A Guide to the Clement Dixon Johnston Papers, 1939-1979 (Bulk 1942-1962) Johnston, Clement Dixon, Papers Ms1982-012

Clement Dixon Johnston Papers, 1939-1979 (Bulk 1942-1962)

A Collection in
Special Collections
Collection Number Ms1982-012


Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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Processed by: Special Collections Staff

Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.
Collection Number
Clement Dixon Johnston Papers, 1939-1979 (Bulk, 1942-1962)
Collection Number
19.0 cu. ft. 19 boxes
Johnston, Clement Dixon, 1895-1979
Please note: This collection is in off-site storage and requires 2-3 days notice for retrieval. Please contact Special Collections for more information.
The collection contains correspondence, speeches, scrapbooks, diaries, photographs, and other memorabilia from Johnston's tenure and local and national politics and business.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish material from Clement Dixon Johnston Papers must be obtained from Special Collections, Virginia Tech.

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: Clement Dixon Johnston Papers, Ms1982-012, Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.

Acquisition Information

The Clement Dixon Johnston Papers were donated to Virginia Tech University Libraries in 1982.

Processing Information

The Clement Dixon Johnston Papers is in its original order. An box-level inventory was created after the donation and materials were later moved to larger boxes. The inventory was used to create this finding aid in January 2011.

Biographical Note

Clement Dixon Johnston (1895-1979), a native of Louisville, Kentucky, graduated from Centre College in 1916. He began a career in business and public affairs in 1926 when he founded the Roanoke (Virginia) Public Warehouse. Johnston served at various times as president of the Roanoke Chamber of Commerce (1934), deputy director of the U.S. Office of Civil Defense Planning (1947-1948), president of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (1954-1955), and special representative of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee to study the foreign aid program in Southeast Asia (1956-1967). In 1960, he served as president of the Virginia State Chamber of Commerce.

During World War I, Johnston served as an Infantry Captain and Company Commander in the Panama Canal Zone. He retained reserve status until accepting a World War II assignment. He was Warehouse Officer for the Army Ordinance Field Service for nearly three years. Johnston completed his war service in China as Ordinance Supply Officer and Staff Quartermaster for "Z" forces under General Stillwell.

Scope and Content

Johnston's papers include correspondence, speeches, letterbooks, scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, diaries, photographs, and memorabilia from his local and national business, political, and military careers. The majority of the collection consists of subject files (especially Johnston's service with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and foreign aid work) and correspondence.


The collection is in its original order.

Boxes 1-9 and 12 include subject files in alphabetical order. Boxes 9-11 contain speeches from local and national events. Boxes 13-16 include correspondence, arranged chronologically. Box 17 contains military materials, honors and awards, and photographs. Box 18 includes publications. Boxes 18-19 contains scrapbooks.

Index Terms


  • Local/Regional History and Appalachian South

Contents List

Subject Files
  • Box 1
    AWA (American Warehousemen's Association), 1942-1952; Advisory Committee, Office of Defense Transportation; Air Force Seminar, 1949; American Association of Nurserymen, 1955; American Chain of Warehouses, 1942-1949; American Petroleum Institute; Boy Scouts of America; Boys Club of America; Colleges and Universities (Centre, VMI, VPI, UVA); Hospital Fund Development; Burrell Memorial Hospital, 1942-1958.
  • Box 2
    Burrell Memorial Hospital, 1959-1961; Community Hospital; Jefferson Lewis-Gale; McVitty House; Junior Achievement; Modern Arts Club; Monroe Library & Foundation; Rotary International; Sales Executives Club; Politics (Important letters, Democrats for Nixon, Goldwater-Byrd, Nixon-Lodge); Port Terminal Investigation; State Department; Taber Committee (Congress), 1953; Poly-Scientific Corporation; Travel (1955 State Department tour of Australia, India, and other Pacific countries; 1960; Argentina Trip, 1961; 1964-1-65; 1971-1972; 1975).
  • Box 3
    Rotary International; Roanoke Chamber of Commerce; Virginia State Chamber of Commerce, 1942-1960.
  • Box 4
    Virginia State Chamber of Commerce, 1960-1962; Virginia State Chamber of Commerce, 1962-1975; U.S. Chamber of Commerce--Conference of National Organizations.
  • Box 5
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce--Conference of National Organizations; U.S. Chamber of Commerce--Foreign Affairs Committee (Australia, New Zealand, India, Pakistan, 1955-1956; Southeast Asia, 1956-1957; Testimony before the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee); Government documents relating to foreign aid ( see list below); U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1942-1950 (Committee on International Political & Social Problems, Southeastern Division of U.S. Chamber of Commerce--Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, GA offices).
    Scope and Content
    List of government documents relating to foreign aid
    January 1957 The Objectives of U.S. Economic Assistance Programs February 1957 Greece, Turkey, and Iran February 1957 No. 2: Personnel for the Mutual Security Program February 1957 No. 7: American Private Enterprise, Foreign Economic Development, and teh Aid Programs March 1957 No. 3: The Role of Foreign Aid in the Development of Other Countries March 1957 No. 4: The Use of Private Contractors in Foreign Aid Programs March 1957 No. 7: Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, Laos, Burma, and Indonesia) May 1957 Foreign Aid--Report of the Special Committee to Study the Foreign Aid Program
  • Box 6
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1946-1952 (Southeastern Division; International Chamber of Commerce, 1945-19446; Young Men's Committee; William K. Jackson, president, 1946-1947; Eric A. Johnston, president, 1945-1946; Finance Budget & Audit; Committee on International Political & Social Problems); U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1948-1954 (Circle X; Commission on Intergovernmental Relations; Congressional Study; Civil Defense; National Automobile Dealers' Association); U.S. Chamber of Commerce (Armed Forces Manpower Committee; Arch Booth; Ralph Bradford; Brookings Institution; Canada-U.S. Committee; Defense Production Act; Federal Surplus Relief Corporation; Foreign Aid; Government Expenditures).
  • Box 7
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce (Military Spending Committee; Universal Military Training; International Political & Social Committee; Political Committee; Policy Committee/Nominating Committee; President Seyferth); U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1952-1955 (including congratulatory letters); U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1955-1960.
  • Box 8
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1956-1959; U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 1961, including Circle X.
  • Box 9
    U.S. Chamber of Commerce--Project Adequate Roads.
  • Box 12
    Trade Associations, including: Merchandise Warehousing Code Authority (Minneapolis; Chicago; Savannah, GA; Dallas; Seattle; Fort Worth; Boston); Commercial Code--Virginia (National--minutes, by-laws, proceedings, complaint hearings; National Recovery Administration; Newspaper Clippings; Southern Warehousemen's Association--1935 convention, proxy to vote, list of subscribers; D.L. Tilly; Clover Farm Stores, 1935; W. M. Caudell; Frank M. Cole; Lorena W. Coop; A. Lane Cricher; R. G. Culbertson; Distribution Warehousing; J. F. Duffy; Elmer Erickson; Miscellaneous.
  • Box 9
    Speeches--loose-leaf notebooks.
  • Box 10
    Speeches--large loose-leaf notebook, miscellaneous manuscript and typescript notes; Speeches identified by "Title," subject, or site of delivery ( see list below).
    Scope and Content
    List of identified speeches
    "Alternative Pathways"
    "America's Priceless Heritage - The Competitive System"
    Armed Forces
    Australian Broadcasting Commission
    Bar Association
    "Boundless Business Frontiers"
    Business & Industry
    "Centers of Initiative"
    Chamber of Commerce
    Civic Affairs
    Democracy - Citizenship
    Democratic National Committee
    Economics - "Pathways to Progress"
    Education - Colleges & Universities
    Foreign Aid
    Free Enterprise
    "Go South Young Man"
    Hibernian Society
    Industrial Editors
    Middle Man ("Jobber")
    Minimum Wage Law
    National Affairs
    "The New Renaissance"
    Ohio State Chamber of Commerce
    Orlando Chamber of Commerce
    "Pathways to Progress"
    "Price Controls" [a recording]
    Public Housing
    "Rendezvous with Destiny"
    Right to Work
    Transportation - Roads
    "Unaware and Unalert"
    Welfare State
    World-International Leadership
  • Box 11
    Numerous legal pads filled with handwritten notes and rough drafts. Many editorial references (clippings, brochures, etc.).
  • Box 12
    General Correspondence, 1942-1950.
  • Box 13
    General Correspondence, 1950, 1951.
  • Box 14
    General Correspondence, 1952, 1953.
  • Box 15
    General Correspondence, 1953, 1954-1955, 1955-1957.
  • Box 16
    General Correspondence, 1958-1960, 1961, 1962-1964.
  • Box 17
    General Correspondence, 1964-1979.
Memorabilia (Honors, Photographs, Scrapbooks)
  • Box 17
    Military (Diaries, 1942-1943; Legion of Merit correspondence); Honorary degrees; Photographs.
  • Box 18
    Scrapbook: Hospital fund drive.
  • Box 19
    Scrapbooks: 3 covering U.S. Chamber of Commerce presidential year, 1954-1955; Roanoke Campaign for Refugee and Overseas Relief, 1939 (includes a 12-minute sermonette); The story of "Alternative Pathways," 1952.
Publications and Clippings
  • Box 18
    Chamber of Commerce programs, policies, directories; Government documents ( see list below); Magazine articles ( see list below); Miscellaneous publications ( see list below); Newspaper clippings.
    Scope and Content
    Government documents
    How the Tax Rate Reform Would Benefit You (Herlong-Baker bills)
    1963 Congressional Handbook
    Under the Dome--How Our Congress Works
    Page from June 16, 1959 Congressional Record
    A Study of Civil Defense, 1948
    Civil Defense for National Security, OCDP, 1948
    The Federal Budget in Brief (FY1956)
    Overlapping Taxes in the United States
    Magazine articles
    Newsweek, May 10, 1954, p. 77
    Newsweek, February 28, 1955, p. 26
    Washington Report, May 7, 1954
    Washington Report, May 13, 1955
    Manufacturers Record, April 1955, p. 41
    Florida Motor Court Journal, November 1954
    The Commonwealth Magazine of Virginia, May 1954
    Nation's Business, June 1954, p. 38
    Illustrated Weekly of Pakistan, September 4, 1955, p. 9
    American Association of Commerce Publications
    American Warehousemen's Association program
    Washington (D.C.) Trade Association Executives membership list, 1954
    The American Forum, April 24, 1955--"Women Want to Know"
    "The Economics of the Guaranteed Wage"
    "'Fringe' Benefits"