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ACLU of Louisiana records

Identifier: LaRC-661

Scope and Contents

This collection contains records from the ACLU of Louisiana. These records include financial records, court case files, personal correspondence, pamphlets, clippings, case research, and newsletters. The ACLU of Louisiana was founded in 1956 as a state affiliate of the national ACLU.


  • 1954-2012
  • Other: Majority of material found within 1960-1980
  • Majority of material found within 1997-2010


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to the public. This collection may contain personally identifying information. Patrons are asked to neither record or reveal personally identifying information.

Conditions Governing Use

Physical rights are retained by the Louisiana Research Collection. Copyright is retained in accordance with U.S. copyright laws.

Biographical / Historical

The American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana (ACLULA) started in 1956, adopting the initial name of the Louisiana Civil Liberties Union (LCLU). The first president of the group was George Dreyfous. In the chapter's early years, the organization dealt with many issues related to segregation, including school integration, voting rights, and censorship of media. The group also struggled against public perceptions that the group had Communist sympathies. In addition, otherwise sympathetic individuals were reluctant to involve or be involved with the LCLU, because anything the group stood for would give that cause "the kiss of death" due to its unpopular reputation in the South.

In the 1960s, the ACLU of Louisiana (as it was by then known) continued to move forward with significant activity. Concerns included continuing involvement in civil rights issues, as well as monitoring Louisiana prisoner's rights, being a watch dog for civil rights infringements by the New Orleans Police Department. In May 1967, noted civil rights activist Oretha Castle Haley was elected to the board. Those involved with the ACLU often faced threats -- the KKK fire-bombed a Board member and a Director's home in the 1960s.

During the 1970s, the ACLULA expanded with chartered chapters elsewhere in the state, including Shreveport, Baton Rouge and Lafayette. Since the 1980s, the ACLULA continued to file lawsuits and monitor infringements of civil liberties around the state. More information is available at


94.00 Boxes

39 feet. Linear Feet

Language of Materials



This collection is organized alphabetically by folder title. The collection consists of 94 boxes and is 39 linear feet.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of ACLU of Louisiana. Date acquired: 01/05/1980.

Accruals and Additions

Future accruals anticipated.

Processing Information

Finding aid created between 2010-2011 by Jennifer Geiger. Additional information supplied by Eira Tansey in 2012. Revisions by Stephanie Jolissaint and Althea Topek.

ACLU of Louisiana records finding aid
In Progress
Original by Jennifer Geiger and Eira Tansey. Additions by Stephanie Jolissaint and Althea Topek.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Edition statement
This edition includes accruals to the ACLU of Louisiana records until 2010.

Repository Details

Part of the Tulane University Special Collections Repository

Jones Hall Room 202
6801 Freret Street
New Orleans 70118 US