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R. Chappelle Matthews Papers

R. Chappelle Matthews Papers

Descriptive Summary

Title: R. Chappelle Matthews Papers
Creator: Matthews, Robert Chappelle, 1908-1986
Inclusive Dates: 1951-1977
Language(s): English
Extent: 2 box(es) (1 linear foor)
Collection Number: RBRL171RCM
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: The Chappelle Matthews Papers span the dates 1951 to 1977, with the bulk of the papers representing Matthew's years service in the Georgia House of Representatives, 1949-1976.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Chappelle Matthews was born on November 1, 1908 in Athens, Georgia. A member of a four-generation Athens family, Matthews attended Athens public schools and graduated from the University of Georgia in 1933. After completion of his degree from the Southern Law School in 1934, he began practicing law in Athens.

Matthews was first elected as a Democrat to the Georgia House of Representatives in 1949 representing Clarke County. He served on the Rules and Judiciary, Agriculture, Game and Fish, Western and Atlantic Railroad, Legislative and Reapportionment committees as well as chair of the University System committee. Every bill Matthews personally sponsored passed on the floor of the house, including the 1951 constitutional amendment that required a 3 percent sales tax to support public education. From 1955 to 1976, Matthews faced no opposition for his seat in the Georgia House of Representatives. After twenty-seven years advocating higher education and welfare legislation, Matthews retired from public service in 1976. At the time of his retirement, Matthews was considered the "Dean" of the House - the representative with the longest service.

Although he was a member of several other committees, it was Matthews's devotion and contributions to higher education that earned him the titles among his legislative colleagues such as "Mr. University System" and "Mr. Higher Education" among his colleagues. The University of Georgia honored Matthews with the Outstanding Alumni Award in 1964 and the Distinguished Service award in 1970. Matthews died in 1986.

Scope and Content

The R. Chappelle Matthews Papers consist of newspaper clippings, event programs, speeches, awards, artifacts, and photographs from Matthews' service in the Georgia House of Representatives.

Organization and Arrangement

The collection is divided into three series: I. General, II. Photographs, and III. Artifacts.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

R. Chappelle Matthews Papers, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, GA, 30602-1641.

User Restrictions

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Copyright Information

Before material from collections at the Richard B. Russell Library may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part, in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property, and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain both sets of permissions. Persons wishing to quote from materials in the Russell Library collection should consult the Director. Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding aid prepared on: 2000.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Georgia -- Politics and government -- 1951-
Legislators -- Georgia -- Clarke County.
Matthews, Robert Chappelle, 1908-1986

Related Collections in this Repository

Hugh Logan Papers

Robert Argo Papers

Louise McBee Papers

Michael Thurmond Papers

George L. Smith II Papers

Paul Broun, Sr. Papers

George Busbee Papers

S. Ernest Vandiver, Jr. Papers

Carl E. Sanders Papers

Zell Miller Papers

Herman E. Talmadge Collection

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing


I. General

11Newspaper Clippings, Invitations, and Miscellaneous Correspondence, (1951-1977)
12Scrapbook Contents: Newspaper Clippings, Events Programs, and Resolutions of Recognition, (1962-1973)
13Newspaper Clippings, (1973-1974)
14Campaign Speech "To the Voters of Clarke County", 1948
15UGA Alumni Day, 1964
16Miscellaneous Awards / Resolutions of Recognition
17Members-Committees-Rules of the House of Representatives, (1973-1974)
18Matthews' Passport
19Obituary and Biographical Information
1101995 Dedication of the R. Chappelle Matthews Public Service Complex at UGA

II. Photographs

7 folder(s)
This series include pictures of Matthews at the State House. Some notable individuals in the photographs include Paul Broun, George Busbee, Ernest Vandiver, Jimmy Carter, George Smith II, and Zell Miller.
111Personal Photos of Matthews (folder 1 of 3)
112Personal Photos of Matthews (folder 2 of 3)
113Personal Photos of Matthews (folder 3 of 3)
114Miscellaneous B/W Photos of Matthews at Georgia State House
115Photographs of Matthews at Georgia State House (at podium with pages and other politicians (folder 1 of 2)
116Photos of Matthews at Georgia State House (Misc.) (folder 2 of 2)
117Photos of Sarah Stay (sister of Matthews) at State House
118Matthews family

III. Artifacts

2Campaign stickers, ID tags, pocket knife, and gavel