Clarence O. Kuester, Sr., papers
Scope and Contents
Assortment of papers generated by Clarence O. Kuester, Senior. Kuester was active with the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce and a tireless promoter of the city and its business potential. The collection also contains a significant assortment of papers concerning a theatrical production entitled “Shout Freedom” which was Kuester’s brainchild and was staged just after his death, in the spring of 1948.
- Creation: 1891 - 1997
Conditions Governing Access
Collection open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Some material may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.
Clarence Otto Kuester Sr. was a lifelong resident of Charlotte, NC. He worked for the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce and was well known throughout the community. A newspaper headline that was published shortly after his death in 1948 says "Clarence Kuester was Beloved by Everyone."
Early in his business career, he entered the grocery business, working for R.E. Young as a clerk in his store. He later became a partner in the Durham-Kluppelberg grocery business. Five years later, this became the Kuester-Pharr Company, and later, the Kuester-Lowe Company. He later was one of the organizers of the Charlotte Civic Club, which later became the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce. From that point onward, Kuester became a tireless promoter and booster of Charlotte to any and all who showed an interest in doing business in Charlotte.
Among his pet projects were the sesquicentennial celebration of the Battle of King's Mountain on October 7, 1930; and the development of a theatrical production celebrating the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence. Kuester first proposed the plan in December of 1947, with the intention that it would be a production something like “The Lost Colony,” a play written by Paul Green and performed on Roanoke Island each summer since 1937. According to Kuester’s idea, this play would be performed on May 20, 1948—the anniversary date of the “Meck-Dec.” The play was staged, however, not before Kuester’s untimely death. He died of a heart attack on Friday, March 15, 1948 at the age of 72--just a little more than two months prior to the play’s May 20 production date. ---------------------- Sources: Clarence O. Kuester, Senior papers, MS0443, University of University of North Carolina at Charlotte Library.
Clarence O. Kuester, Junior papers, Mss 134, University of University of North Carolina at Charlotte Library.
2.0 Linear Feet (1 document box (shared) and 1 oversize box)
Language of Materials
Clarence O. Kuester, Sr. was active with the Charlotte Chamber of Commerce and a tireless promoter of the city and its business potential. The collection also contains a significant assortment of papers concerning a theatrical production entitled “Shout Freedom,” which was Kuester’s brainchild and was staged just after his death, in the spring of 1948.
The collection is arranged into the following six series: Correspondence (1947), Memorabilia (1891-1985), Newspaper clippings (1901-1997), "Shout Freedom," Photographs and Postcards. There is also a scrapbook that does not belong to any series.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated by Betty Kuester, in 2010.
Processed by Robert A. McInnes, September 2011.
Genre / Form
- Mecklenburg County (N.C.) -- History -- 20th century
- North Carolina -- History -- Revolution, 1755-1783 -- Drama
- Clarence O. Kuester, Sr., papers
- Robert A. McInnes
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note
Part of the Manuscript Collections, J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, UNC Charlotte Repository
Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
9201 University City Blvd
Charlotte NC 28223 United States