Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Frank Hare, July 9, 1977

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:04 - Personal relationship with Chandler

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Partial Transcript: This is professor Charles P. Roland of the University of Kentucky History Department.

Segment Synopsis: Hare describes his personal relationship with Chandler. He has known Chandler since Hare was a child and was fraternity brothers with his oldest son. He has known him intimately since around 1967. He got to know Chandler when Chandler's younger son was running for Congress. He admires Chandler because he is a non-drinker, a non-smoker, and very intelligent and successful. He describes their traveling relationship, including specific places they have been together such as California and New York for baseball related activities, and specific people they have talked to, such as Richard Nixon and Bob Hope.

Keywords: Dan Chandler; Golf; Traveling; Travels

Subjects: Baseball; Friendship; Kentucky--Politics and government; Politicians--Kentucky; Politics, Practical

00:11:10 - "Colorful" incidents with Chandler

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Partial Transcript: It goes without saying, uh, Mr. Hare, that he is one of the most colorful figures of, uh, let's say, uh, of modern American life.

Segment Synopsis: Hare describes some "colorful" incidents involving Chandler. The first story is about an incident with Leo Durocher in San Francisco where the interaction was cordial but a writer from a newspaper wrote that Durocher said he would have hit Chandler if other people hadn't been there. He mentions talking to Richard Nixon on the phone as well as meeting Henry Kissinger at a baseball game and having dinner with him.

Keywords: Leo Durocher; Politics

Subjects: Baseball.; Durocher, Leo, 1905-1991.; Galbraith, John Kenneth, 1908-2006.; Kissinger, Henry, 1923-; Politicians--Kentucky

00:19:07 - Chandler's campaigning and public speaking

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Partial Transcript: Uh, were you, uh, uh--now you became, uh, close to the governor in '67. Were you, uh, in anyway, wh, wh--how were you associated with him?

Segment Synopsis: Hare talks about Chandler's run for governor of Kentucky, including watching his campaigns and speeches. Chandler has made speeches to law students and a small college's graduation. Chandler has been on television campaigning, and Hare thinks he was just as effective on television as in person. They discuss Chandler's ability to read the crowd at speeches, with him picking out people in the audience and establishing a connection with that individual that ended up affecting the whole audience.

Keywords: Campaigning; Personality; Political campaigns; Public speakers; Speaking ability; Speeches

Subjects: Politicians--Kentucky; Politics and government; Politics, Practical; Public speaking.

00:28:26 - Golfing with Chandler

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Partial Transcript: You play golf with him very often, Mr. Hare?

Segment Synopsis: They discuss Hare golfing with Chandler, including the "game" of Chandler not taking the last shot. Hare tells a story where he needled Chandler about having a "down hill lie" in a golf game.

Keywords: Friendships; Golfing; Relationships

Subjects: Golf.

00:33:39 - Interactions with Chandler and George Wallace

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Partial Transcript: Let me ask you, uh, now sixty--it was '68 that there was some negotiation with, uh, Governor Wallace of Alabama about Governor Chandler maybe running on the ticket with him for the presidency.

Segment Synopsis: They discuss Hare's relationship with Chandler when he was planning on running with Wallace for president. Chandler and Hare went to Louisville to meet Wallace. Wallace tells a story at this meeting about selling bibles door to door when it was raining and Chandler stopping and telling him he was sorry he couldn't offer a ride because there was no room. Wallace said from that day forward he loved Chandler. Hare says that it was a mistake that Chandler was not appointed as Wallace's running mate and he has no idea why Chandler wasn't chosen.

Keywords: George Wallace

Subjects: Family histories.; Family--history; Politicians--Kentucky; Politics and government; Politics, Practical; Wallace, George C. (George Corley), 1919-1998.

00:44:01 - Chandler's family

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Partial Transcript: I know, uh, Mrs. Chandler, Mama, has been a very important figure, uh, not only obviously in the family sense, uh, personal sense, but also to the governor's political career.

Segment Synopsis: Hare discusses Chandler's wife, children, and grandchildren. He mentions that he has been close friends with Ben since college and that Dan is five years younger and close friends with Hare's sister. He doesn't know the other two children as well as he knows Ben and Dan. The interviewer asks about Dan's problem with the IRS, such that Chandler was deeply upset. Hare also had problems with the IRS around the same time as Dan, but they weren't related to Dan's problem. The interviewer then asks about Mrs. Chandler's problem with alcohol, which Hare denies having seen any evidence of, and asks about Chandler having any relationship problems with other women, which Hare also denies.

Keywords: Ben Chandler; Children; Dan Chandler; Family issues; Mildred Chandler; Sons; Taxes; Wives

Subjects: Families.; Family histories.

00:48:38 - Chandler's personal relationships with friends

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Partial Transcript: Uh, what--I, I know this, uh, this gets, uh, maybe beyond your, uh, ability to comment other than any other general citizen of Kentucky would, but what in your opinion, just from your personal point of view, have been this man's major contributions to the state of Kentucky?

Segment Synopsis: Hare identifies the University of Kentucky Medical Center as an important contribution by Chandler to Kentucky. Hare then goes on to tell a personal story about the importance of the Med Center to him. His wife seemed to have a recurrence of her bone cancer and Hare went to see Chandler and ask his advice. They drove back to Lexington to the head of the Med Center and Chandler asked for the surgeon who was in England to return to Lexington. The doctor gave personalized attention to Hare's wife and they learned it was not a recurrence of the cancer. They describe Chandler as a very warm person who will do anything for his friends, but also as someone who can be awful to his enemies. Chandler is also described as extremely loyal and as someone whose friendships only end because the other person terminates the friendship. Hare mentions that Chandler has an expression that people are either at your feet or at your throat. Hare thinks most people don't know Chandler as well as they think they did. Hare tells another story about Chandler and him attending a baseball game where Hare wasn't allowed to sit with Chandler because he wasn't on the official list but Chandler demanded that Hare be allowed to sit with him.

Keywords: A. B. Chandler Medical Center; Albert B. Chandler Hospital; Chandler Medical Center; Personal relationships; UK Chandler Medical Center

Subjects: Friendship

01:13:56 - Importance of Jackie Robinson / Concluding the interview

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Partial Transcript: Let me get back, uh. I asked you about what you consider, uh, the, the big things, you named the medical center. What about, what--do you, would you name other things that, just from your point of view as a Kentuckian you feel, uh, were the great things he's done for the state of Kentucky?

Segment Synopsis: Hare once again mentions the University of Kentucky Medical Center as an important contribution by Chandler. He goes on to mention the approval of Jackie Robinson joining Major League Baseball as another influential contribution. He thinks this decision affected Kentucky because it made Chandler an international celebrity. He briefly discusses various baseball players and theorizes that some of the black players liked Chandler. Hare concludes the interview by saying he thinks Chandler should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame and that Chandler is a very just person who has had a big influence on Hare personally.

Keywords: Desegregation; Major League Baseball Hall of Fame

Subjects: African Americans--Segregation; African Americans--Social conditions; Baseball; Friendship; Major League Baseball (Organization); Racial integration in sports; Robinson, Jackie, 1919-1972