Elbert Parr Tuttle: Chief Jurist of the Civil Rights Revolution

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University of Georgia Press, Oct 1, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography - 376 pages
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This is the first--and the only authorized--biography of Elbert Parr Tuttle (1897-1996), the judge who led the federal court with jurisdiction over most of the Deep South through the most tumultuous years of the civil rights revolution. By the time Tuttle became chief judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, he had already led an exceptional life. He had cofounded a prestigious law firm, earned a Purple Heart in the battle for Okinawa in World War II, and led Republican Party efforts in the early 1950s to establish a viable presence in the South. But it was the intersection of Tuttle's judicial career with the civil rights movement that thrust him onto history's stage.

When Tuttle assumed the mantle of chief judge in 1960, six years had passed since Brown v. Board of Education had been decided but little had changed for black southerners. In landmark cases relating to voter registration, school desegregation, access to public transportation, and other basic civil liberties, Tuttle's determination to render justice and his swift, decisive rulings neutralized the delaying tactics of diehard segregationists--including voter registrars, school board members, and governors--who were determined to preserve Jim Crow laws throughout the South.

Author Anne Emanuel maintains that without the support of the federal courts of the Fifth Circuit, the promise of Brown might have gone unrealized. Moreover, without the leadership of Elbert Tuttle and the moral authority he commanded, the courts of the Fifth Circuit might not have met the challenge.

 

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Contents

1 The Legal Lynching of John Downer
1
2 The Great Migration
8
3 Life Was a Breeze
14
4 College Years
26
5 Sara Sutherland
31
6 Founding a Law Firm and Raising a Family
41
7 Gearing Up for War
52
8 The War Years
60
17 The Costs of Conscience
193
The Battleground
203
19 The Fight for the Right to Vote
218
20 But for Birmingham
235
21 The Houston Conference
253
22 Moving On
267
23 The City Almost Too Busy to Hate
274
24 Family and Friends
282

9 Building a Republican Party in Georgia
78
10 The 1952 Republican National Convention
86
11 The Washington Years
100
12 The Great Writ
117
Nine Men
128
Brown I and II
153
15 From Plessy to Brown to Buses
168
16 The Desegregation of the University of Georgia
174
25 A Jurisprudence of Justice
292
26 Hail to the Chiefand Farewell
315
APPENDIX 1 Law Clerks to Judge Tuttle
327
APPENDIX 2 Military Honors
329
APPENDIX 3 Awards and Honors
331
NOTES
333
INDEX
375
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Anne Emanuel is a professor of law at Georgia State University. She clerked for Judge Tuttle during his tenure on the Fifth Circuit. In addition, Emanuel has practiced in a private law firm and clerked for Chief Justice Harold Hill of the Georgia Supreme Court.

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