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Kelly M. Alexander, Jr. papers

Identifier: MS0233

Scope and Contents

The collection contains primarily papers and documentation concerning Kelly M. Alexander, Junior and his work with the NAACP at the local, state, and national levels. As his brother (Alfred L. Alexander) and mother (Margaret Alexander) were also involved in the Civil Rights Movement and the NAACP, there are also papers from them in this collection. There is also a small amount of material from Kelly's grandfather, Zachariah Alexander (who was also involved in the Civil Rights movement) and the Alexander Funeral Home.

In addition to his work with the NAACP, Kelly Alexander was also involved in several other organizations that were concerned with social change, and documentation for them is contained in this collection. These organizations are: International House, Mothers of Murdered Offspring, the NC Civil Liberties Union, the NC Department of Environment, Health and National Resources, the NC Health Planning Commission, the NC League of Municipalities, the NC Manpower Corporation, the NC School Improvement Panel, the NC School Improvement Panel, Save Our State, and the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.


  • Creation: 1953 - 2008


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is 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.

Biographical / Historical

Kelly M. Alexander, junior was born to Kelly Alexander, senior and Margaret Alexander, in 1948.

Kelly matriculated through the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, earning a bachelor's degree in political science, and a master's degree in public administration. He later went on to teach courses in political and social sciences at universities in North and South Carolina.

Like his father and grandfather, he carried on the management of the family business--the Alexander Funeral Home, in Charlotte, North Carolina, which is the oldest African-American business in Charlotte.

Like his parents, Alexander became deeply involved in the Civil Rights movement, beginning his work with the NAACP at the age of nine. Over the years, he held nearly every important position within the organization at the local, state and national levels. He was a member of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Branch Executive Committee. He served as the president of the North Carolina State Council of Branches, a trustee of the Special Contribution Fund, and as Vice Chairman of the NAACP Image Awards Committee. He served as a member of the NAACP National Board of Directors for twenty six years, and was a vice president of the national organization for twelve years.

In addition to his work with the NAACP, he also served with several other organizations involved in social change, including the Board of Directors of the Greater Charlotte Chamber of Commerce. He was the first African-American to be appointed to the Airport Advisory Committee (1978-1984). He was involved in the effort to prevent an amendment to the North Carolina Constitution that would allow state assembleymen to serve for a maximum of four terms (rather than two). He chaired Mayor Eddie Knox's task force for the revitalization of West Trade Street. He served on the Charlotte Charter Review Commission, and authored the "equitable representation" clause of the city charter. In 1987, he served as a member of the Governor's Task Force on Racist Violence. He served on the North Carolina Martin Luther King Commission from 1987 to 1989, and the Citizenship/Economics Education Advisory Council. He served on the Board of Directors of the Police Athletic League in 1982, and the International House, the United Way's Social Planning Council, and the North Carolina Health Planning Commission's Advisory Committee on Financing in 1994. He served on the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation Advisory Board, and the Advisory Board of the Philanthropy Journal of North Carolina.

Alexander later went on to win a seat in the North Carolina State Assembly. Among the committees on which he serves are the Agriculture, Banking, Commerce & Job Development, (Subcommittee on Business and Labor), Environment, Finance, Public Utilities, and Redistricting committees.


26 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The collection consists of papers generated primarily by Kelly M. Alexander, junior, as a result of his work with the NAACP at the local, state and national levels. Other papers in this collection were generated by Mrs. Margaret Alexander (widow of Kelly M. Alexander, senior), and Alfred Alexander (Kelly junior's brother) in his capacity as president of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Chapter of the NAACP. The collection contains a wide variety of documentation concerning nearly all aspects of the Civil Rights movement and the NAACP.


As this collection contains such a diversity of material, the arrangement of this collection is complex. At the highest level of hierarchy, the collection is divided into record groups according to the people whose papers are contained herein. These are Kelly M. Alexander, Junior, Alfred L. Alexander, Margaret Alexander, and Zachariah Alexander (there is also a small series of materials for the Alexander Funeral Home). These series are subdivided into subseries. As this collection was donated by Kelly M. Alexander, Junior, the overwhelming majority of the papers in this collection concern himself. Alexander was primarily involved with the NAACP and the Civil Rights movement, and the vast majority of files in collection 233 concern the NAACP at the national, state and local levels. Because of the hierarchical nature of the NAACP it is important to note that the files for state conference branches are "nested" within the files of the national organization. Files for the North Carolina State Conference of Branches are found under "N" for "North Carolina." Likewise, within the North Carolina NAACP files are files for "Branches" and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Branch records are located within that subseries, along with files for other branches within the state. The researcher should know that the NAACP and its subsidiaries often dealt with many of the same issues (such as affirmative action, economic development, redistricting and voter education, to name a few) and papers concerning these issues can be found in the files of the NAACP at the national, state and local levels. Though the NAACP files make up the vast majority of this collection, they are not its only documentation. Kelly Alexander was (and continues to be) involved in many different causes, and within the Kelly M. Alexander record group, there are subseries for International House, Mother of Mudered Offspring, the NC Civil Liberties Union, the NC Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources, the NC League of Municipalities, the NC Manpower Corporation, the NC School Improvement Panel, Save Our State, and the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Kelly M. Alexander, Junior

Related Materials

Collection 55 -- the papers of Kelly M. Alexander, senior. Collection 91 -- the papers of Frederick D. Alexander.

Legal Status

Ownership of the collection has been transferred to the UNC Charlotte Special Collections by means of a Deed-of-Gift, from Kelly M. Alexander, Junior.

Inventory for the Kelly M. Alexander, Jr., 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

Repository Details

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

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