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Inventory of the Edwin Meese papers, 1951-1991
91005  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Collection Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Related Materials
  • Biographical/Historical Note
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Arrangement Statement
  • Index of Major Groups

  • Collection Summary

    Title: Edwin Meese papers
    Date (inclusive): 1951-1991
    Creator: Meese, Edwin.
    Collection Number: 91005
    Repository: Hoover Institution Archives
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Collection Size: 771 manuscript boxes, 1 oversize box, 1 card file box, 1 envelope, 4 phonotape cassettes, 2 motion picture film reels (325 linear feet)
    Abstract: Speeches, correspondence, memoranda, reports, schedules, press releases, legal documents, printed matter, photographs, and sound recordings related to California politics and administration of the California state government during the governorship of Ronald Reagan; and to American domestic policy, Republican Party politics, and federal administration of justice during the presidency of Ronald Reagan.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Language of the Materials: The collection is in English.

    Administrative Information

    Access

    Closed.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Edwin Meese papers, [Box number], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Materials were acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1991 and in an increment in 1995.

    Accruals

    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/ . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in the online catalog is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.

    Related Materials

    Ronald Reagan subject collection, Hoover Institution Archives
    Citizens for Reagan records, Hoover Institution Archives
    Governor and the Students videotape series, Hoover Institution Archives

    Biographical/Historical Note

    1931, Dec. 2 Born, Oakland, California
    1954-1955 Served in the United States Army
    1953 A.B. in public administration, Yale University
    1958 J.D., University of California, Berkeley
      Married Ursula Herrick
    1959-1967 Deputy district attorney, Alameda County, California
    1967-1968 Legal affairs secretary (previously called secretary on clemency and extradition) to Governor Reagan
    1969-1974 Executive assistant, chief of staff to Governor Reagan, Sacramento, California
    1975-1976 Vice president, administration, Rohr Industries, Chula Vista, California
    1976-1980 Attorney at law
    1977-1978 Director, Center for Criminal Justice Policy andd Management, University of California, San Diego
    1977-1981 Professor of law, University of California, San Diego
    1980 Chief of staff and senior issues advisor, Ronald Reagan Presidential Campaign
    1981-1985 Counselor to President Reagan, Washington, D.C.
      Member of President Reagan's Cabinet
      Member of the National Security Council
    1983 Recipient, Distinguished Public Service Award
    1985 February-1988 August U.S. attorney general, Washington, D.C.
    1988- Distinguished visiting fellow, Hoover Institution, Stanford University, California
      Ronald Reagan chair in public policy, The Heritage Foundation
    1992 Author, With Reagan: The Inside Story
    1996 President, Council for National Policy
    1996-2004 Member, Board of Visitors, George Mason University
    1997 Author, Making America Safer
    2001-2013 Chairman, Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, Heritage Foundation
    2004 Author, Leadership, Ethics and Policing
    2006 Member, Iraq Study Group
    2008 Named honorary Reagan fellow of Eureka College, Illinois
    2012 Recipient, Bradley Prize

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The collection was acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1991 and arranged into seven groups, including a biographical file, speeches and writings, and materials from Meese's time serving President Reagan at the White House and his work as attorney general in the Department of Justice. The majority of the collection was received as an increment to this original accession. Although the incremental materials have not been arranged, the materials are divided into two major groups based on Meese's service to Ronald Reagan during Reagan's terms as governor of California and president of the United States. The index to major groups can serve as a guide to the incremental materials in the collection.
    The Edwin Meese papers document Meese's role in the presidential and gubernatorial administrations of Ronald Reagan. The collection contains speeches, correspondence, memoranda, reports, schedules, press releases, legal documents, printed matter, photographs, and sound recordings related to California politics and administration of the California state government during the governorship of Ronald Reagan; and to American domestic policy, Republican Party politics, and federal administration of justice during the presidency of Ronald Reagan.
    Meese began his work for Ronald Reagan during Reagan's two terms as governor of California. In his book With Reagan, Meese notes that he was recommended to the governor based on his experience with law enforcement. From 1967 to 1968, Meese served as legal affairs secretary, tasked with resolving issues of extraditions, prisons, and capital punishment, as well as acting as a liaison to legal, judicial, and law enforcement departments. From 1969 to 1974, Meese was executive assistant and chief of staff, directing the governor's executive office and serving on the cabinet. In this role, Meese also had responsibilities concerning the National Guard, the Office of Emergency Services, and the Office of Criminal Justice Planning. The Gubernatorial Administration of Ronald Reagan file documents Meese's work during this period through correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, speeches, and court documents.
    During Reagan's campaign for the presidency in 1980, Meese served as chief of staff and senior issues advisor. In order to devote time to the campaign, Meese spent less time teaching as a professor of law at UC San Diego and gave up his duties managing the Center for Criminal Justice Policy and Management. After Reagan was elected, Meese served as a counselor to the president and as a member of his cabinet.
    Boxes 566 to 582 document the Iran-Contra Affair, a scandal involving the sale of arms to Iran in exchange for Iran's help in releasing American hostages. In November 1986, after news of the scandal became public, Meese announced that some of the money gained from selling arms to Iran had been used to fund the Contras in Nicaragua. The collection includes clippings, correspondence, memoranda, testimony of Meese and others, phone logs, and chronologies related to the Iran-Contra Affair.
    From February 1985 to August 1988, Edwin Meese held the position of attorney general of the United States. In this role, Meese influenced policy initiatives concerning drug abuse, civil rights, and criminal procedure, in addition to creating a national marijuana eradication program. His accomplishments included prevention and control of crime, improvement of the criminal justice system, protection of civil rights, promotion of economic growth, improvement of the legal system, government financial integrity, and the preservation of constitutional values. The Presidential Administration of Ronald Reagan file documents Meese's work during Ronald Reagan's presidency from 1981-1988, including his efforts as the 75th attorney general of the United States.
    Source: Meese, Edwin, III. With Reagan: The Inside Story. New York: Regnery Gateway, 1992.
    As required by law, security- classified materials have been removed from the collection until they can be declassified by government officials.

    Arrangement Statement

    Initial accession, boxes 1-127, arranged in seven groups. Incremental materials, boxes 128-773, ordered as acquired. Original order and titles retained. See index to major groups for content.

    Index of Major Groups

    Box Nos. Groups
    128-554, 772-773 film shelf Gubernatorial Administration of Ronald Reagan file, 1951-1974. Contains correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, and court documents related to Meese's role during Ronald Reagan's terms as governor of California.
    349-353, 364-367 Agriculture and Services Agency
    481-487 Appointments to government positions
    312-335 Budget
    370-378 Business and Transportation Agency
    160-170 California Council on Criminal Justice (CCCJ)
    456-480 Clippings
    191-193 Community and minority relations
    288-300 Conference file
    144-149, 154-155, 501-505, 529 Correspondence and memoranda
    390-395 Department of Corrections
    193-201, 487-494 Education
    176-190 Emergencies and disaster planning
    440-446 Energy
    424-439 Environment
    378-387, 552 Health and Welfare Agency
    494-497 Intelligence
    206-217, 247-251, 300-311 Intergovernmental management
    217-240, 264-271 Legal affairs, legislation, and crime
    240-247, 259 Military
    395-408 Office of Economic Opportunity
    170-174 Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act
    771 Photographs
    255-261, 509-511 Schedules of Reagan and Meese
    773 Sound recordings
    511-515 Speeches and speaking engagements of Meese
    280-286 Speeches of Ronald Reagan
    357-364 State employees
    230-236, 488-490 Student radicalism, activism, and unrest
    338-348 Tax reform
    447-449 Water
    409-418 Welfare
    554-771 Presidential Administration of Ronald Reagan file, 1980-1991. Contains correspondence, clippings, memoranda, reports, schedules, and court documents related to Meese's role during Ronald Reagan's presidency, including Meese's service as attorney general from 1985 to 1988. See also boxes 1-127.
    563-566, 608-627, 644-658, 693-701, 736-769 Alphabetical file
    627-629 Chronological file
    710-716 Clippings on Iran
    602, 690-692, 708 Correspondence
    585-596 Drug prevention
    566-581 Iran-Contra Affair
    686-689 Republican National Committee
    729-736 Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation
    554-556, 559-561, 582-584, 599-600, 603-608 Schedules of Reagan and Meese
    653-658 Speeches and travel file

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Reagan, Ronald.
    Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- )
    United States. Dept. of Justice.
    Audiotapes.
    California--Politics and government--1951-
    Justice, Administration of--United States.
    United States--Politics and government--1981-1989.