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Marvin Griffin Papers

Marvin Griffin Papers

Descriptive Summary

Title: Marvin Griffin Papers
Creator: Griffin, Marvin, 1907-1982
Inclusive Dates: 1946-1982
Bulk Dates: 1954-1962
Language(s): English
Extent: 3 box(es) (2.0 linear feet and 3 sound recordings)
Collection Number: RBRL375
Repository: Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies
Abstract: Marvin Griffin (1907-1982) served as Lieutenant Governor and Governor of the State of Georgia (1948-1955; 1955-1959). His papers include speeches, campaign files, clippings, correspondence, photographs, and audiovisual materials.

Collection Description

Historical Note

Samuel Marvin Griffin was born September 4, 1907 in Bainbridge, Decatur County, Georgia. After graduating from Bainbridge High School in 1925, Griffin went on to receive his A.B. degree in political science and history from The Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina, in 1929. In 1931, Griffin married the former Mary Elizabeth Smith, and together they had two children, Patricia Ann and Samuel Marvin, Jr. Beginning in 1933, Griffin was the editor and publisher of the The Post-Searchlight, a newspaper based in Bainbridge.

Griffin represented Decatur County in the Georgia General Assembly (1935-1936). Later, he served in the administration of Governor E. D. Rivers, eventually becoming executive secretary. Griffin was commissioned as a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army during World War II, later rising to the rank of brigadier general. In 1944, he was apponted Adjutant General of the Georgia National Guard and served until 1947.

Griffin was elected as Lieutenant Governor in 1948, serving under Governor Herman Talmadge.

In 1954, Griffin succesfully ran for governor and served until 1959. During his administration, Griffin increased the state income tax and funding forr education, particularly teacher salaries, and the Rural Roads Authority succeeded in paving nearly 12,000 miles of rural roads throughout Georgia. Having run on a segrationist platform, he ensured that no Georgia schools were integrated during his tenure despite the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling declaring segration unconstitutional. Accusations of corruption dogged his administration with several members being convicted on various charges.

Griffin ran for governor again in 1962, losing to Carl Sanders in the Democratic primary. In 1968, Griffin briefly served as a vice-presidential nominee alongside presidential candidate George Wallace.

Griffin's post-political life included involvement in the real estate business and his efforts in founding Bainbridge College (1970).

Griffin died in Bainbridge, Georgia, on June 13, 1982.

Source: Buchanan, Scott E. "Marvin Griffin (1907-1982)." New Georgia Encyclopedia. 20 August 2013. Web. 20 August 2015.

Scope and Content

The Marvin Griffin Papers document Griffin's campaigns for lieutenant governor and governor of Georgia and, to a lesser extent, his life outside of politics. The papers include speech and campaign files, clippings, correspondence, photographs, and audiovisual materials. Of note are his speeches delivered throughout his political career, many of which are annotated and revised, as well as records related to accusations of corruption during his tenure as governor.

Organization and Arrangement

The papers are arranged primarily in chronological order.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Reference copies of the audiovisual recordings are available upon request. Research requests will be filled as soon as possible and will be dependent upon the condition of the recordings.

Preferred citation

Marvin Griffin Papers, 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.

User Restrictions

Library acts as "fair use" reproduction agent.

Finding Aid Publication

Finding Aid prepared by Mat Darby, 2015.

Related Materials and Subjects

Subject Terms

Audiovisual materials
Georgia -- Governors.
Griffin, Marvin, 1907-1982
Junior colleges.
Political campaigns -- Georgia.
Roads -- Georgia.
Talmadge, Herman E. (Herman Eugene), 1913-2002

Related Collections in this Repository

Reflections on Georgia Politics Oral History Collection, ROGP 017 Sam Griffin on Marvin Griffin

Herman E. Talmadge Collection, Subgroup B: Georgia Gubernatorial Papers

Related Collections in Other Repositories

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing

11[Speeches], 1946-1956
12-3[Speeches], 1957
14-7[Speeches], 1958
18[Speeches], 1959,1961
19-10[Speeches], 1962
111[Speeches], undated
3[Speeches: bound volumes], 1954-1962
112[Lieutenant Governor Campaign], 1948, 1950
113[Campaign File], 1954-1962
114[Campaign Issues], 1954-1962
115[County File], 1956-1962
116-17[County Supporters Lists], 1954-1962
118[Clippings], 1962
119[Photographs: Campaign Rally], 1962
120[Documents related to State of Georgia fraud case], 1956-1960
121Shaw, Lawton - Supervisor of Purchases, 1956-1957
122Georgia Highway Financial Outlook, 1957
123Budget File, 1958
124Rural Roads Statistics, 1958
125[Rural Roads Authority], 1958
126[Personal Correspondence], 1953
127[Columns by Griffin], 1962
128[Junior College Report], 1964
21[Junior College Survey], 1967
22[The Decatur County Sesquicentennial Committee, Incorporated], 1973
23[Biographical Information], 1950-1960
24[Obituary], 1982 June 16
UC RBRL/375/RR0001Address to Colquitt County Citizens' Councils at Lake View Chapel by the Honorable Marvin Griffin, former Governor of Georgia, 1960 June 14 ( 1 sound_recording(s) )
UC RBRL/375/RR0002Governor Marvin Griffin's Address to Chattanooga Kiwanis Club, 1961 November 28 ( 1 sound_recording(s) )
UC RBRL/375/RR0003Marvin Griffin Campaign Song, circa 1962 ( 1 sound_recording(s) )