Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Porter G. Peeples, Sr., June 30, 1987

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:07 - Arson as protest at the University of Kentucky

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Partial Transcript: Now Mr. Peeples, if you would, for the record would you state your name, your date and place of birth?

Segment Synopsis: Porter G. Peeples is introduced. He talks about student attitudes at the University of Kentucky regarding discrimination against Black students that led to the arrest of several students for starting a fire on campus.

Keywords: Arrested; Business school; Commerce Building; Fires; Gatton Business and Economics Building; Lynch (Ky.); Office of Minority Affairs

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; Campus violence; College buildings.; College environment; College facilities.; College integration; College students--Attitudes.; College students--Social conditions; Discrimination in higher education; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Minorities in higher education

GPS: Lynch (Ky.)
Map Coordinates: 36.965, -82.916667
00:02:51 - Integration of University of Kentucky athletics

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Partial Transcript: Um, integration of the athletics program over there was interesting.

Segment Synopsis: Peeples discusses the integration of athletics at UK, including the first two African American football players at the university, and the continued segregation of the basketball team under coach Adolph Rupp. He talks about how the lack of recruitment of Black athletes affected the social climate for other Black students. He talks about UK President John Oswald's progressive attitude.

Keywords: Adolph Rupp; Athletics programs; Basketball games; Dr. John Oswald; Fear; Greg Page; Liberal; Minority programs; Minority student enrollment; Nat Northington; Needs; Progressive; Race issues; Recruitment; Support systems

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; College administrators; College athletes; College environment; College football players; College integration; College presidents; College sports.; Discrimination in higher education; Kentucky Wildcats (Basketball team); Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Minorities in higher education; Race discrimination.; Universities and colleges--Administration.

00:07:13 - Life as a Black student at UK during the 1960s

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Partial Transcript: Since you, you were an undergraduate student, uh, at UK through the, the period of the sixties, so--and you somehow graduated.

Segment Synopsis: Peeples describes the camaraderie among the Black students at UK during the sixties, stating that they were each other's support system. He talks about the racism and harassment he faced at the university, and talks about why he was driven to succeed.

Keywords: Camaraderie; Dogs; Fraternities; Graduation; Harassment; Maturity; Motivation; Personality; Racial slurs; Support systems; Work ethic; Work permits

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; College environment; College integration; College students--Attitudes.; College students--Conduct of life.; College students--Social conditions; Discrimination in higher education; Greek letter societies.; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Minorities in higher education; Race discrimination.; Racism

00:10:57 - Relationship between the Black community and the University of Kentucky

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Partial Transcript: Uh, let me ask you something now about, uh, the--your role in the--as a leader in the Black community and the university.

Segment Synopsis: Peeples talks about how the Black community felt about UK and the Black students that were enrolled there. He talks about why he was involved in the recruitment of more Black students despite the difficulty they would face at the university.

Keywords: Acceptance; Adolph Rupp; Arrogant; Attitudes; Basketball; Black Student Union; Black athletes; Black students; Hate; Identity; Opportunities; Recruitment

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African American leadership; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; College choice; College environment; College integration; College sports.; College students--Social conditions; Discrimination in higher education; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Minorities in higher education; Race discrimination.; Universities and colleges--Public relations

00:16:12 - Leadership in the Black community

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Partial Transcript: I understand that, uh, there was a group, uh, oh I guess maybe about the early to mid-seventies, of Black persons in the community who formed a Black action group.

Segment Synopsis: Peeples talks about himself and other leaders in the Black community. He talks about the initial distrust he faced from the community as a graduate of UK. He talks more about recruiting Black students to attend the university.

Keywords: Acceptance; Apprehension; Black action groups; Recruitment; Support; Urban League

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African American leadership; African Americans--Conduct of life.; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; African Americans--Social conditions.; Civil rights movements--United States; College graduates; College integration; Minorities in higher education

00:18:28 - Barriers to recruitment of Black students

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Partial Transcript: Are there, uh--can you think of, uh, any things that you think are barriers to the recruitment and retention of minority students at the university now?

Segment Synopsis: Peeples talks about the barriers to recruitment and retention of Black students at UK, including a lack of Black faculty members.

Keywords: Barriers; Black faculty; Black students; Image; Pioneers; Recruitment; Retention

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; College environment; College integration; College teachers, Black; Discrimination in higher education; Minorities in higher education; Race discrimination.; Universities and colleges--Admission

00:20:47 - Current lack of awareness of discrimination

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Partial Transcript: Well I think I've exhausted the questions that I had.

Segment Synopsis: Peeples talks about how UK has changed since his days as a student, and says there is still room for improvement. He talks about the attitudes of current Black students and says that they may be unaware of the discrimination they are facing. The interview is concluded.

Keywords: "Colorblind society"; Affirmative Action; Awareness; Black students; Changes; Citadel; Dormant; Improvements; Institutions; Interest; Motivation; Recognition; University of Michigan

Subjects: African American college students--Social conditions; African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington; African Americans--Social conditions.; College integration; Discrimination in higher education; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Minorities in higher education; Race discrimination.; Racism; University of Kentucky