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Oral History Interview with Daniel H. Pollitt, February 15, 1991. Interview L-0064-4. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007).
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  • Abstract
    This is the fourth interview in a nine-part series of interviews with civil liberties lawyer Daniel H. Pollitt. In this interview, Pollitt discusses his thoughts on race and athletics at UNC, as well as his involvement in student activism during the late 1950s and 1960s. Pollitt begins the interview by discussing the impact of the recruitment of African American athletes, like Charlie Scott—the first African American athlete to attend UNC on scholarship—and Bill Chamberlain. After describing how UNC's football coach was reluctant to recruit African American athletes on scholarship, Pollitt describes how he worked alongside Dean Smith as the faculty advisor to the campus NAACP to recruit Scott in the late 1960s. (Note: Pollitt says numerous times in the interview that Scott, and later Chamberlain, came to UNC in the late 1950s, but it was actually during the late 1960s.) Pollitt discusses how lingering racial tensions and discrimination in the broader community played a decisive factor in the recruitment of African American athletes. He devotes considerable attention to his work as a leader of the student YMCA-YWCA during the late 1950s and 1960s. Pollitt explains how the student Y was the center of student activism on campus during those years and describes in detail how he helped to organize Vietnam war protests among UNC students, even chartering buses to take students from UNC to Washington, D.C., to lobby their local legislators about the war and to participate in anti-war demonstrations. The interview concludes with Pollitt's brief discussion of his work with the American Association of University Professors (AAUP), which he elaborates on in later interviews.
  • Charlie Scott breaks the color line in UNC athletics
  • Breaking the color line and community involvement with Dean Smith
  • Organizing students via the Campus Y
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  • Finding aid to the Southern Oral History Program Collection
  • Database of all Southern Oral History Program Collection interviews
  • The Southern Oral History Program transcripts presented here on Documenting the American South undergo an editorial process to remove transcription errors. Texts may differ from the original transcripts held by the Southern Historical Collection.

    Funding from the Institute for Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this title.