Alabama Polytechnic Institute/Auburn University


Alabama Commission on Higher Education

Zukoski was vice-chair of the Committee on Higher Education of the Alabama Educational Commission. He wrote to API VP Mullins soliciting views regarding the bill that would create an Alabama Commission on Higher Education. Charles F. Zukoski to David Mullins, August 6, 1959.

Various presidents of state-supported institutions of higher education had expressed an interest in the bill that would establish an Alabama Commission on Higher Education. What would be the position of Auburn and Alabama? Zukoski to Mullins, August 12, 1959.

Mullins supported the idea of a Commission on Higher Education, but believed it needed further study before the legislature enacted a bill. Mullins to Zukoski, October 14, 1959.

Alabama Committee for Better Schools

Robert C. Anderson—Executive VP—suggested to Draughon that he consider establishing a voluntary Commission on Higher Education. He doubted that this would satisfy Zukoski, who’s president of the ACBS, but it might head off legislative action. Anderson to Draughon, February 7, 1962.

Anderson and J. Jefferson Bennett—VP for Administration at the University of Alabama—received draft copies of a bill to create the Alabama Commission on Higher Education. It incorporated changes in the bill drafted following the 1959 report of the Alabama Education Commission. J. Rufus Bealle to Anderson and Bennett, July 31, 1964.

Anderson attended a recent meeting of the ACBS, which had been called "to discuss the possibility of some formal device for coordination of higher education in Alabama." After the meeting, Anderson and Bennett discussed the possible support of something that could supplant "a more rigid plan forced upon us by the legislature." He attached a copy of the 1959 bill to create a Commission on Higher Education, which had been drafted by Dave Mullins and Jeff Bennett. It was referred to committee and got no further than that in 1959. Anderson to Draughon, August 5, 1964.

"I do not believe any such legislation [as discussed in Anderson’s letter of August 5] should be introduced except as a substitution for a bill to create a central board of control." Draughon to Anderson, August 6, 1964.

University of Alabama

Draughon wrote to the president of the University of Alabama and Alabama College [Montevallo], saying that he enclosed a draft bill for public education in Alabama. He proposed this as a substitute for the bill introduced by the Folsom administration. The substitute had no changes in substances, but did clarify the Folsom bill. Draughon asked their permission to introduce the substitute bill. Draughon to John M. Gallalee (Alabama) and John T. Caldwell (Montevallo), July 6, 1949.

Gallalee wrote to Draughon that the cooperation demonstrated between Auburn and Alabama in the current session of the legislature had been "stimulating." Gallalee to Draughon, August 30, 1949.

Draughon thanked Gallalee for his letter of August 30, saying "the genuine understanding and accord" with which they’d approached the legislature had been a pleasure. He complimented Gallalee for his "rugged integrity" and said higher education needed more of that and less "table pounding." He suggested that Auburn, Alabama, and Montevallo begin plans soon for the next session. Draughon also said that he would like to involve the other colleges, but had reservations. He was unsure of how far he could go with them "in a frank discussion of the problems." Draughon to Gallalee, September 12, 1949.

Auburn had requested an additional appropriation from the Building Commission to meet an emergency situation. Some apparently believed that they had gone behind the back of Alabama in doing so. Draughon apologized for any misunderstanding. Draughon to Gallalee, June 24, 1952.

Draughon wrote to Gallalee upon the latter’s retirement: "…you and I…are the only ones who really understand the wearing burdens were have borne at Auburn and University these last busy years when so much had to be done with so little." Draughon to Gallalee, May 2, 1953.

Draughon told Jeff Bennett (University of Alabama) that Dave Mullins was in Montgomery trying to determine what should be done in the wake of the Goodwyn Bill’s failure to pass. "Notes on a Telephone Conversation," December 7, 1955.

Draughon congratulated J.H. Newman upon his appointment as acting president of the University of Alabama. He urged him to assume the full authority of his office, as if he had a permanent appointment. He based this advice upon experience, as he had served as acting president of Auburn for eighteen months without imagining that he’d been appointed full time. Finally, Draughon assured Newman that he had no plans that could in any way harm the University of Alabama. Draughon to Newman, December 31, 1956.

Executive VP of API congratulated the new president of the University of Alabama regarding the latter’s recent speech on the state’s educational needs. "The Alabama Study Commission has felt that its work would only be effective to the degree that its findings and recommendations were presented to and widely understood by the people of the state." Mullins to Frank Rose, August 22, 1958.


The original request from the Division of Instruction (as opposed to Extension and Research) was for a $788,000 increase, but funds were not available to support this. Most importantly, API needed additional faculty to meet the demands of a growing student body. Draughon to Albert Boutwell and Noble Russell, July 16, 1953 (attachment).

Draughon denied rumors that he had entered into an agreement with presidents of other state colleges relative to increased appropriations. He had informed other presidents that API’s needs were so critical that he intended to request additional funds. Furthermore, Auburn had not opposed the appropriations requests of any college or the public schools. Draughon to State Senators, August 29, 1953.

The current education bill provided increases for extension and the experiment station, but none for instructional work, where there were also critical needs. The governor might propose increases in the latter by executive amendment, although this had generated "vigorous opposition by certain groups who would in no way be affected." API needed the trustee’s help with state senators in their areas. He denied that API had opposed requests by other colleges or the public schools and assured the trustees that he had broken no agreements with other colleges. He had consistently pressed for increases "for all three divisions of API" (research, extension, and instruction). Draughon to Board of Trustees, August 29, 1953.

Auburn, Alabama, and the other state colleges had agreed "to support wholeheartedly the legislative requests of all, and work in harmony toward that end." Draughon to Gentlemen, March 4, 1955.

A 1911 graduate from Evergreen wrote that API had few friends in the vicinity who were "in accord with the new administration in Montgomery." They mayor was an "an administration man," but also "an Alabama man." The state representative—R.G. Kendall—was "a friend of Auburn," but "not an administration man." He did have strength in the House, however, and would use it for Auburn. M.M. Cardwell to Draughon, March 15, 1955.

"The public schools and the colleges are united in full support of a unified legislative request for the coming biennium." Draughon to Dear Friends, March 22, 1955.

The current legislature provided "substantial increases" for the API budget, provided the Goodwyn Amendment passed. David W. Mullins to Jack Butler, September 12, 1955.

Representatives of the API Faculty Council, API Unit of AEA, and President of the API Chapter of AAUP urged passage of the Goodwyn Amendment. They called for contributions to support a publicity campaign, the major expense of which had been borne by AEA up to this point. B.F. Hoerlein, et al., to Faculty and Staff, November 10, 1955.

Draughon had spoken with the president of the University of Alabama regarding erecting signs in support of the Goodwyn Amendment at Ligon Field for the Auburn-Alabama game on the 26th. He communicated this to the chair of the Alabama Citizens’ Committee for Schools. Draughon to Truman Hobbs, November 14, 1955.

Signs measuring 3x10 feet would be hung above the gates at Ligon Field. Jeff Bennett to Draughon, November 19, 1955.

The radio broadcast of the Auburn-Alabama game included spot announcements urging citizens to voter their preferences on December 6. "Spot Announcements," November 26, 1955.

On December 6, 1955, Alabama citizens would vote on the Goodwyn Amendment to the Constitution, which proposed a new tax to support public education from the primary through the graduate/professional level. The director of the Extension Service urged the passage of the proposal. "P.O. Davis Says," [c. December 1955].

The presidents of Auburn and Alabama (Oliver C. Carmichael) issued a joint statement in support of the Goodwyn Amendment. Draughon and Carmichael, "A Joint Message," [December 1955].

The Goodwyn Amendment was called a tax on adjusted gross income, but it exempted the Big Mules and the Black Belt planters. Alabama would have more funds for public education if the state eliminated the segregated system, eliminated sales tax exemptions that favored big business and agriculture, and taxed property at a reasonable rate. Communist Party of Alabama, "Goodwyn Tax Would Soak the Poor!" [c. December 1955].

What would API do in the wake of the Goodwyn Amendment’s defeat? Every effort would be made to maintain existing salary levels for the remainder of the fiscal year, but this would require sacrifice in every other area. API would continue to press for a special session of the legislature to relieve public education. Draughon to API Employees, December 10, 1955.

The Goodwyn Amendment lost "by a considerable margin," but this may have reflected opposition to the method of raising funds, rather than the idea itself. The voters might react more favorably to a bond issue. (This was a form letter written by a vendor of school office equipment.) Donald R. Pritchard to Dear Sir, December 12, 1955.

The defeat of the Goodwyn Amendment should not be taken as a lack of citizen support for public education. There had been many other reasons given for opposing it. Hobbs to Mullins, December 14, 1955.

At the suggestion of Fuller Kimbrall, Director of Finance, Draughon called Carmichael (president of the University of Alabama) and restated the position that Mullins (Auburn) had earlier communicated to Bennett (Alabama). Carmichael was "not very cordial" and said "’I guess it was foolish of us to try to have any unified legislative program in the first place.’" Draughon assured him that API was "standing first for the appropriations in full made last summer" and that he had "no intimation that this was coming up." Carmichael replied that "your man Pick" was responsible for it. Draughon explained that General Pick had no connection with Auburn and had not consulted him regarding this question. Carmichael said, "’…it’s no good trying to have a unified program when somebody is always starting these brush fires.’" Draughon told Carmichael that he thought "this proposal [Pick’s proposal?] would be a great thing for the State" and that "it ought to be located at Auburn" because API "had worked toward it for so long." If Draughon had "known anything about the proposal coming up" he would have notified Carmichael. Draughon concluded that he thought "we cannot expect much cooperation from the University." Draughon, Notes on Telephone Conversation, January 31, 1956.

Biennial appropriations for Auburn and Alabama were provided in Act 343 of the 1955 regular session of the legislature. Subsequent to failure of the Goodwyn Amendment, the second special session of the 1956 legislature amended 343 in Act 32, which reduced the appropriations of both schools by a combined total of $415,000. Estimates of revenue indicated that available funds would not even meet the levels provided in Act 32. Auburn and Alabama drafted a brief to the Supreme Court which argued that Act 32 violated the Alabama Constitution. William J. Samford to David W. Mullins, December 22, 1956.

The brief argued that "it did not appear to be in good faith for the Legislature to require these Institutions to be cut to the bone by Act 32 and then be required to suffer equal fund reductions [as the result of a shortfall of the funds anticipated in Act 32]. It was the Legislature’s assurance that such fund reduction would not take place, and the last sentence of Section 1 [in Act 32] was this guarantee. Accordingly, this guarantee could not be removed and still retain any semblance of the Legislature’s intention." William J. Samford to David W. Mullins, January 9, 1957 (attachment).

The Supreme Court ruled that the guarantee mentioned in Samford to Mullins, January 9, 1957, was "so uncertain and indefinite as to render it unenforceable." Mullins to Draughon, February 15, 1957 (attachment).

API’s state appropriation would be prorated 10 percent during the final four months of the current fiscal year. Mullins to Draughon, May 30, 1958.

Draughon had spoken with President Rose at the University of Alabama regarding the possibility of discussing their mutual needs in preparation for the next session of the legislature. Academic Deans, Minutes, July 31, 1958.

State college presidents met in Birmingham on August 28 to discuss their legislative requests. The same group was scheduled to meet with the governor the following week. Administrative Council, Minutes, September 8, 1958.

After the second Democratic primary, state college presidents met with Governor-Nominate Patterson to discuss their financial needs. He invited them to return following the general election. Draughon felt like they had gotten a head start on budget preparation with the new administration. Administrative Council, Minutes, October 17, 1958.

Draughon had meet with the County Agents Association to discuss API’s budget request. Representatives of the Alabama Farm Bureau Federation were in attendance at the administrative council meeting, also with respect to the legislative request. Givhan agreed to work with Randolph, Griffin, and Lowder "to accomplish the program for Auburn. Randolph said the Farm Bureau had their own committees in each county with respect to Amendment V. Givhan said that if the amendment were approved it would be necessary either to take funds from someone else or get new revenue. He recommended the latter through a sales tax, as it would be "the quickest way." Administrative Council, Minutes, November 21, 1958.

API would set up county meetings in support of its legislative request. Sarver would identify contacts in each county. There would be a relatively small initial meeting, with a few local and a few API representatives, to discuss how best to approach the legislator in that district. Administrative Council, Minutes, December 1, 1958.

"I will attempt in the near future to get a legislative committee started for our county through some of the more capable Auburn men." Henry B. Steagall II to Draughon, December 1, 1958.

"I am enclosing a copy of Blue Print for Progress, which is a summary and justification of the appropriations which the Alabama Polytechnic Institute will request of the incoming legislature." Draughon to Members of the Legislature, December 16, 1958.

"I am writing to ask if you will serve as a member of a County Committee in support of the legislative requests for Auburn in the coming session of the Alabama legislature….We are planning a series of small meetings with the County Committees to be held during the week, January 5-10, 1959." Draughon to _____, December 18, 1958.

Amendment V would provide funds of "an abattoir and meats laboratory." E.V. Smith to Arthur Tonsmeire, December 29, 1958.

"…if the educators of this state…would endorse and seek passage…of the program endorsed in the Mervyn Sterne report to the Alabama Education Commission, it would raise monies which our school people are seeking….any specialized taxes (such as HB 835 debated in the last legislature) will again receive much opposition." Hap Parker (Alabama Mining Institute) to Draughon, March 30, 1959.

Members of the Higher Education Committee of the Alabama Education Study Commission would be asked to appear before a Senate Committee. David W. Mullins to Vaughan Hill Robison, April 3, 1959.

Mullins had seen the governor’s budget regarding appropriations for Auburn and Alabama on a confidential basis. Alabama had been given a greater increase than Auburn. Alabama also had more funds for instruction, even though they had fewer students. Mullins discussed this with Bennett of Alabama, who agreed to help raise Auburn’s appropriation, but would not lower Alabama’s. But the governor was committed to economy and would probably not agree to increases. Legislative Budget Conference, Minutes, June 29, 1959.

Draughon, Mullins, and others met with E.T. York—director of the Extension Service—regarding a letter York had sent on June 23. Apparently, the letter said that the university’s budget goals included bringing extension agent’s salaries up to the national average. Draughon and Mullins took issue: instruction was underfunded; extension salaries were already above the national average; and it appeared that York was setting one division of the university against others. Draughon and Mullins believed that someone in extension had given misinformation to members of the legislature. Draughon felt like the governor’s budget was tight but fair to API. He did not want to risk its passage by any one group at Auburn engaging in special pleading. "Meeting Re: Legislative Program Matters," Minutes, [June 29, 1959].

Mullins met with the Administrative Council and the "team captains" involved in lobbying members of the legislature to discuss strategy. Among other things, he advised against complaints if one division of the university received a greater increase than others. "Joint Meeting…," Minutes, July 6, 1959.

The Ways and Means Committee approved House Bill 94, which reduced sales tax from 3 to 2.5 per cent and removed all exemptions except those relative to agriculture. This would mean $28 million more for education. "We hope you will consider this bill in a favorable light and make know your approval to your senator a representatives." Draughon to County Committee Chairs, July 15, 1959.

The Alabama Farm Bureau Federation opposed House Bill 94, [although this letter may have gone out before agricultural products were exempted]. Agriculture contributed to the economic progress of Alabama and deserved this consideration. Walter L. Randolph to Members of the Legislature, July 15, 1959.

Draughon urged support of House Bill 94 as "the only positive action that has promised any relief to education." Draughon to Members of the Senate Finance and Taxation Committee, July 16, 1959.

Bolt enclosed an editorial by Harry Ayers that appeared in the Anniston Star of July 15: "…it is enough to make the devil weep when rich state organizations like the State Chamber of Commerce, the Associated Industries of Alabama, and the Alabama Mining Institute are trying to defeat the school program." Ralph P. Bolt to Draughon, July 16, 1959.

A manufacturer of ornamental iron complained that by removing certain sales tax exemptions, House Bill 94 would be harmful to industry in Alabama. W.W. McTyeire to Draughon, July 17, 1959.

Senator Larry Dumas agreed that Alabama needed more funds for education, but considered House Bill 94 counterproductive. He disagreed with Draughon that this bill was the only hope for finding such support. Dumas to Draughon, July 20, 1959.

It had become increasingly evident that the possibility of reaching agreement on additional education taxes would be difficult. House Bill 94 was before the Senate, but opposition was increasing. Coyt Wilson to David Lyon, July 20, 1959.

W.E. Reid complained that in proposing the removal agricultural exemptions from sales tax, Auburn had forgotten who its friends were. Reid to Draughon, July 20, 1959.

"I am unable to understand your telegram about the sales tax because all education is being severely injured by the infalgrant [sic] disregard of the Sterne Committee’s report on educational needs in Alabama as a means of financing same. Will deem it a great favor if you will wire me collect and advise why you favor complete disregard for the report." Solon Dixon to Draughon, July 21, 1959.

"Stern report not adopted by Education Study Commission because it would not provide funds to meet needs determined by Commission which recommended about 37 million for education." Draughon to Dixon, July 21, 1959.

Draughon replied that Reid had been misinformed. House Bill 94 did not remove any of the farmer’s exemptions. He would continue to support 94 because it was the only bill brought forward in the special session that promised any aid to education. Draughon to Reid, July 21, 1959.

Mullins reported on the legislative situation regarding tax measures that would bring in approximately $23 million for education. A measure was before the House for final vote regarding an increase in the tobacco tax that would garner $6 million. That would bring the total to $28-30 million. No one knew where the other would come from, or if it would come at all. Mullins recommended continuing to press for the full amount. It would be better to try and fail than to quit. Administrative Council, Minutes, August 10, 1959.

Draughon wrote to Senator Alton L. Turner in Luverne regarding the latter’s apparent concern that Extension Service appropriations that passed the House earlier in the day had not been equalized with those for campus instruction. This was not the case. Also untrue were past rumors that Extension was not being treated fairly. Draughon urged Turner not to support the rumored last-minute effort to amend the bill. Draughon to Turner, August 14, 1959.

Turner replied that he had reviewed House Bill 1, done his own calculations, and saw that Draughon was correct. Previously, he had been concerned about the matter. Turner copied his letter to Senators Vaughan Hill Robison and Yetta Sanford. Turner to Draughon, August 15, 1959.

The bill that passed the House provided an increase for all divisions of the university; each of the major divisions would receive the same percentage of the total appropriation; the increase was below the initial request, but still represented a substantial improvement; it would make possible salary improvements, additional staff, and new facilities. Draughon to Neil O. Davis, August 17, 1959.

Apparently, the Auburn budget passed: "The very successful legislative program that has just been completed…" was due in large part to Joe Sarver’s efforts in organizing county committees. Charles F. Simmons to Joe Sarver, August 24, 1959.

The university’s budget had been prorated 10 percent. First priority would be given to maintaining current salary levels for all employees. Draughon to Faculty and Staff, March 25, 1960.

The Alabama Education Commission had completed its work in 1959. Recommendations included establishment of junior colleges and a Commission on Higher Education. Charles F. Zukoski served on the Higher Education Committee of the AEC. Zukoski to Draughon, April 4, 1960.

Draughon opposed the creation of new institutions of higher education until the state found ways to support the existing ones adequately. He would not oppose a Commission on Higher Education "with limited powers." Draughon to Zukoski, April 6, 1960.

Draughon wanted to start work on a budget for the 1961-63 biennium, which would be due to the State Budget Officer no later than February 1, 1961. The Special Education Trust Fund currently was not providing enough money to meet the appropriations made by the Special Session of the Legislature. Consequently, they were being prorated by 10 percent. Budget Planning Committee, Minutes, August 9, 1960.

.Joe Smith—a member of the legislature—reported that the outlook was not good, other than some sentiment to deal with some aspects of proration. Administrative Council, Minutes, January 16, 1961.

The state’s financial situation was "acute" and the second biennium promised to be "tough." Educational demands had grown even though appropriations made two years ago had been prorated. It might be necessary "to battle to keep current appropriations where they are." Administrative Council, Minutes, February 27, 1961.

The legislative teams that had canvassed the counties reported, among other things, on the reactions of the legislators who attended the meetings. Generally, they were "sympathetic to the needs of education, but a little doubtful of any chance for more money." Legislative Team Meetings, Summary Report, April 4-6, 1961.

Governor Patterson’s message to the legislature called for an education appropriation that would be 2 percent over the amount actually received (after proration) during the past year. If the legislature followed his recommendation, the 1961-62 appropriation would be 7 percent less than the amount actually appropriated (but not paid in full, due to proration for 1960-61. Draughon to Faculty and Staff, May 4, 1961.

Auburn hoped that Governor Patterson would "relax his position against new revenues for education." Furthermore, AU opposed the depletion of the Special Education Trust Fund by exempting additional items from the sales tax and adding new institutions—some of them private—to the list supported by the fund. Robert C. Anderson (Executive Vice President) to William Lang, July 19, 1961.

An Auburn alum urged the Executive VP to publicize their program better in north Alabama. It had become "a little bit obnoxious to the Auburn people to see the University’s publicity program in full operation." Alabama not only dealt with "the Huntsville situation," but with their program in general. Alvin A. Biggio to Anderson, July 20, 1961.

Regarding the Huntsville situation, Auburn would put itself in a bad light if it opposed an appropriation for that area simply because the money would go to the University of Alabama. Anderson acknowledged the need for Auburn to strengthen its position in northern Alabama. Anderson to Biggio, July 24, 1961.

The Acting Director of the Extension Service wrote to Senator Norman R. Crawford that some might draw the conclusion that a fight was developing between Auburn and Alabama over the Rural Resource Development Bill and the Huntsville Research Center Bill. Auburn was in no way opposing the Huntsville measure. AU policy was to work for their own appropriations, but not to oppose others’ requests. Fred R. Robertson to Crawford, July 31, 1961.

Draughon wrote to Senator John Sparkman regarding the proposed $3 million state bond issue to construct a research facility for the University of Alabama at Redstone Arsenal. President Rose of the University of Alabama had assured him that the facility would benefit Auburn as much as Alabama. But how could this be so if it were under the control of the University of Alabama? Auburn had done much work for NASA, but did they not now stand to lose that connection? If this facility was needed for research vital to the National Defense, why did the state of Alabama have to pay for it with a bond issue? Draughon sought Sparkman’s candid response to these questions. Draughon to Sparkman, August 4, 1961.

The House Ways and Means Committee had reported out an appropriations bill for the Special Education Trust Fund. The bill would appropriate exactly the amounts recommended by Governor Patterson to Auburn and other educational institutions. It also carried an additional $5 million appropriation, provided the funds became available. Some wanted to raise the conditional cap higher, but Auburn favored removing it entirely. Robert C. Anderson to Friends of Auburn, August 21, 1961.

Auburn’s legislative efforts during the past summer were disappointing, but not a total loss. The legislature did pass a conditional appropriation for education; killed most of the efforts that would have reduced the Special Education Trust Fund; funded a capital improvement for the Experiment Station; and provided $150,000 for the Rural Resource Development program. Anderson to Alvin Rainwater, September 26, 1961.

Local feedback regarding Governor Wallace’s educational proposals was positive, with the possible except of free textbooks for grades 1-12. Hoyt B. Price to Draughon, February 19, 1965.

Jeff Bennett of the University of Alabama had told Edwin M. Crawford—director of University Relations at AU—that there was a good chance of reducing the junior college appropriation and adding "our bill prorating all surplus on the basis of present appropriations." "Our best hope" might be "getting all surplus over $1 million prorated on the basis of current appropriations." This would mean "giving in to the junior colleges, but with the support of the governor" they would "get at least $2.5 million out of this session." Crawford predicted that the farm exemption bills would receive strong Senate opposition. Crawford to Draughon, July 6, 1965.

Draughon urged the chair of the Senate Education Committee to hold hearings if the Speaker’s Ban Bill was reported out of committee. Such a bill would be unnecessary if all institutions would ban the appearance of communists on campus, as Auburn already had done. Draughon to Neil Metcalf, August 3, 1965.

Auburn’s president-elect dictated a memorandum for the record to Draughon urging delay in the passage of the Speaker’s Ban Bill, which was modeled on a 1963 North Carolina measure. The latter had prevented a speaking engagement at the University of North Carolina by a State Department sanctioned Russian expert on virology. Harry M. Philpott to Draughon, August 4, 1965.

Parliamentary tactics by Senator Vaughon Hill Robison and seven others prevented consideration of the Speaker Ban Bill. If these eight hold together, the bill probably will not pass. Edwin M. Crawford to Draughon, August 16, 1965.

Draughon considered the Ban Bill unnecessary because "the full authority in all matters pertaining to Auburn University rests in the Board of Trustees—according to the Constitution of the State of Alabama." Draughon to James I. Smith, August 18, 1965.

Draughon congratulated Robison and the seven other senators for their "brilliant and effective opposition to the Speaker Ban Bill." Draughon to Neil Metcalf, August 31, 1965.

The public hearing of the Senate Education Committee on the Speaker Ban Bill, which took place on August 5, "was one of the longest and most emotional hearings held by a legislative committee in Alabama in a number of years." Crawford to Philpott, August 31, 1965.

Political Matters

In response to a request for support in a political campaign, Draughon wrote that "under the terms of a resolution of the Board of Trustees, were are prohibited from participating in a political campaign." Draughon to E.E. Nelson, March 13, 1950.

As the May 2 primary drew near, Draughon had heard rumors of partisan political activity on the part of some API personnel. He urged all to follow the policy of the board of trustees in this matter. Draughon to All Employees, April 28, 1950.

Draughon specifically reminded extension agents of the policy, which had been announced on June 14, 1949. The policy prohibited any action that might reflect on the institution. Draughon to County Agents, April 28, 1950.

Draughon wrote to the president of the University of Alabama regarding Geoffrey Birt’s column in the Sunday edition of the Montgomery Advertiser. He professed to have no knowledge of the source of Birt’s information. Auburn had agreed to host any candidate who wanted to speak on campus, but took no responsibility for anything other than providing space. With reference to Governor Persons and his helicopter, Draughon had no knowledge of the incident until after the campaign. Draughon to John M. Gallalee, October 16, 1950.

In response, Gallalee wrote "I am sure you know that I think Auburn and the University must work together and let no wedges be driven between them; if we don’t hang together we are sure to hang separately." Gallallee to Draughon, October 20, 1950.

With the campaign season drawing near, Draughon sent all employees a copy of the 1949 statement regarding political activity. It included a prohibition of partisan activity by API or any of its divisions, schools, or departments. Furthermore, it stated that no employee was obligated to support a particular candidate or cause urged by another employee. Draughon to All Employees, March 10, 1954.

The board had adopted two statements on political activity: November 21, 1947, and June 13, 1949. Draughon urged all employees to follow them. Draughon to All Employees, March 12, 1958.

Go to the Archives and Manuscripts Departments "Auburn University Presidents" homepage

Go to the History of Auburn University homepage

Go to the Archives and Manuscripts Department homepage