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Inventory of the Edwin Meese papers, 1941-1991
91005  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Accruals
  • Related Materials
  • Biographical Note
  • Arrangement Statement
  • Index to Major Groups
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Title: Edwin Meese papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1941-1991
    Collection Number: 91005
    Contributing Institution: Hoover Institution Archives
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 772 manuscript boxes, 2 oversize boxes, 1 envelope, 5 sound cassettes, 2 motion picture film reels (325.0 linear feet)
    Abstract: Speeches, correspondence, memoranda, reports, schedules, press releases, legal documents, printed matter, photographs, and sound recordings related to California politics and administration of the California state government during the governorship of Ronald Reagan; and to American domestic policy, Republican Party politics, and federal administration of justice during the presidency of Ronald Reagan.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Creator: Meese, Edwin.

    Access

    The collection is open for research.
    Use copies of some sound recordings in this collection are available for immediate access. To listen to other sound recordings or to view videos or films during your visit, please contact the Archives at least two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear. Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Edwin Meese papers, [Box number], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Materials were acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1991, with increments received in subsequent years.

    Accruals

    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/ . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Related Materials

    Ronald Reagan subject collection, Hoover Institution Archives
    Citizens for Reagan records, Hoover Institution Archives
    Governor and the Students videotape series, Hoover Institution Archives
    Lee Edwards papers, Hoover Institution Archives

    Biographical Note

    1931 December 2 Born, Oakland, California
    1954-1955 Served in the United States Army
    1953 A.B. in public administration, Yale University
    1958 J.D., University of California, Berkeley
      Married Ursula Herrick
    1959-1967 Deputy district attorney, Alameda County, California
    1967-1968 Legal affairs secretary (previously called secretary on clemency and extradition) to Governor Reagan
    1969-1974 Executive assistant, chief of staff to Governor Reagan, Sacramento, California
    1975-1976 Vice president, administration, Rohr Industries, Chula Vista, California
    1976-1980 Attorney at law
    1977-1978 Director, Center for Criminal Justice Policy and Management, University of California, San Diego
    1977-1981 Professor of law, University of California, San Diego
    1980 Chief of staff and senior issues advisor, Ronald Reagan Presidential Campaign
    1981-1985 Counselor to President Reagan, Washington, D.C.
      Member of President Reagan's Cabinet
      Member of the National Security Council
    1983 Recipient, Distinguished Public Service Award
    1985 February-1988 August U.S. attorney general, Washington, D.C.
    1988- Distinguished visiting fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University, California
      Ronald Reagan Chair in Public Policy, The Heritage Foundation
    1992 Author, With Reagan: The Inside Story
    1996 President, Council for National Policy
    1996-2004 Member, Board of Visitors, George Mason University
    1997 Author, Making America Safer
    2001-2013 Chairman, Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, Heritage Foundation
    2004 Author, Leadership, Ethics and Policing
    2006 Member, Iraq Study Group
    2008 Named honorary Reagan fellow of Eureka College, Illinois
    2012 Recipient, Bradley Prize

    Arrangement Statement

    The collection was acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1991, and this initial accession, boxes 1-127, was arranged into seven groups: Biographical File, Speeches and Writings, White House Office File, Department of Justice Office File, Subject and Historical File, Sound Recordings, and Photographs.
    The majority of the collection was received as an increment to this original accession. The incremental materials, boxes 128-774, have not been arranged, and the original order and titles have been retained. The materials are divided into two major groups based on Meese's service to Ronald Reagan during Reagan's terms as governor of California and president of the United States. The Index to Major Groups can serve as a guide to the incremental materials in the collection.

    Index to Major Groups

    Gubernatorial Administration of Ronald Reagan File, 1941-1976.
    Contains correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, and court documents related to Meese's role during Ronald Reagan's terms as governor of California. Boxes 128-554, 772-773, film shelf.
    Agriculture and Services Agency
    Boxes 349-353, 364-367
    Appointments to government positions
    Boxes 481-487
    Budget
    Boxes 312-335
    Business and Transportation Agency
    Boxes 370-378
    California Council on Criminal Justice (CCCJ)
    Boxes 160-170
    Clippings
    Boxes 456-480
    Community and minority relations
    Boxes 191-193
    Conference file
    Boxes 288-300
    Correspondence and memoranda
    Boxes 144-149, 154-155, 501-505, 529
    Department of Corrections
    Boxes 390-395
    Education
    Boxes 193-201, 487-494
    Emergencies and disaster planning
    Boxes 176-190
    Energy
    Boxes 440-446
    Environment
    Boxes 424-439
    Health and Welfare Agency
    Boxes 378-387, 552
    Intelligence
    Boxes 494-497
    Intergovernmental management
    Boxes 206-217, 247-251, 300-311
    Legal affairs, legislation, and crime
    Boxes 217-240, 264-271
    Military
    Boxes 240-247, 259
    Office of Economic Opportunity
    Boxes 395-408
    Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act
    Boxes 170-174
    Photographs
    Box 771
    Schedules of Reagan and Meese
    Boxes 255-261, 509-511
    Sound recordings
    Box 773
    Speeches and speaking engagements of Meese
    Boxes 511-515
    Speeches of Ronald Reagan
    Boxes 280-286
    State employees
    Boxes 357-364
    Student radicalism, activism, and unrest
    Boxes 230-236, 488-490
    Tax reform
    Boxes 338-348
    Water
    Boxes 447-449
    Welfare
    Boxes 409-418
    Presidential Administration of Ronald Reagan File, 1975-1991.
    Contains correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, and court documents related to Meese's role during Ronald Reagan's presidency, including Meese's service as attorney general from 1985 to 1988. Boxes 554-771, 774.
    Alphabetical file
    Boxes 563-566, 608-627, 644-658, 693-701, 736-769
    Chronological file
    Boxes 627-629
    Clippings on Iran
    Boxes 710-716
    Correspondence
    Boxes 602, 690-692, 708
    Drug prevention
    Boxes 585-596
    Iran-Contra Affair
    Boxes 566-581
    Republican National Committee
    Boxes 686-689
    Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation
    Boxes 729-736
    Schedules of Reagan and Meese
    Boxes 554-556, 559-561, 582-584, 599-600, 603-608
    Speeches and travel file
    Boxes 706-708, 653-658

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Edwin Meese papers document Meese's role in the gubernatorial and presidential administrations of Ronald Reagan. The collection contains speeches, correspondence, memoranda, reports, schedules, press releases, legal documents, printed matter, photographs, and sound recordings related to California politics and administration of the California state government during the governorship of Ronald Reagan; and to American domestic policy, Republican Party politics, and federal administration of justice during the presidency of Ronald Reagan.
    Meese began his work for Ronald Reagan during Reagan's two terms as governor of California. In his book With Reagan, Meese notes that he was recommended to the governor based on his experience with law enforcement. From 1967 to 1968, Meese served as legal affairs secretary, tasked with resolving issues of extraditions, prisons, and capital punishment, as well as acting as a liaison to legal, judicial, and law enforcement departments. From 1969 to 1974, Meese was executive assistant and chief of staff, directing the governor's executive office and serving on the cabinet. In this role, Meese also had responsibilities concerning the National Guard, the Office of Emergency Services, and the Office of Criminal Justice Planning. The Gubernatorial Administration of Ronald Reagan File documents Meese's work during this period through correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, speeches, and court documents.
    During Reagan's campaign for the presidency in 1980, Meese served as chief of staff and senior issues advisor. In order to devote more time to the campaign, Meese spent less time teaching as a professor of law at UC San Diego and gave up his duties managing the Center for Criminal Justice Policy and Management. After Reagan was elected, Meese served as a counselor to the president and as a member of his cabinet.
    Boxes 566 to 582 document the Iran-Contra Affair, a scandal involving the sale of arms to Iran in exchange for Iran's help in releasing American hostages. In November 1986, after news of the scandal became public, Meese announced that some of the money gained from selling arms to Iran had been used to fund the Contras in Nicaragua. The collection includes clippings, correspondence, memoranda, testimony of Meese and others, phone logs, and chronologies related to the Iran-Contra Affair.
    From February 1985 to August 1988, Edwin Meese held the position of attorney general of the United States. In this role, Meese influenced policy initiatives concerning drug abuse, civil rights, and criminal procedure, in addition to creating a national marijuana eradication program. His accomplishments included prevention and control of crime, improvement of the criminal justice system, protection of civil rights, promotion of economic growth, improvement of the legal system, government financial integrity, and the preservation of constitutional values. The Presidential Administration of Ronald Reagan File documents Meese's work during Ronald Reagan's presidency from 1981 to 1988, including his efforts as the 75th attorney general of the United States.
    As required by law, security-classified materials have been removed from the collection until they can be declassified by government officials.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Reagan, Ronald.
    Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- )
    United States. Dept. of Justice.
    Audiotapes.
    California--Politics and government--1951-
    Justice, Administration of--United States.
    United States--Politics and government--1981-1989.