We have updated our Oral History web pages with the transcript of a 1999 interview conducted by Herb Hartsook with Harry Clayton Walker (1925-2008).
Walker served as Governor Fritz Hollings’ legal assistant from 1959 to 1963. He was responsible for all legal matters that reached the Governor’s office, advised Hollings on the constitutionality of bills sent for the governor’s signature, oversaw statewide appointments and those requiring Senate confirmation, and served as disaster coordinator for South Carolina and as liaison with all law enforcement. This latter capacity proved particularly challenging, as Walker worked closely with SLED chief Pete Strom (at left, in profile) to ensure the peace during this watershed period of civil rights activities.
As Walker notes, “When I went to work in the morning, I never knew where I was going to lay my head...that night.” In this interview, he reflects on his service, particularly civil rights matters, and provides his appraisal of Hollings’ gubernatorial legacy.