Page 1


v\\ IWW\\A W !TP__15ISItt OF DUVAL Protected this day Mesqu .te in The good p yQ , The undersigned, having and all the King s me the Sovereign Cou the gaping hales in a somewhat wilted d a very dry Moat. oval County bid oved the wilderness now entitled to enter val through any of vile Curtain. WWI\\ AAA `More Fun At Home’ Crown Prince Of Duval of Mexican heritage, stood apart to watch with immobile faces as the Republicans gathered. Word gJt around that all county employees, including school teachers, had been told they would lose their jobs if they were seen at the rally. The only local folk, who moved in close enough to expose the whites of their eyes, wore holstered pistols and badges. Five big-hatted Texas Rangers were conspicuous as they stood in a group, smoking and watching. A visitor drove by George Parr’s rambling adobe mansion and saw a police car poised in the driveway behind the thick, white wall, waiting. Word got around that Sheriff Vidal Garcia had prohibited the sale of beer in town during the rally. ALL OF THIS grated against the crowd’s sense of well-being and detracted from the fun. The main speaker, Jack Cox, was late getting to the platform. He circled the rally area to shake hands with the reluctant Duval countians, out there beyond the range of the lights. While waiting for the GOP gubernatorial candidate, master of ceremonies Homero Barrera, made the mistake \(in the opinion of some Archer Parr wasn’t on hand to greet them as he’d promised. A shout went up and Parr approached the platform from behind Barrera. This was the nephew of the notorious Duke of Duval, but his physical appearance disappointed most of the visitors. He is a slender man of about forty. He wore one of those expensive, shiny, silk suits. He was slightly gray at the temples; his lapels were narrow in the Ivy League style. He might have been a young Dallas banker. It was difficult to feel fear after he made his appearance. “It’s rather strange to be before a group of Republicans in Duval County,” Parr said into the microphone. “We don’t have many here . . . I hope your brief stay here is pleasant. As Harry Truman says, ‘Give ’em hell.’ ” A long boom of applause followed this. Parr waved and smiled, as if it were his rally, then stepped back into the crowd. Two husky guitarists played and sang Mexican songs. Lawrence Hooverwhose supporters startled some visitors with their HOOVER FOR CONGRESS signs introduced. He said, “We’re going to smoke John Connally out this time. When you are running against a Don Yarborough it’s easy to look like a conservative, but he’s running against Jack Cox, a real conservative, now.” Other local and district Republican candidates were introduced. Television cameramen and newspaper reporters milled around restlessly, finally cornering Parr to ask several ambiguous questions before giving up hope that the county judge would slip up and say something meaningful about the occasion. Chin Trembled WHAT PARR SAID to the newsmen included: “We fight politics hard here 365 days in the year . . . This is the first Republican primary in Duval since 1916 . . . There were 193 votes cast in the GOP county primary on May 5 . . . Yes, we’ve, been traditionally Democratic in Duval County.” He said there was no truth in reports that county officials had threatened to turn the courthouse lawn Sprinklers on any Republi cans who set foot on the courthouse square. Why had the Republicans been denied the use of the courthouse yard? Parr didn’t know; that was the mayor’s job. Did he think the Democrats would win in Duval County this year? “I would say there is a small chance they will,” Parr grinned. The county judge, who is opposedthis time by the very popular Dr. E. E. Dunlap \(who had to attend patients and missed the good fellow during his appearance among the invading Republicans. He did an effective job of it. But as he listened to questions from reporters his chin trembled. After Parr’s appearance on the platform, the rally loosened up considerably. The president of the Texas A&I Young Republicans, who sponsored a bus from Kingsville, was called to the platform. In a long letter released to the press the previous day, Judge Parr had written: “Why are they being sent? . . . Most are not qualified voters . . . Will they be employed as demonstrators and directed to conduct themselves as they did at Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and other places where they rioted?” The clean-cut young man who headed the A&I student delegation said he had never been to Fort Lauderdale and that he was a qualified voter. He pointed to where the 30 or 40 students stood with their Jack Cox signs and assured Judge Parr there wasn’t a rioter among them. Before Parr left the area \(he said he was going home to watch one hit upon the idea of having him sign their Duval County “Passports,” cardboard documents printed for this affair by the local Republicans. Once this was started Parr had to sign a hundred or so before he could get away. The passports declared: “The undersigned, having braved the wilderness and all the King’s men, is now entitled to enter the Sovereign County of Duval through any of the gaping holes in the Mesquite Curtain.” ‘Thumbs Up’ JACK COX began working his way through the crowd \(a Texas Ranger estimated it at 2,000; most newsmen there set it at about the picket signs bounced. From near the platform the scene looked like a full-scale political convention because the crowd spread three directions. A Duval County deputy sheriff caught the eye of a Cox campaign worker, winked secretly and gave a “thumbs-up” signal. After an introduction by Kellis Dibrell, who lost the GOP nomination for lieutenant governor to 0. W. Hays, the candidate mounted the platform amid yelping cheers and continuing applause. Instructor Sues NTSU DALLAS An English instructor who contends his contract for the coming school year was not renewed because of his desegregation activities has filed suit against North Texas State University in Denton. Jesse Ritter, the instructor, sought counsel from the American and Dallas Civil Liberties Unions. His complaint filed by lawyers Albert Levy, Herbert Landau, Marvin Manaker, and George Schatzki, alleges he was deprived of free speech and free assembly. The defendants are J. C. Matthews, NTSU president, and the board of regents. In December of last year, Rit-. ter’s complaint says, he was notified by his superiors that his contract for 1962-63 would not be renewed because of his “alleged activities of meeting and advising individuals for the purpose of advancing desegregation of the races in stores and theaters in the Denton area.” He was further warned that if his activities continued he would be fired immediately. The complaint argues that the school’s authorities refused to notify him in writing of the charges against him and that he was not allowed a hearing. The complaint, filed in U.S. District Court, seeks an injunction restraining the school from refusing to re-employ Ritter. An alternate injunction seeks a hearing which would include “written notice of the charges, adequate time to prepare and present \(Ritportunity to face and cross-examine his accusers.” Stockily muscular, he looked like a mature All-American boy. “This occasion is a dramatic one,” the candidate said. “It has a certain very special significance and it might well prove to be historic in the political annals of Texas. I have been told of various attempts at humor by Mr. Parr . . . But I do not consider it a humorous occasion. I don’t hear laughter from the lips of Jake Floyd. There are no chuckles from Sam Smithwick.” At the mention of Floyd and Smithwick listeners gasped in unisonespecially those standing just outside the range of the lights. Who Is Jake Floyd? PARR’S JOLLY GOOD FEL-LOW appearance was instantly nullified. Visitors whispered: “Who is Jake Floyd? Who is Sam Smithwick?” They were told that Floyd, 19-year-old son of a political enemy of George Parr, was shot to death in the driveway of his home a few years ago. Smithwick, a Parr deputy, was convicted of murdering Alice radio commentator Bill Mason, who often heckled Parr on the air, and was found hanged in his prison cell shortly before he was scheduled to turn state’s witness and tell who had hired him. Less than an hour laterten miles and a county awayvisiting Republicans occupied most of the tables in the restaurant at the Americana Motel in Alice. Someone asked if anyone was having a party. The answer was, no. Anybody going down to Mexico? No. No one, it seemed, was in a partying mood. Most of these Republicans had been personally involved in politics a very short time and none had been exposed before to certain realities of Texas politics. “I feel like I’ve been staring down the barrel of a loaded gun all day,” a woman said. “I’m tired.” Politics was more fun at home. the election, it was announced that a previously uncounted ballot box had suddenly turned up. This box \(Box 13 in Jim Wells gave LBJ an 87-vote state-wide margin over Coke Stevenson for the Senate chair. Some Texas politicians say such unique reports from George Parr country are never investigated because most state-wide candidates have dealt with, or attempted’ to deal with, the Duke of Duval at one time or another and do not want their own dealings revealed. Judge Parr, in his proclamation, refers to the fact that Jack Cox carried “infamous” Box 13 in 1960 when he ran for governor against Price Daniel. Republicans, however, are quick to point out that precinct redistricting and the growth of Alice since 1948 have taken the old Box 13 area out of the realm of the mystical and converted it into an area populated mainly by semi-skilled workers. They point out also that Parr’s influence in Jim Wells County has dwindled considerably in recent years, and that Don Yarborough carried Jim Wells box number 13 on June 2. A recent article in the Corpus Christi Caller-Times refers to Archer Parr, the present county judge, as “titular head of Duval County.” The Proclamation Judge Parr, as titular head of Duval affairs, issued the following proclamation in connection with the July 28 GOP rally in Duval County: To the Republican Party of Texas, greet ,ngs: By special proclamation, Saturday, July 28, 1962, has been officially designated as Republican Day in the Free State of Duval. The Mesquite Curtain will be lifted on that day and blanket passports granted to all Republicans so that they may enter and hear that one-time Democrat, Jack Cox, espouse the cause of his adopted minority political party. I am sure he will attempt to explain how he carried infamous Box 13 in Jim Wells County \(504 crat against Gov. Price Daniel in 1960, how he asked for George Parr’s vote in 1951 in the event he ever ran for a state-wide political office, how a majority of the write-in votes in the past Republican Party primary in Duval County were written by the same individual, and why the local Republican county chairman violated various provisions of the election code in not filing the election returns as required by law. No local officials \(except myincoming tourists arriving via their chartered, air-conditioned buses and chauffeur driven limousines. The courthouse will be closed as it is every Saturday and by custom the use of the courthouse grounds denied to any political party for a political rally. However, the street on the east side of the courthouse which is adjacent to the Jim Wells-Duval county-line, will be blocked off for one block from 5 o’clock to 9 o’clock in the evening for the rally site. c \(Tha h n e ge s d it e of the rally later was There you may listen to two defeated candidates, Jack Cox and Kellis Dibrell, both former Democrats and now turncoat Republicans, deliver their enlightening messages and attempt to explain the troubles of the local Republican Party, which explana tion will be easy, as they have only 192 members and one lawviolating county chairman. As we in Duval County are not too familiar with all the present day tactics of the Republican Party, but having been told how some of our citizens were killed on May 18, 1912, by Republicans because of politics, the local Dem