A Guide to the John Edward Lawler papers, 1924-1974 Lawler, John Edward, papers M 148

A Guide to the John Edward Lawler papers, 1924-1974

A Collection in
Special Collections and Archives, James Branch Cabell Library
Collection number M 148


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Virginia Commonwealth University, James Branch Cabell Library

Special Collections and Archives
James Branch Cabell Library
Box 842003
Virginia Commonwealth University
Richmond, Virginia 23284-2003
USA
Phone: (804) 828-1108
Fax: (804) 828-0151
Email: libjbcsca@vcu.edu
URL: http://www.library.vcu.edu/about/special-collections/cabell/

© 2002 By Virginia Commonwealth University. All rights reserved

Processed by: Special Collections and Archives Staff

Repository
James Branch Cabell Library
Identification
M 148
Title
previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit previous hitLawler next hit papers1924-1974
Quantity
7.56 Linear Feet 18 document cases
creator
previous hitLawler next hit, previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit
Language
English

Administrative Information

Use Restrictions

No restrictions on use.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions on access.

Preferred Citation

Box/folder, previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit previous hitLawler next hit papers, 1924-1974, Collection # M 148, Special Collections and Archives, James Branch Cabell Library, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, Va.

Acquisition Information

Gift of previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit previous hitLawler to Special Collections and Archives on 17 February 1982.


Biographical / Historical Information

previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit previous hitLawler next hit was born 19 May 1908 in Mobile, Alabama to parents Ida Dickens and Matthew Joseph previous hitLawler next hit, Sr. He attended boarding school and college at Spring Hill, a Jesuit school in Mobile. In 1930 he moved to Washington, D.C., and he received law degree in 1935 from Georgetown University. He joined the ranks of the Federal Bureau of Investigation that same year.

As an FBI agent, he received assignments to the Buffalo and Los Angeles field offices in the first few years of his career before returning to Washington in 1937 where he would serve in several different divisions. His work in Washington included the investigation of automobile thefts and kidnappings, as well as intelligence operations. He also recounts in the collection's oral history that, for a time, he was an administrative assistant to J. Edgar Hoover. In 1939, previous hitLawler next hit was appointed Special Agent in Charge of the Richmond field office, but in August of the following year, he was called back to Washington to assist with the organization of the agency's Special Intelligence Service. previous hitLawler next hit was assigned to the Special Agent in Charge post in Richmond once again in 1942, a position he would hold until his retirement in 1950. previous hitLawler next hit and his wife, who met and married in Richmond, had two daughters and two sons before their divorce in the mid-sixties.

Following his retirement from the Bureau, previous hitLawler next hit established a private legal practice and was engaged by the Union Life Insurance Company, later renamed the Interstate Mutual Fire Insurance Company, as a vice-president and general counsel. At the same time, previous hitLawler next hit also took on work for the newly created Central Intelligence Agency, organizing the Richmond-based Old Dominion Research Company, an entity used by the CIA for agent support and training.

previous hitLawler next hit was also an active member of the Richmond political scene. He served as a member of the Richmond City Council from 1956 to 1960, starting out by filling six months of Ed Haddock's unexpired term and was subsequently elected to two more terms. Other community roles he took on included serving as an alternate director of civil defense and as chairman of the city's Personnel Board, as well as holding seats on law enforcement advisory boards for the city and state. previous hitLawler next hit was also a dedicated member of the city's exclusive Commonwealth Club, particularly in his later years.

On 31 December 1982, previous hitLawler next hit was found dead in his Riverside Drive home at the age of 74. Four young people had broken into previous hitLawler's next hit home, robbed him, and beaten him to death. previous hitJohn next hit Ballard, was found guilty of the murder, and the other three were convicted on related charges.

Scope and Contents

The bulk of the collection consists of materials created or acquired by previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit previous hitLawler next hit in the course of his professional life. The papers contain material for potential research in law enforcement, counter-espionage and intelligence, labor relations, law enforcement, and politics of the Richmond area. The papers are particularly rich in the areas of law enforcement and training.

There is a great wealth of material from previous hitLawler's next hit career with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Washington, D.C. and in Richmond. Materials include FBI office memoranda, printed publications, reports, previous hitLawler's next hit lesson plans, manuals, mimeographed training materials issued by the Milwaukee and Washington, D.C. police departments, clippings, and photographs. The content of these materials reflect previous hitLawler's next hit involvement with Bureau investigative and counter-espionage work, as well as anti-Communist activities, including the surveillance of Richmond resident Alice Burke, state secretary of the Communist party. In the original processing of the collection, an attempt was made not only to establish an easily used subject files but also to maintain what remained of previous hitLawler's next hit original file order in the papers. There are numerous mimeographed and printed documents in the series that were preserved because they were maintained in previous hitLawler's next hit working files and were likely used frequently by him for training purposes. Moreover, it was deemed advisable to maintain the FBI publications for the benefit of researchers unable to travel to Washington, D.C., or to long-term government Depository Libraries.

The collection also includes materials documenting previous hitLawler's next hit life after his retirement from the FBI in 1950. The largest grouping of these materials consists of training materials for Virginia law enforcement as well as several files of materials documenting his active role in Richmond politics, particularly his time as a city council member. There is also a file of materials from the Old Dominion Research Company, a CIA entity that previous hitLawler next hit helped to establish in Richmond in the mid-1950s. Also found in the collection are a number of files concerning previous hitLawler's next hit legal practice, including his work as vice-president and general counsel for the Union Life Insurance Company, later renamed the Interstate Mutual Fire Insurance Company, including a group of materials relating to cases before the National Labor Relations Board against the company.

Arrangement

The collection is organized into four series: Series 1: Personal materials, 1924-1980; Series 2: FBI materials, 1935-1967; Series 3: Richmond materials, 1937-1975; Series 4: Legal Practice, 1944-1975.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

  • City council members -- Archives -- Virginia -- Richmond
  • Espionage, American -- 20th century.
  • Insurance -- 20th century -- Virginia -- Richmond
  • Law enforcement -- Virginia -- Richmond.
  • previous hitLawler next hit, previous hitJohn next hit previous hitEdward next hit -- Form subdivision--Archives.;
  • Lawyers -- Archives -- Virginia -- Richmond
  • Richmond (Va.) -- Politics and government -- 20th century.
  • United States. Central Intelligence Agency -- Form subdivision--Archives.; General subdivision--Officials and employees;
  • United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation -- Form subdivision--Archives.; General subdivision--Officials and employees;
  • United States. Federal Bureau of Investigation -- General subdivision--Officials and employees;

Container List

Series 1: Personal materials
1924-1980
  • Box-folder 1
    1
    Correspondence
    1953-1959
  • Box-folder 1
    2
    List of Mrs. Lawlers' personal possessions
    undated
  • Box-folder 1
    3
    Oral history
    1980
  • Box-folder 1
    4-5
    Yearbooks
    1924, 1926, 1932
Series 2: FBI materials
1935-1967
  • Box-folder 1
    6
    Internal memoranda
    1938-1939, 1949
  • Box-folder 1
    7
    Lecture material
    1935-1938, undated
  • Box-folder 1
    8
    Lessons, Milwaukee Police Department
    1937-1947, undated
  • Box-folder 1
    9
    Lessons, Washington, D.C. Police Academy
    1946, undated
  • Box-folder 2
    1
    Manual of Instructions
    1941
  • Box-folder 2
    2-4
    Manual of Instructions
    circa 1944
  • Box-folder 2
    5
    Manual of Rules and Regulations
    1942
  • Box-folder 2
    6
    Mug shots
    undated
  • Box-folder 3
    1
    National Defense Manual
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 3
    2-3
    National Defense Manual
    circa 1944
  • Box-folder 3
    4
    National Police Academy materials
    1945-1949
  • Box-folder 3
    5
    Newspaper clippings
    1938-1943
  • Box-folder 3
    6
    Notices
    undated
  • Box-folder 3
    7-8
    Official photographs
    undated
  • Box-folder 4
    1
    Photographs - Ballistics
    undated
  • Box-folder 4
    2
    Photographs - Technical laboratory
    undated
  • Box-folder 4
    3-5
    Publications Book I
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 4
    6-7
    Publications Book II
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 5
    1-2
    Publications Book III
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 5
    3-4
    Publications Book IV
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 5
    5-6
    Publications Book V
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 6
    1-2
    Publications Book VI
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 6
    3-4
    Publications Book VII
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 6:5, 7:1
    Publications Book VIII
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 7
    2
    Richmond field office - Christian committee newspaper clippings
    1943, undated
  • Box-folder 7
    3
    Richmond field office - Communist activities
    1948-1949, undated
  • Box-folder 7
    4
    Richmond field office - Communist party members
    1948, undated
  • Box-folder 7
    5-6
    Richmond field office - Crime survey
    1944-1948, undated
  • Box-folder 7
    7
    Richmond field office - Juvenile delinquency
    1946-1957, undated
  • Box-folder 7
    8
    Richmond field office - Lectures
    1944-1948
  • Box-folder 7
    9
    Richmond field office - Report writing
    1937-1945, undated
  • Box-folder 8
    1
    Richmond field office - Schwarzschild Jewelry case
    circa 1950
  • Box-folder 8
    2-3
    Richmond field office - Thompson motor vehicle theft case
    1947
  • Box-folder 8
    4
    Special Speech Material
    1940-1942
  • Box-folder 8
    5
    Subject file - Arson
    1944-1947, undated
  • Box-folder 8
    6
    Subject file - Ballistics
    1935-1940, undated
  • Box-folder 8
    7
    Subject file - Bank robbery
    1938, 1948-1949
  • Box-folder 9
    1
    Subject file - Communist party
    1945-1947
  • Box-folder 9
    2
    Subject file - Communist party line
    circa 1950, undated
  • Box-folder 9
    3
    Subject file - Counterfeiting
    1943, undated
  • Box-folder 9
    4
    Subject file - Criminal identification
    1936-1948
  • Box-folder 9
    5-6
    Subject file - Criminal investigation
    1937, undated
  • Box-folder 9
    7
    Subject file - Criminal law and procedure
    1938-1942, undated
  • Box-folder 9
    8
    Subject file - Desertion from the armed forces
    1946-1948
  • Box-folder 9:9-10, 10:1
    Subject file - Espionage
    1938-1945, undated
  • Box-folder 10
    2
    Subject file - Examinations
    1937-1945, undated
  • Box-folder 10
    3-4
    Subject file - Federal law violation cases
    1946-1949
  • Box-folder 10:5-6, 11:1
    Subject file - Fingerprints
    1935-1948, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    2
    Subject file - Firearms
    1943-1946, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    3
    Subject file - Firearms Training
    1941-1946, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    4
    Subject file - Footprints
    1949, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    5
    Subject file - Hoover, J. Edgar published materials
    1937-1967, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    6
    Subject file - Industrial plant protection
    1940-1941, undated
  • Box-folder 11
    7-8
    Subject file - Juvenile delinquency
    1939-1949, undated
  • Box-folder 12
    1
    Subject file - Kidnapping and bank robbery
    1936-1939, undated
  • Box-folder 12
    2
    Subject file - Kidnapping, Fried case
    1936-1939
  • Box-folder 12
    3-4
    Subject file - Kidnapping, Ross case
    1936-1938
  • Box-folder 12
    5
    Subject file - Kidnapping, school data
    1938-1939, undated
  • Box-folder 12
    6
    Subject file - Narcotics
    1938
  • Box-folder 13
    1
    Subject file - Photography
    1937-1948, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    2
    Subject file - Poison
    1939-1940
  • Box-folder 13
    3
    Subject file - Portrait parle
    1943, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    4-5
    Subject file - Public relations
    1938-1948, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    6
    Subject file - Rape
    1945, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    7
    Subject file - Records
    1940, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    8
    Subject file - Report writing
    1943-1949, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    9
    Subject file - Search and seizure
    1938-1939, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    10
    Subject file - Selective service
    1940-1946, undated
  • Box-folder 13
    11
    Subject file - Self defense
    1944
  • Box-folder 13
    1-2
    Subject file - Technical laboratory
    1935-1949, undated
  • Box-folder 14
    3
    Subject file - Traffic enforcement
    1937-1948, undated
  • Box-folder 14
    4
    Subject file - Unlawful flight
    1937
  • Box-folder 14
    5
    Subject file - Wartime law enforcement
    1941-1942, undated
  • Box-folder 14
    6-8
    Tour manual
    circa 1940s
  • Box-folder 14
    1-2
    Training School schedules
    1937-1939
Series 3: Richmond materials
1937-1970
  • Box-folder 15
    3-4
    Old Dominion Research Fund
    1954-1967
  • Box-folder 15
    5-6
    Political campaign materials
    1953-1967, undated
  • Box-folder 15
    7
    Richmond Police Department
    1948-1968, undated
  • Box-folder 16
    1
    Richmond Regional Planning District Commission, Law Enforcement Committee
    1970
  • Box-folder 16
    2
    Virginia civil defense councils
    1941, undated
  • Box-folder 16
    3
    Virginia law enforcement training - Criminal investigation
    1937-1947, undated
  • Box-folder 16
    4
    Virginia law enforcement training - Criminal law
    1948, undated
  • Box-folder 16
    5
    Virginia law enforcement training - Due process
    undated
  • Box-folder 16:6, 17:1
    Virginia law enforcement training - Law of arrest
    1938-1949, undated
  • Box-folder 17
    2-3
    Virginia law enforcement training - Rules of evidence
    1937-1950
  • Box-folder 17
    4
    Virginia law enforcement training - Searches and seizures
    undated
Series 4: Legal Practice
1944-1975
  • Box-folder 17
    5
    Interstate Mutual Fire Insurance Company report
    1974
  • Box-folder 17
    6
    Invoices
    1970-1975
  • Box-folder 17
    7
    Labor relations
    1969-1970, undated
  • Box-folder 17
    8
    Mears, Edgar H. photograph
    1961
  • Box-folder 17
    9
    Smith, Stephen C.
    1974-1975
  • Box-folder 17
    10
    Stationary
    undated
  • Box-folder 17
    11
    Unemployment Compensation Commission
    1944
  • Box-folder 17:12, 18:1-5
    Unions
    1958-1960
  • Box-folder 18
    6
    Wood, William C.
    1964-1970, undated

Significant Persons Associated With the Collection

  • Lawler, John Edward
  • Lawler, John Edward -- Form subdivision--Archives.;

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

  • Richmond (Va.) -- Politics and government -- 20th century.