The Rhetoric of "Race Relations"

These exhibits relate to "race relations" in Atlanta during the tenure of Mayor Ivan Allen (1962-1970). Each exhibit acts as kind of case study in various issues in the urban history of Atlanta. The documents in these exhibits address issues such as civil rights, discrimination and racism, housing policy, police brutality, the civic representation of communities of color, and momentus events of the Civil Rights era in Atlanta such as the Summerhill riots and the funeral of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Notable documents include a letter from a Grand Dragon of the Ku Klux Klan calling for the abolishment of the Community Relations Commission (CRC) and correspondence sent to the Mayor's office following the arrest of Stokely Carmichael, chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Commmittee (SNCC), during the Summerhill riots of September 1966.

The exhibit "The Community Relations Commission" is a set of documents from 1966-67 related to the CRC's role as an increasingly important civic agency in understanding and communicating the concerns and crises of Atlanta's communities of color to the Mayor's office.

The exhibit "Adminstrative Response to Assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr." contains a 34-page folder of documents related mostly to the aftermath of King's murder in Memphis, Tennessee and plans for his funeral in Atlanta. This folder has been presented as a single exhibit to showcase the range of ephemeral and momentus documents and communications that accumulate "behind the scenes" of a major American historical event such as King's death and funeral.