long time. So then we got Ken Penegar. Ken, again, was an undergraduate here and he had been extremely active in student government. He'd been the general counsel or the vice president of the senior class or something. Then he was in the Navy for three years and then he came back to law school and was articles editor of the Law Review or something. Then he went to Yale for graduate work. He was very interested in international relations; he thought it was not east-west, but north-south and that we should build up relations with Latin America. He did a lot of work at Yale in that area. Then he clerked for Judge Fayhe on the D.C. Court of Appeals. Then he came here. We liked his international flavor and it was '62 and the war on poverty was starting. We always say, "What would you like to teach if you come here?" And he said he'd like to teach a poverty law course and he'd like to do it with the three law schools; to meet each week at a different law school so that there would be some interchange physically and so on. So that sounded great, so he started a course on poverty law and had to make it up, you know. And he met one week here and one week at N.C. Central and one week at Duke.
ANN McCOLL:
Would the students go to each school?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
The students would all travel around so they'd get to know the other. And they'd break for coffee to go to the Student Union so they would have some exposure to the different environments, which was very good. He had them all doing empirical work. One thing I remember that he came up with, the students did, that was it important to have a council or not for

Page 12
drunken driving? So they all went to the drunken driving court and their conclusion was that it was not important in relation to guilt or innocence because the policeman said they were going so fast and they had such and such blood content and that was the evidence. But it made a heck of a lot of difference in terms of sentence. Those that showed up without a lawyer lose their licenses and go to jail and those who showed up with a lawyer would always get a suspended sentence if they promised to go see the Alcohol Clinic or something. But I thought that was very good to have some empirical study. So Ken stayed with us for four or five years.
ANN McCOLL:
Did he teach that course each year?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes, it went on. At about that time the Speaker Ban controversy came.
ANN McCOLL:
So this was mid sixties?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes, '62 or '63. And he and I were the first faculty. The students came to see the lawyers and we had the meetings with the students on what to do about it and everything. So he and I were the first two faculty to get involved in that. Then he left to be the dean at Tennessee. Then he left there to be the dean at Southern Methodist. Now he's the assistant to the Chancellor. I don't know the title, but that's where he is. I kept in touch with him over the years because we're both Southerners for Economic Justice with W.W. Finlader and Bob Hall and the Southern Institute and so on. We really started off as a front group for the Textile Workers Union in their fight with the J.P. Stevens Company. That's why we were formed. So Ken was a stalwart there

Page 13
over the years.
Then also, we hired Pete Millett to teach taxes. I guess somebody was away or something, but this was 1962 and Pete Millett had gone to Harvard undergraduate and then married a North Carolinian and had been in the Navy. There seems to be a pattern developing. Then he came here to law school. He was in the same class with Julius Chambers. The year that Julius Chambers was a second year student, we changed the method of selecting the Editor in Chief. Up until that time, the number one person in the class was automatically the Editor in Chief. And George Hardy who came here and said, "We didn't do it this way in Louisiana because the number one in the class may be a nerd or whatever. We want somebody who can work with the other people and who can know something about journalism or something." So we changed it to the top three and then the students recommend and the faculty appoints. So that was when Julius Chambers was in his second year. Then Julius Chambers went on to be number one in his class and had we not changed it, he would have been automatically the Editor in Chief. Well, number two in the class was Pete Millet and so the students had to vote on which one should be the Editor in Chief. At that time there was a Law Review banquet for the outgoing and the incoming members of the Law Review and past members of the Law Review, so it was in a sense, an elitist thing and you'd get a judge or somebody to give a speech. At Cornell where they did that, they wore tuxedos and there was liquor. There was a bar before the dinner. Well, at that time there was no place where you could get a drink that would admit Negroes. So if we elected Julius Chambers the editor

Page 14
and the Editor in Chief presides over the dinner, that meant we would have to have the annual Law Review dinner in a campus facility where they don't serve liquor and that was sort of a…. It was crazy, but that became an issue, whereupon Pete Millett said, "I withdraw from the race."
ANN McCOLL:
When he realized that was…
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
He did not want that. He withdrew in favor of Julius Chambers whereupon we did away with the Law Review dinner. We solved the problem. And then later on, some years later, they revived it in the sense there's now a Law Review breakfast to which everybody is invited. But that was Pete Millet. I thought that was great of him to withdraw in favor of Julius Chambers and he said, "Julius Chambers is number one in the class and he can get along with everybody and that he ought to get it." He made the nominating speech for Julius Chambers.
ANN McCOLL:
Was Julius Chambers the first black chief?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
He was the first black editor of a Law Review outside of a black law school anywhere at any time.
ANN McCOLL:
And this was in the early 1960's?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. "Time" magazine came down and wrote a big thing about it and "Life" made a big thing about it. Earl Warren, the Chief Justice, called me and asked me if Julius Chambers wanted to be a clerk for him. I guess he called Henry Brandis. I got a call from Arthur Goldberg who was then the Secretary of Labor asking me if Julius Chambers would like to move into the Secretary's office. Bobby Kennedy, who was the Attorney General, called down here, so he was a rarity and a great person. But he

Page 15
told me that he…. There's always the big firm that's the end of the rainbow. Everybody wants to go King and Spaulding or something. That's the milieu. Well, Julius Chambers told me he went up to Covington and Burlington which is the traditional large top D.C. law firm and was interviewed there and four or five of the senior partners called him, "Boy". They'd say, "Well, boy, why would you like to come work for this firm? You know we don't have any coloreds here." You know? That sort of thing, which is where we were in civilization as it's so-called.
But in any event, back to Pete Millett. He was a very nice guy and he stayed here about two years and I think he was replacing somebody. I can't recall. But in any event, he went…. Florida State and Tallahassee opened. There had been no law school there and they were creating one. Pete's wife was from Tallahassee and her father knew somebody, so Pete got an invitation from the President of Florida State to come down and help organize the new law school. They were bringing in an elderly retired dean at Iowa to be the dean with the understanding that he'd get it started in three or four years and then step aside. I think Pete Millett was told that he would be the successor. But he left and went to Tallahassee. Then in 1962, we also got Ernie Folk who was in a wheelchair. He had had infant…. When there were Salk vaccine cures [unknown]. So his legs were withered and so on and he had a wheelchair. If you go to the bathroom here you'll see the Ernie Folk bathroom because we built the law school here while he was here and the ramp and those were all known for Ernie Folk. They are

Page 16
accessible to a person in a wheel chair. He had worked in the Department of Justice and he was in corporations. He became big in corporate law. He was just a very nice fellow who had taught at the University of South Carolina for three years after he left the Department of Justice and we were looking for someone in corporations. He wanted to come here and that's what he did. He was a scholar and he was not really interested in much else. He was sort of like Dan Dobbs. He stayed here five or six years and got an offer from Virginia, which was his alma mater. So he went back to Virginia. Also in 1962 we hired Bob Byrd. Bob had been the Editor in Chief of the Law Review here and had gone into the Army for three years or so and then had come to law school here. Then he went to work for the Institute of Government. He'd worked there two or three years and Albert Coates liked him very much and Henry Brandis liked him very much. So he was hired. There was a little dispute in the faculty. Dick Phillips and I thought he wasn't broad enough. He hadn't had any experience. He'd done most of his Army at Fort Bragg. He was from Johnson County which is where Albert Coates is from. He'd come to UNC as an undergraduate, went to Fort Bragg, came back to law school, went to the Institute of Government and I assume he had been to Washington or New York or somewhere, but we thought he was too provincial and too limited. But we were convinced that he wasn't by the vote of the majority of the faculty. He was hired and he's been here ever since 1962. Then he became our dean for five years. At the end of five years he announced he didn't want to be it any more. So that was the early faculty and I would say

Page 17
that quickly looking it over, there was Dick Phillips from practice in Laurinburg, a good successful broad-based practice with a guy who became the governor, Seymour Wurfel with his thirty years in the Army and Robinson Everett with his broad community and Tom Christopher who started the Food and Drug Institute and Dan Dobbs who became a scholar but was not hired for that reason, and Dick Day who was the anti-trust person, and John Scott who had governmental experience and private practice and Ken Peniger and Pete Millet and Ernie Folk and Bob Byrd. They were the ones we hired first. If I could categorize them at all…. I guess I ought to bring in Frank Strong, too. There was a good deal of worldly experience and none of them were right out of law school. Robin Hinson was and left. George Hardy was right out of a Rhodes scholarship, but he left. So I guess we learned something. I don't know. But for the next ten or so people we hired, they'd all had legal experience. Dan Dobbs had been very active in the Democratic Party. They didn't have public defenders, but Dan Dobbs was an unofficial public defender. So that was the categorizing of the early faculty.
ANN McCOLL:
Did you talk a lot together? I mean, was there a lot of faculty interaction, or would you say it's a [unknown]?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Well, when I came through everybody was in their late fifties and I was in my mid thirties. When we came here, my daughter Suzie was three weeks old and my daughter Phoebe was four years old and my son Danny was five years old. So when we came from Washington, and I still retained ties with my old law firm, and until Dick came the following year, I had George Hardy

Page 18
who was just married and he was my friend. Then there was the older crowd. We would be invited to dinner at their house the last three weeks of the school year because they would have remembered that they hadn't seen us all year long. But then there was a Christmas party and you know, there'd be the Dean's party. There would be about four or five parties during the year to which everybody, all the faculty, was invited. And they were always…. For all these old people, and I thought of them as old people then - I don't any longer - they were pretty riotous and they had known each other for thirty years. They went back to a boarding house where they'd all lived as singles where they didn't have radio or television and they'd put on their weekly things, skits or whatever. Freddy McCall would start to tap dance, you know, the buck and wing, and some people would start harmonizing and there were fun parties. They had what they called Chapel Hill punch which was ice and bourbon with a little lemon juice or something floating in it. It was the strongest drink I ever had. If you put some mint in it, you'd have a mint julep, only not frozen. So they were fun parties, but there was very little…. They all had a life and it was hard for them to change their life to bring us into it, so there wasn't much social exchange. Then when Dick came he was my friend. Then the younger ones came and we had a younger group. But at about the same time, Robinson Everett was here and he was a contemporary and he also taught at Duke, so I started to have lunch once a week with Bill Van Alstein who was at Duke and new. And another guy who taught Constitutional law there, Larry Wallace and our

Page 19
Chancellor. They were the young people at Duke. So we used to all have weekly lunch either at the [unknown] over here or at their Blue and White, whatever their cafeteria was. And then Floyd McKissick was practicing law in Durham. So if I wanted to talk integration law or something, whatever. You know, here's the Supreme Court. What the hell do you think they're up to? Who do you talk it over with? My colleagues didn't get much excited. I mean, they'd seen them come and go over four or five decades. So those were my friends. Bill Van Alstein and Floyd McKissick sort of were a group. And Robinson Everett and Larry Wallace.

Page 20
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]

[TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
So he'd come over and rehearsed quite a bit. He could not get tenure at Duke because they said he hadn't written enough. Well, having been let go from Duke he got a job with the Solicitor General's office where his job was to write briefs for the Supreme Court and argue cases there. He'd been a law clerk for Justice Black and the Editor in Chief of the Columbia Law Review. So he stayed. He just retired about two years ago. He was the senior person which meant he got the difficult cases and the significant cases. The Solicitor General doesn't argue very often, so he was the chief worker there over the years. He stayed on with other Solicitor Generals coming and going. I always thought they made a big mistake at Duke in letting Larry Wallace go. So that was the group. It was I'd say in contrast to this faculty. For maybe eight or ten years it has emphasized scholarship and what we look at is will the person make a significant contribution to legal literature. Will they write something? So we look at people who will write something. That was not emphasized in my earlier years here. We looked for somebody who…. Mark Twain, no John Hopkins…. No. Somebody said that the best education you can get is a student at one end of the log and John Hopkins at the other. John Hopkins was the President of Dartmouth and that was said a long time ago, but I always thought that that's the best education. You look at somebody you want to have sitting on the end of the log with the student. As a matter of fact, McCormick who is McCormick on Evans, and is reputed to be the great evidence person and is

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acknowledged with his ten volumes or something, was a dean here at one time. He was a terrible teacher and everybody was very, very happy when he left here to go be the dean at Texas. From then on, they wanted someone like Wettach who had flown a Navy airplane and landed in the drink and didn't panic, you know. And it was fun. So we used to have great parties when the elderly were here and then in the early sixties when we had Tom Christopher and Dick Phillips and Dick Day and all these people, again, Chapel Hill punch was the order of the day. And we jitterbugged and did not do the buck and wing. I don't think that goes on. There's a much larger faculty. I guess you might say a more serious, more book oriented and much less public service oriented. We really just went through excellent candidates in the corporate area. Whether they did anything for the public was never raised.
ANN McCOLL:
You looked at publishing?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
We looked at their publication record primarily and then there was some question about the legal extended programs. What do you call those things?
ANN McCOLL:
Continuing legal education?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Continuing. CLE. They say, "Well, is that CLE type of material or was that something of a profound nature?" So it was not only whether they wrote, but the caliber of their writing and we're talking about…. I'm very pleased. Two people, each with fifteen years legal experience, so we're looking for someone to replace Farrabee Taylor and not a beginning person, but an

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experienced person. But whether they were in the Boy's Club or did something, we don't know.
ANN McCOLL:
What about teaching styles? You have a fairly unique teaching style here. How did you develop you style?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
I think I started off the same way everybody else did in that I used to go into class and I'd have a lot of prepared questions and I'd have people recite the case and then when they got finished I had five questions to ask and was ready to ad lib if it were appropriate. It was about my second or third year here and it was a fairly large class and it was a dull class. Negotiable instruments or commercial papers or something. I took everything Bill Aycock had. The person who was reciting finished and I realized that my memory had gone out the window somewhere when they were half way through and I also realized that everybody else in that room's memory had. Nobody had listened. And I thought, "God, this is a waste of time." So I thought, "From now on, I'm not going to ask anybody to recite. I'll recite the cases and then ask my questions or take questions or something." And it worked real well. When I finally got to teach labor law, I'd go into the class and I would start off by saying, "Are there any questions?" And the questions would come and we'd have questions for fifteen minutes. Then we would get to where we were in the case books. So we'd go along a little bit and then at the next class, "Anybody got any questions or comments?" or something. I don't think it works now. But the student body in the sixties and seventies was much more relaxed. It was a smaller group to begin with. I mean, I had eighty in

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the first year class. And here we were in Chapel Hill and not everybody had a car. Very few people had cars. Most people lived in a dormitory. There was a dormitory for law students. So they got to know each other. And a lot of them had known each other as undergraduates. And they are all in the same one section. They'd go from contracts to torts to criminal law. So they get to know each other pretty well, so the peer pressure, the peer fear, sort of dissipates after awhile. Then we'd all go to Lenoir Hall after the 9:00 class. At 10:00 you go to Lenoir Hall and you had coffee and doughnuts. They had long tables and people read the "Tarheel" and there is interplay there. And Bill Aycock would be there.
ANN McCOLL:
But the faculty would be there?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. And you'd get to know the people from the English department and so on. It was sort of a custom. Everybody goes to Lenoir. And there were seven thousand all told in the University. So in any event, many of the students had uncles or fathers or grandfathers who were lawyers and they intended to go back to Smithfield or to Winston or to Tarboro or Wilmington or wherever. So there wasn't much anxiety about jobs. They had their golf tournament and that was a big thing. So it was a far more convivial, unpressured atmosphere where people talked. The classes were smaller once you got out of the Bar courses. Like in my anti-trust I'd have ten or fifteen and they would all talk. Then they would…. Say we met on Friday afternoon and we overlooked the baseball field and if there was a baseball game they'd all say, "Let's go over and do this at the baseball

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field." So we would usually. And people met under trees and that sort of thing. So it was literally, I would say, North Carolina whereas now it's just figuratively eighty percent North Carolina. And we had no women. I remember one year…. I don't know. When I came here I think there was one woman, Frances Hall in the whole law school. Then we didn't have any for a couple of years. Then we had three and there was Miss Fox and Miss Fish and Miss Allen. Miss Allen was black and she was one of the first blacks.
ANN McCOLL:
So you only had those three women?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. So there were very few women and there were very, very few blacks. The blacks hated the place. They called it the "icebox". A little story. Henry Frye graduated maybe in 1960 or something like that and he's now on the state Supreme Court. He had been the first black legislator since reconstruction. And he was on the Law Review and had been an Army captain before he came to law school. Well, the President of the student body whose name I forget, but he was from Roxboro wanted to talk to Henry Frye about the Barrister's Ball. The Barrister's Ball was a long dress affair at a night club somewhere and they wouldn't take the blacks. So what do you do with the few black people; law students? You can't say, "You can't come." And if you don't do it there you do it at the Country Club or somewhere. I don't know, but it was less convenient. So they had to talk to the blacks every year about the Barrister's Ball and they teased a little bit. They'd say, "Gee, my wife's been looking forward to this." Ultimately, they would all say, "Well, my cousin is

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getting married and we can't be here anyway." So they never went. But every year there was this thing. So the guy wanted to talk to Henry Frye about it and he asked me if I could have lunch with the two of them in Lenoir Hall because he did not want to be seen having lunch with a black person. Now this was the President of the student body of the law school in 1960. He wanted a faculty person present so, you know, it was sort of official business or something.
ANN McCOLL:
What did you say?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Sure. I mean, you can't fight everything. And I never said anything about it to anybody. That was not the sole attitude, but it was certainly a prevailing attitude. Henry Frye and Julius Chambers both told me that they had not exchanged a pleasantry or a good word with at least half of their classmates in three years that they were here. So they call it the "icebox" or something. And there would always be maybe two or three or four students here at any given time and their social life was over at N.C. Central. We had a Mr. Pollack, Don Pollack, who was here with Julius Chambers or a year after maybe, and he was six feet eight or nine and weighed 250 pounds. He would come to the library at night to study and he'd leave at 10:00 and he'd have parked his car two blocks away somewhere and he'd walk to his car and all the coeds would see him and start screaming or running. Here it's dark and here comes this six foot ten black man walking toward them. And you know, he said, "You think I'm a gorilla or something?" You don't have to be ultrasensitive to feel that this may not be the place for you. So it was very, very hard on

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the handful of blacks that we had during the sixties and seventies and I assume it was very hard on the women to be the only woman in a classroom of seventy or something. Or one of three women.
ANN McCOLL:
Do you remember if they would participate as much in class?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Well, yes. The fact is Doris Bray was an early woman and she was the Editor in Chief of the Law Review. And then Joan somebody followed her. So I don't know whether it was because of different admission standards or not, but certainly we had two successive women editors of the Law Review and then Susan Eringhous was the number two in her class to Gordon Gray and he was the editor and she was associate editor. She was one of four or five women in her class if that many. So the women did well. In class participation probably not. And again, I think that most of the women were from North Carolina and maybe they'd gone to…. I know Susan Eringhous had gone to St. Mary's which may not mean much to the general audience, but that's sort of, not flower arranging, but how to be a nice Southern woman as well as to learn, to cultivate your brain. So the cultural pattern is not to be aggressive, but rather to listen to everybody else first and then see if you can contribute something. So that was sort of the pattern.
ANN McCOLL:
Do you see a difference in the law school students that are at school now?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Yes. They all want to be number one in the class. They are very grade conscious. They didn't use to be grade

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conscious. A C grade was fine. I mean, you're going to work for your grandfather's firm anyway and there were no great…. We had smart people who wanted to be on the Law Review or something, but there was no great compulsion to go to Atlanta and get a job there. And there were a lot of sports activities; baseball games, tennis. A lot of people were active in their undergraduate's work. If you had been the rush chairman at the DKE fraternity or something, you would continue to be there and so there were a lot of ties to their undergraduate activities which didn't stop when they…. We were in the middle of the campus. You could get into the law school in the fifties and sixties if you'd graduated from undergraduate. It wasn't until the Viet Nam war where you were draft exempt if you were in law school. If you were in education. So you were draft exempt until you were twenty-two and graduated and then you went to law school for three years and you were twenty-five and then they stopped drafting. So suddenly our applications increased from 150 a year to 1000 a year. We had one person, Maury Gelblum was handling admissions as well as doing a lot of other things. So the only way to do it in a practical matter is to look at the grade point average and the LSAT and they became definitive. And everybody knew it. If they wanted to get out of the war, they'd better have a 3.5 grade point average. So it became far more competitive in admissions. Then the people who were here were competitive, so it became less friendly. Then we moved into this building and we're off the campus. You don't go to Lenoir. When was the last time you had lunch at Lenoir? You know, we're

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isolated and we have our own society here, which is grade conscious. The gold at the end of the rainbow is the big firm at 60,000 or 70,000 a year to begin with and billable hours. I'd never heard billable hours. That was an expression that didn't exist five years ago.
ANN McCOLL:
What about activities and student organizations?
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Well, somewhere in the late fifties and maybe the early sixties…. The fifties were supposed to be the "me" generation. You know, Eisenhower was the President and laid back. "Esquire" magazine had a series of articles in one issue, the fall issue which was the going back to school issue. So they had an issue on the student generation and I wrote the article…. They have one from the South and one from the Ivy Leagues and one from hither and yon and this was the Southern institution and I wrote the article on the current student generation. I spent a lot of time on it and sent out questionnaires. I was very active at that time in the YMCA here. Ann Queen took an interest and everybody did in "what is the apathy quota at UNC". My article that I wrote says that it's the same as always. We beat Duke or something or won the National Championship in basketball and everybody was excited, but they got excited about other things as well. But it needed something to spur them, but if something came along like school integration…. We had a lot of people at the Y who had gone to Dorothea Dix and they were starting the Big Sister and the Big Brother tutorial program because the little tots were going to the white schools for the first time and they needed somebody to help them with their math

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or whatever. So there was a lot of that going on. And a lot of the law students were involved in that. We moved into our house in 1960 and we had an apartment in our house for mothers-in-law. They are going to get old and they'll need a place and let's let them have their own kitchen and whatever. So we have an apartment in our house and neither of our mothers wanted to come here to visit or live upstairs with us. So we rented it to three law students. One was Jack Lewis who is now on the Court of Appeals. One was George Ragsdale who was on the Court and is now a big shot lawyer in Raleigh and was the chairman of our Board of Trustees. And Macky Redwine. So we had Jackie and Macky and George who were our three tenants. Jack was very active in the YMCA. George had been the President of the student body and he was the advisor to the student court or something and I remember that they started to integrate the theaters. They wouldn't let blacks in and there was an episode. Did we discuss this?
ANN McCOLL:
No.
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Shall I depart from the text?
ANN McCOLL:
Sure.
DANIEL H. POLLITT:
Things happen. We had two theaters across from each other on Franklin Street and neither would admit the blacks. So if the blacks in Chapel Hill wanted to see a movie they had to go to Durham and in Durham they could sit in the balcony. They couldn't sit in the balconies here. So they had a movie come to town, "All God's Children Got Wings". That's not the name of it. "T'ain't Necessarily So." George Gershwin. Something about the crippled guy who has the goat wagon and that's about it. So the

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English teacher at the black high school wanted her class to see this famous movie, so she went to the theater owner, the manager, and said, "I'd like to take my English class and we'll sit in the balcony or we'll come after the last show on Friday or we can come Saturday morning before you start running the show or whatever." And the guy just said, "No. You can't come into my theater." So she went to her preacher who was Mr. Manley at the First Baptist Church and Manley took it up with the ministerial council and Bob Seymour of the Bickley Memorial and Charlie Jones of the Community Church got excited. And they went down to see the manager and asked him if they couldn't come and see this movie and they told them no. So we decided to picket the theater. And it would be a professor and a black high school student was what we tried to arrange for half hour stints. I was the first picketer with a little black high school girl. I had a sign that said, "Segregation t'ain't necessarily so." Some people came out of the bar across the street and it was 6:00 or something and they were going back to the fraternity court to have their supper and there was this picketer, two picketers, and they weren't going to bother the black girl. So I was sort of fair game. George Regsdale came along and said, "Leave him alone. He's my professor." Or something or other. And I was being nonviolent and silent, you know. In any event, George got involved and the student body got involved and we picketed those two theaters and people would…. You could pay the price of admission, which was a dollar and a half or something and get your name in an ad urging them to change it. We would have five

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hundred names, you know. And nobody went to the theaters. I got to be a Saturday night person when the movie changed at 8:30 or 9:00 or something. I had that shift and I would sit there and there wouldn't be more than five people on a Saturday night when the second show started. So after awhile they opened up.
But an event like that would arouse the student body, but you'd need an event. So in my article in Esquire I said there is still the same sentiment and anxieties and they are the same as always and there are always about twenty percent or I think less than that. I think that about five percent of the population make the world go round. They initiate things. And then there are another twenty percent who are close followers and then there are another twenty percent who are couch potatoes. But I don't think it's changed over the years. I think the student body has…. You know, I have eighteen people in my seminar who are all self-selected and they are as nice a group of dedicated human beings as you'll find anywhere. Now I don't know who's in somebody else's seminar. In my courses we can self-select it. They don't have to take my course to pass the Bar and lead a happy life. But I think that they're great and given something. Like I think this current war, if they come back from finals and the new semester starts and if we're in war on January 15th, I expect the student body to react just the way the student body did in Viet Nam when we went into Cambodia at Kent State.
END OF INTERVIEW