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Interview with Earl T. Leonard, Jr., February 15, 1971

Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies, University of Georgia
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00:00:00 - Becoming Russell's press secretary

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Partial Transcript: This is Hugh Cates, February 15th, 1971.

Keywords: Marshall Plan; Russell Appreciation Day; UGA; University of Georgia; the Red and Black newspaper

00:06:27 - Russell's response to the Cuban Missile Crisis / Russell's relationship with Presidents Roosevelt, Truman, Eisenhower, Kennedy, and Johnson

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Partial Transcript: I believed you mentioned the year 1961, and you were up there '61 through what, '63?

Keywords: Fidel Castro; Kennedy Administration; Lady Bird Johnson; New Deal; Soviet Union; U.S foreign policy; communism; national defense; social programs

00:16:46 - Russell's areas of expertise

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Partial Transcript: I've always said this about Senator Russell, he possessed the finest mind of any man I ever met.

Keywords: Civil War; French Revolution; Georgia agriculture; Governor Eugene Talmadge; Senate Appropriations Committee; Senate rules; War Between the States; national defense; political science

00:23:18 - Responsibilities as Russell's press secretary

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Partial Transcript: Earl, would you mind describing a typical day as a press aide to Senator Russell?

Keywords: Atlanta Constitution; Atlanta Journal; Chattahoochee River; Georgia agriculture; Senate Floor; presidential election of 1952

00:33:52 - Russell's appearances on national programs

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Partial Transcript: Here's an illustration of just how much the Russell name--to have him on a national program--meant.

Keywords: "Meet the Press"; "Youth Wants to Know"; Aubrey Morris; CBS; Channel 8; Larry Spivak; Roger Mudd; Ruth Hagy; Senator Lister Hill; UGA; UGA WGTV; University of Georgia; WSB

00:41:48 - Russell's response to the assassination of President Kennedy

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Partial Transcript: Earl, can you tell me how Senator Russell reacted to the assassination of President Kennedy?

Keywords: 1964 Civil Rights bill; Dallas, TX; JFK; Kennedy Administration; LBJ; President Lyndon B. Johnson; Robert "Bobby" Kennedy; Senate Floor

00:50:02 - Russell's debate strategies and philosophies

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Partial Transcript: Can you think of any other incidents while you were up there--you mentioned the Cuban crisis and the assassination of President Kennedy, any other such crises of those magnitudes?

Keywords: Johnson Administration; Kennedy Administration; MacArthur hearings; Nuclear Test Ban Treaty; Senate Rule 22; Senate cloture; Senate rules; Soviet Russia; Soviet Union; WW2; WWII; World War 2; World War II; communism; filibusters

01:02:00 - Russell's notable personality traits

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Partial Transcript: I guess lobbying is synonymous with Washington.

Keywords: Chrysler; Coca-Cola Company; GA; Georgia; Georgia peanuts; Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey; national defense

01:11:30 - Russell's romantic life / Possible causes of Russell's emphysema

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Partial Transcript: You mentioned the lady friend. Could you tell me the name of this lady?

Keywords: GA; Georgia; Ina Russell Stacy; Savannah River; Senate rules; bachelor; navigable waterways; pollution

01:20:30 - Russell's view on the United Nations / Relationship with Russell after leaving his employ

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Partial Transcript: Let me ask you this. What did he think about the United Nations?

Keywords: "view of Potomac fever"; American nationalism; Coca-Cola Company; Georgia; UN; Washington, D.C.; Winder, GA

01:29:10 - Final recollections and thoughts on Russell

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Partial Transcript: Earl, would you mind stating your salary while you worked for the Senator?

Keywords: GA; Georgia; National Press Club; Senate Floor; nationalism; patriotism