Rochester Race Riot Papers

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Rochester race riot papers
Creator: Bub, William J., 1926-1980
Call Number: D.185
Dates: 1964-1966
Physical Description: 4 boxes, 1 albums, 1 package
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Biographical/Historical Note
Scope and Content
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Content List
Series I: Chronological file of newspaper clippings and articles
Series II: Subject files
Series III: Interviews
Series IV: Ephemera
Collection Overview
Title: Rochester race riot papers
Creator: Bub, William J., 1926-1980
Call Number: D.185
Dates: 1964-1966
Physical Description: 4 boxes, 1 albums, 1 package
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Biographical/Historical Note
These papers chronicle the July 24-26, 1964 racial disturbances in Rochester NY and their aftermath. The collection consists mainly of newspaper clippings, painstakingly collected and organized by William J. Bub, Jr. (1926-1980). Bub was a student at Syracuse University's Maxwell Graduate School of Citizenship and Public Affairs. This archive is the product of his research for a Masters thesis.

Violence and looting in Rochester spanned a period of approximately sixty hours, resulting in four deaths, at least 350 injuries, over 800 arrests, and property damage totalling more than a million dollars. The National Guard was called in to keep the peace. Dubbed"'smugtown" in the 1950s because of the comfort and complacency borne of the economic prosperity and amicable labor-management relations fostered by the Eastman Kodak Company and other large, successful, high-tech corporations, the riots represented a profound blow to Rochester's positive self-image. As the flames of discontent were replaced by the glare of the media spotlight, black and white Rochester residents were forced to reflect--from different perspectives and with different conclusions--on the causes and meanings of this devastating event.

The "riot" was precipitated by the arrest of an allegedly drunk and disorderly African- American man at a Joseph Avenue street dance. But even in its immediate aftermath, many looked to underlying social and environmental conditions to explain the events that followed. These conditions were analagous to those that existed in many Northern cities. They included a large and rapid influx of African-Americans from the South, the de-facto segregation of black arrivals in specific areas of the residential urban core, a failure to extend economic opportunities from white to black residents, the physical decay of black neighborhoods due to poverty and inadequate services, the routine exploitation of African-American tenants by white landlords, the neglect and persecution of blacks at the hands of an overwhelmingly white police force, inequities in educational instruction and facilities, and the inability of African-Americans to redress grievances through legitimate political channels. Rochester's was one of a trio of 'riots' in the summer of 1964. Together, they inaugurated the "long hot summers" of racial strife that marked the mid and late sixties. It is to the origins, effects, and implications of such events that the items in this collection ultimately speak.

Scope and Content
The first box contains newspaper clippings arranged chronologically--starting on July 25, 1964, the day after the rioting began, and ending in the summer of 1966. These clippings are culled primarily from Rochester's two daily newspapers, the Democrat and Chronicle and Times-Union. There are also some pieces from the New York Times and a considerable number of clippings from the Los Angeles Times documenting events in Watts the following summer.

The second box is arranged by subject. The first 34 folders are organized according to the subject divisions that Bub himself used. They are arranged alphabetically. The remaining folders have since been compiled from miscellaneous items in Bub's collection. The subject headings reflect Bub's interest in social issues contributing to racial unrest. Apart from newspaper clippings, Bub also kept articles from national and local magazines and other publications. Two of Bub's own essays are also included.

The third box of the collection consists of 30 reel to reel tapes. They contain newcasts and media interviews as well as William Bub's interviews of various members of the Rochester community concerning the causes and effects of the 'riot.' This box also includes index cards with the names of over 800 people arrested during the turmoil.

The final item in the collection is an album of 48 black and white 8 x 10 photographs of the riots. The pictures are likely those of local newspaper photographers although no credit is given by Bub. Researchers interested in the effects of the riot, specifically the arrival of IAF leader Saul Alinsky and the beginnings of FIGHT and other civil rights initiatives should also consult the Franklin Florence Papers (D.167).

New York (State)--Rochester
Rochester Race Riot (New York : 1964)
Race relations
Newspaper clippings
Interviews (Sound recordings)
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Gift of Jean U. Bub, 1984.Access
The Rochester race riot papers is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], Rochester race riot papers, D.185, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Administrative Information
Author: Finding aid prepared by Rare Books and Special Collections staff
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055

Content List
Series I: Chronological file of newspaper clippings and articles
Box 1, Folder 1-6Scrapbooks, July 25, 1964-March 30, 1965
Box 1, Folder 7-20Clippings, 1965
Box 1, Folder 21Clippings, Summer 1966
Box 1, Folder 22Clippings, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle and Rochester Times-Union
Box 1, Folder 23Clippings, New York Times
Box 1, Folder 24Clippings, Los Angeles Times
Box 1, Folder 25Clippings, other newspapers
Series II: Subject files
Folders 1-34 as organized by William Bub

Box 2, Folder 1-2Alinsky, Saul and FIGHT
Box 2, Folder 3Arraignments, arrests - Grand jury action
Box 2, Folder 4Authority conflict
Box 2, Folder 5Background miscellaneous
Box 2, Folder 6Big Brothers-Big Sisters
Box 2, Folder 7Cause and effect
Box 2, Folder 8Claims - liability
Box 2, Folder 9Clergy comment
Box 2, Folder 10Cost
Box 2, Folder 11Damage listing
Box 2, Folder 12Davidson vigilantes
Box 2, Folder 13Duplicates
Box 2, Folder 14Editorial comment - Rochester Democrat and Chronicle (D&C)
Box 2, Folder 15Editorial comment - Out of Town
Box 2, Folder 16Editorial comment - Rochester Times-Union
Box 2, Folder 17Ethnic groups - Rochester
Box 2, Folder 18Hoover report
Box 2, Folder 19Housing
Box 2, Folder 20Human relations - NAACP
Box 2, Folder 21Interview transcripts (W. Bub with anonymous person from local press)
Box 2, Folder 22Letters to the editor
Box 2, Folder 23Merchants Association
Box 2, Folder 24National magazine stories
Box 2, Folder 25National politics - statements
Box 2, Folder 26News reports
Box 2, Folder 27Other riots
Box 2, Folder 28Photographs from newspapers

Box 2, Folder 29Police
Box 2, Folder 30-31Police Advisory Board
Box 2, Folder 32Riot
Box 2, Folder 33Voter registration
Box 2, Folder 34Miscellaneous information
Box 2, Folder 35William Bub essays: "The Rochester Riots viewed as collective behavior" and "Riot editorial responsibility"
Box 2, Folder 36Gannett publications
Box 2, Folder 37Local agencies' publications
Box 2, Folder 38Miscellaneous copies
Box 2, Folder 39Monroe County Human Relations Commission publications
Box 2, Folder 40Papers, sermons, and essays on the Rochester Riots
Box 2, Folder 41U.S. Government publications
Series III: Interviews
Audio tapes: 1-13 as numbered by William Bub

Box 3, Object 1Bub: Anonymous interview with man from downtown neighborhood
approximately 30 minutes

Box 3, Object 2Bub: Anonymous interview with journalist from local press
approximately 30 minutes

Box 3, Object 3Channel 13 newscasts from day of riots
Includes commentary and interviews with 3 "negro leaders": Robert Morrison, president of Rochester chapter of the NAACP, Hannah Starrs CORE spokesperson, Constance Mitchell, 3rd Ward Supervisor (approximately 45 minutes)

Box 3, Object 4Meeting of black group to evaluate riot, various speakers
2 hours

Box 3, Object 5Analysis of situation
Terrible sound quality, speaker and date unknown, two sides of tape (approximately 2 hours)

Box 3, Object 6Meeting of workers from Montgomery Neighborhood Center and Genesee Settlement House
Workers are discussing efforts and programs already instituted and what more needs to be done (2 sides, 1 hour and 40 minutes)

Box 3, Object 7CBS newscast from August 17th, 1964: interview with black youth, a leader in the gang the 'Matadors' and participant in riot
4 minutes

Box 3, Object 8Radio comments by 2 Monroe County Supervisors: 3rd Ward Supervisor Constance Mitchell and 7th Ward Supervisor Maxwell Walters
Box 3, Object 8aBub: Anonymous interview with black woman from community
2 sides (1 hour 40 minutes)

Box 3, Object 8bBub: Anonymous interview with woman
Very poor sound (2 hours)

Box 3, Object 9Bub: Anonymous interview with African-American man
Sound is poor (30 minutes)

Box 3, Object 10Bub: Anonymous interview with member of the working press
Good sound quality (2 hours)

Box 3, Object 11Interview with social worker at Baden Street Settlement House, two weeks after riot
Box 3, Object 12Side 1: Bub: Anonymous interview with member of "mass communications profession." Side 2: Bub: Anonymous interview with another member of mass media
Both interviews are 50 minutes each

Box 3, Object 13Bub: Anonymous interview with member of "communications business"
45 minutes

Box 3, Object 14Newscasts: includes statements by city manager Porter Homer on state of emergency and curfew, helicopter crash
16 minutes

Box 3, Object 15Newscast of helicopter crash during '64 riot, WRVM news
3 minutes

Box 3, Object 16Recording of WOKR Channel 13 film
Includes statements by Robert Morrison, president of Rochester branch of NAACP, Porter Homer, city manager, Mayor Frank Lamb, Governor Rockefeller, sound is difficult at times (50 minutes)

Box 3, Object 17Bub: Anonymous interview with telephone company employee
Poor sound (3 minutes)

Box 3, Object 18-19Blank - discarded
Box 3, Object 20"Mobilization for youth" discussion by Rochester professionals on delinquency prevention
The conversation is not directly related to riots or issues of race. Good sound, two sides (2 hours)

Box 3, Object 21Side 1: Youth Board meeting with Bub and others, not related to the riot. Side 2: Bub: Anonymous interview with man (identified on tape box as Howard Logan)
Approximately 1 hour

Box 3, Folder 22Side 1: blank (break part way through tape). Side 2: first half of tape is blank.
On either side of tape break is material but dialogue comes out backwards (apparently taped on multi-track machine?) Tape box reads "Riot? Judge Healy?"

Box 3, Object 23-28Unprocessed tapes
6 tapes remain in metal boxes. They are a different size than the other tapes and have not been processed due to lack of a tape player that can work with these tapes. Tapes are not labelled.

Series IV: Ephemera
Box 4Index cards of riot arrests
814 cards
Arranged alphabetically by name with address and charges with some dispositions

Box 4Photograph album
Black-and-white photographs of the riot and aftermath
48 photographs

Package 1Life Magazine, March 8, 1968
Includes article "Race and poverty"

Package 1Sepia, November 1965
Includes articles on the Los Angeles riots

Box 3Grimshaw, Allen Day. A study in social violence: urban race riots in the United States
PhD University of Pennsylvania 1959. Ann Arbor: University Microfilms, Inc., 1965

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