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Georgia History Timeline / Chronology 1961
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January 6, 1961 Macon judge William Bootle instructs the University of Georgia to admit Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes to the University, finding that they had been excluded from admission simply because they were black
  Donald L. Hollowell
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  The Road to Integration
January 7, 1961 After meeting with attorney Griffin Bell and others, segregationist governor Earnest Vandiver moves to stay Bootle's order to desegregate the University of Georgia
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
January 9, 1961 Bootle stays his ruling forcing the University of Georgia to desegregate. Bootle's stay is ruled "improvidently granted" by an Atlanta judge. Vernon Jordan is told to escort Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes to UGA to register for class. Georgia Governor Earnest Vandiver, who is required by law to close integrated schools does so in a way that UGA can keep operating at least for a few days: He cuts off state funding.
  Donald L. Hollowell
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
  The Road to Integration
January 10, 1961 Judge W. A. Bootle issues a temporary injunction preventing Georgia governor Earnest Vandiver from cutting off funds to the University of Georgia to prevent black Americans from attending class.
  Donald L. Hollowell
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
January 10, 1961 University of Georgia quarterback Fran Tarkenton, picked by the Minnesota Vikings in the third round of the draft, announces he has signed a contract with the expansion team
January 11, 1961 Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes attend their first classes at UGA. Following a nighttime basketball game, a rowdy group surrounds Hunter's dorm and is broken up by Athens police. Hunter and Holmes are suspended "for their own protection."
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  Donald L. Hollowell
  The Road to Integration
January 11, 1961 Racists riot in front of Myers Hall, where Charlayne Hunter had been living, prompting University of Georgia officials to suspend Hunter and Hamilton Holmes, another black student, for their "own safety."
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
January 12, 1961 Judge Bootle orders UGA to readmit Charlayne Hunter and Hamilton Holmes and charges Governor Ernest Vandiver with the responsibility of protecting them
  Donald L. Hollowell
  The Road to Integration
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
January 12, 1961 Judge W. A. Bootle strikes down a state law designed to cut off funding if the University of Georgia becomes integrated.
  Donald L. Hollowell
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
January 16, 1961 Emotions by Brenda Lee peaks at #7
  Brenda Lee
January 19, 1961 In an attempt to deal with federal pressure to integrate schools, Gov. Earnest Vandiver proposes an amendment to the Georgia constitution that ends all laws designed to maintain segregated schools. In order to have it pass the overwhelmingly pro-segregation legislature, he includes a local option to close schools or integrate. This date is often noted as January 18.
  The Road to Integration
  Ernest Vandiver, Jr.
January 21, 1961 Dean Rusk becomes Secretary of State under John F. Kennedy
  Dean Rusk
February 1, 1961 Sprite, a lemon-lime competitor of 7-Up, is introduced by Coca-Cola
  Coca-Cola
February 25, 1961 The Chattahoochee River rises to 28 feet at West Point, one foot below the historic record set in 1929
March 23, 1961 Donald Eugene McGregor is awarded the Young American Medal for Bravery by President Kennedy. Later in the day he receives the Carnegie Hero Medal from former U. S. Congresswoman Iris Blitch from Georgia.
  Donald Eugene McGregor
March 29, 1961 The 23th Amendment to the Constitution, Presidential vote for Washington D. C., becomes law. Georgia does not ratify.
  Georgia, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the United States Constitution
March 31, 1961 F3 tornado strikes Dooly County, killing 1 and injuring 14. More than 2.5 million dollars in damage. Tornadoes also strike Schley, Houstoun, Pulaski, Bleckley, Laurens, Worth and Tattnall counties.
  Tattnall County, Georgia
  Laurens County, Georgia
  Houston County, Georgia
  Schley County, Georgia
  Dooly County, Georgia
  Bleckly County, Georgia
  Worth County, Georgia
  Pulaski County, Georgia
  Georgia Tornadoes
April 2, 1961 Powder Springs added to the Metro Atlanta telephone calling area
April 2, 1961 Alpharetta added to the Metro Atlanta telephone calling area
April 3, 1961 You Can Depend on Me by Brenda Lee peaks at #6
  Brenda Lee
April 10, 1961 South Africa's Gary Player wins at Augusta National. He becomes the first foreign golfer to wear the green jacket.
April 12, 1961 Textile magnate Cason J. Callaway, who founded Callaway Gardens, dies
  Cason J. Callaway
April 13, 1961 Judy Garland, appearing at the Atlanta Municipal Auditorium, sings Over the Rainbow as her first encore
May 6, 1961 Attorney General Robert Kennedy speaks at Law Day, University of Georgia Law School, Athens
  University of Georgia, Athens (UGA)
June 3, 1961 Secretary of State Dean Rusk accompanies President John F. Kennedy for talks with Soviet Premiere Nikita Khrushchev in Vienna. At this meeting Khrushchev demands the Berlin crisis be resolved by December. Kennedy responds "It will be a cold winter." This is regarded as one of the earliest tests of Kennedy's resolve.
  Dean Rusk
June 6, 1961 Art Gillham dies of a heart attack, Atlanta, Georgia
  Art Gillham
June 26, 1961 Dum Dum peaks at #4
  Brenda Lee
July 17, 1961 Ty Cobb dies from complications of diabetes and cancer.
  Ty Cobb
July 30, 1961 Actor Laurence Fishburne born, Augusta, Georgia
  Laurence Fishborne
August 30, 1961 Nine days after suffering a debilitating stroke, John Wesley Dobbs passes away
September 15, 1961 W. W. Law is fired from his job as a Savannah postal worker after the election of G. Elliot Hagan of Sylvania, (Screven County) GA. who made it a campaign promise to have the NAACP leader fired from his job as a postal worker.
  City of Savannah, Georgia
  The Road to Integration
  Screven County, Georgia
October 9, 1961 Hit the Road Jack by Ray Charles reaches Number 1, while Brenda Lee's Fool #1 peaks at #3
  Brenda Lee
  Ray Charles
November 2, 1961 Temperature in Atlanta reaches 84 degrees, the warmest ever in November
December 10, 1961 Charles Sherrod and 7 members of the Southern Negro Christian Conference take the Central Georgia Railroad Atlanta to Albany to test the Interstate Commerce Commissions ruling desegregating all bus and train traffic. The test drew a crowd in Albany, which was dispersed under the order of Police Chief Laurie Pritchett.
December 13, 1961 Slayter King is arrested on the steps of City Hall during a prayer meeting
December 14, 1961 26 black activists enter the Trailways bus terminal in Albany, Georgia. 16 buy tickets to Tallahassee, Florida and sat in the waiting room. 10, who had not bought tickets, attempted a sit-in at the lunch counter. The 10 are refused service by a white waitress but are served coffee by a black cook. After arresting the protesters police return them to the bus terminal, where the lunch counter and bathrooms had been "closed for cleaning."
December 15, 1961 Going against some of his Southern Christian Leadership Conference advisers, Martin Luther King accepts an invitation to Albany, Georgia and speaks at a rally in support of activists that had be arrested the previous day
December 16, 1961 Martin Luther King is arrested while leading 250 activists to city hall in Albany, Georgia. He did not have a parade permit.
  Martin Luther King
  Albany, Georgia
December 28, 1961 Edith Bolling Wilson dies, Washington, D. C.
  Woodrow Wilson
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