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Patricia Collins Butler Collection

Patricia Collins Butler Collection

Descriptive Summary

Title: Patricia Collins Butler Collection
Creator: Butler, Patrica Collins, 1907-2009
Inclusive Dates: 1938-2009
Bulk Dates: 1938-1940
Language(s): English
Extent: 1 box(es) (0.25 linear feet)
Collection Number: RBRL301PCB
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: The Patricia Collins Butler Collection includes documentation of the romance and engagement of Patricia Collins and Richard B. Russell, Jr., in 1938.

Collection Description

Biographical Note

Patricia (Pat) Collins Butler was born December 23, 1907, to Phillip and Mary Collins in Brooklyn, New York. Butler grew up in Atlanta and graduated from Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia, in 1928. She enrolled at Emory University School of Law – the only woman in a class of 30 – and finished second in her class in 1931.

After struggling to find a position with a local firm, Butler was hired to establish the antitrust library for the United States Department of Justice. She would go on to work for 16 attorneys general. In 1949, she joined the ranks of the first female lawyers to argue a case, Johnson v. Shaughnessy, before the U.S. Supreme Court. Although she took over the case in an emergency, Butler won.

During her time at the Office of the Attorney General, she became friends with Chief Justice Warren Burger. That friendship led to the founding of the Supreme Court Historical Society in 1974. Butler also was the founding secretary of the American Bar Association's section on administrative law and the founding editor of what is now the Federal Register. She was named a Distinguished Alumna by Emory Law in 1997 and awarded the Emory Medal, the highest honor for an alumnus, in 2000.

Butler died May 27, 2009, at her home in La Jolla, California. Married and widowed three times, Butler had no children.

Scope and Content

The Patricia Collins Butler Collection adds documentation to the romance and engagement of Patricia Collins and Richard B. Russell, Jr., in 1938. Highlights include Russell's handwritten letters and postcards to Miss Collins in the period 1938-1940. Reference is made to the engagement, Richard B. Russell, Sr.'s death, travel on troop transport ships from the East Coast via Panama Canal to Hawaii, impending war in Europe, and Army-Navy game tickets. The materials include correspondence (letter, postcard, and telegram), calling and gift cards, newspaper clippings, a photograph of Collins and Russell together, and other items from 1970 and 1990. Included is Butler's obituary from 2009.

Organization and Arrangement

The collection is arranged by format, then chronologically.

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Preferred citation

Patricia Collins Butler Collection, Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia Libraries, Athens, Georgia, 30602-1641.

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.

Conditions Governing Use

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding Aid prepared by Mat Darby, 2015.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Russell, Richard B. (Richard Brevard), 1861-1938.
Russell, Richard B. (Richard Brevard), 1897-1971

Related Collections in this Repository

Richard B. Russell, Jr. Collection

Richard B. Russell, Jr. Oral History Project

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

11-3Correspondence, 1938-1940
14Calling and gift cards, 1937-1940
15Photograph, circa 1938
16Clipping, note on Gilbert Fite query, 1970, 1990
17Butler obituary, 2009