Series 211

Governor (1949-1957 : Lee)


Correspondence, 1949-1956.

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Schedule Description

This series includes both incoming and outgoing correspondence retained by Governor Lee's office, documenting the administration of state government, as well as Lee's views and policies. Interspersed in the series are a variety of other documents including reports, minutes, newspaper clippings, publications, and a few photographs. This series contains material relating to the administration of state government, including official correspondence with the State Legislature, as well as correspondence with Utah citizens, and with people outside of Utah who admired Lee for his stand on various national issues.

Scope and Content

This series includes both incoming and outgoing correspondence retained by Governor Lee's office.This correspondence documents Lee's communication regarding both state and national issues, as well as his views and policies. Interspersed in the series are a variety of other documents including reports, minutes, newspaper clippings, publications, and a few photographs. In most cases these documents accompanied letters to the Governor's office or were sent to the Governor for informational purposes and not produced by the Governor's office. This series contains considerable correspondence relating to the administration of various State agencies. It includes official correspondence with the State Legislature, as well as more general correspondence regarding pending legislation. Correspondents include members of Utah's Congressional Delegation, as well as Federal officials and other state governors. The series includes numerous letters from Utah citizens, especially those who were appealing to Governor Lee regarding an individual in a state institution such as the State Mental Hospital, or an individual receiving aid through the State Department of Welfare. Governor Lee also received countless letters and telegrams came from people outside of Utah who admired his stand on various national issues.
In addition to a variety of state legislation, the issues documented in this series include the construction of state highways and planning for an interstate freeway system through Utah, the Korean War and involvement of the Utah National Guard in the conflict, the debate over state control of liquor, the administration of a civil defense program, the development of water resources (especially the Colorado River), and education (including the proposed transfer of state junior colleges to the LDS Church). The series includes one folder of material relating to the Short Creek polygamy raids. Materials in the series provide valuable documentation of Lee's view on a number of national issues and the national prominence he gained from his outspoken stance on those issues. He became particularly noted for his opposition to Communism, the United Nations, the federal income tax, and the federal foreign aid program. He gained notoriety for his refusal to celebrate United Nations Day in Utah and for his much-publicized refusal to pay federal income taxes.

Notes

This series is arranged roughly alphabetically by topic, department name, or name of correspondent, thereunder roughly chronologically by year or multiple year grouping. This arrangement is documented by the microfilm copy made in 1979 and presumably represents the order in which the records were received from the Governor's office. Despite numerous inconsitencies in arrangement of materials in the series, the order found in the 1979 filming has been maintained as the best approximation of the original order of the series.

This series was microfilmed in 1979 and the hard copy kept because of the intrinsic value of the papers. It was processed by Alan Barnett in January 2004 and scheduled in accordance with the Utah State Agency General Retention Schedule.

The structure of the original filing system used in the Governor Lee's office is evident in the series, but many folders are now out of the order originally intended. The system and the actual filing were not always consistent and some documents are clearly misfiled. Researchers will find that documents in this series may be filed under one heading, but may relate to other subjects as well. Some topics may be covered under multiple headings. For example, correspondence regarding specific welfare cases may be found under the heading "Welfare Cases" as well as under the heading "Welfare Department". Letters about a particular issue may be found under the name of the issue, under the state department responsible for handling the issue, or under the name of the correspondent. Because the series is not in the strict arrangement intended by the filing system and because the system and filing practice were not always consistent, researchers will want to approach their search broadly, scanning

the entire container list and looking under any and all headings that could relate to the research subject.