Robert Millender Papers

Accession Number: 
UP002410
Extent: 
5.5 linear feet (8 MB, 1 OS)
Date: 
1963-1978, bulk 1969-1977

Robert Millender (1916-1978) was an influential attorney, political strategist, and campaign manager in Detroit, most notable for his efforts to establish political power for African Americans in the city throughout the 1960s and 1970s. He began his legal and political career in the mid-1950s as a labor attorney, including appointments to the Workers Compensation Board and the Trade Unions Leadership Council. In the early 1960s, Millender and George Crockett, Jr. began working toward the goal of electing African Americans to prominent political offices in Detroit. In the process, Millender established himself as an instrumental force in the elections of many of Detroit's first generation of successful African American politicians by serving as campaign manager for notable politicians including Congressional Representative John Conyers, Michigan Secretary of State Richard Austin, Detroit City Council Members Robert Tindal and Erma Henderson, and Detroit Mayor Coleman Young.

The Robert Millender Papers document Millender's legal and political activities from 1963-1978, including his work as a campaign manager for numerous Detroit politicians and as an attorney active in issues related to labor activism and African American political
representation. Comprised of mostly paper records, including correspondence, memos,
speeches, meeting minutes, and promotional materials demonstrating Millender's influence on and dedication to the candidacies of African American politicians in the City of Detroit in addition to his activities as an attorney and political activist outside of his work as a campaign manager. The collection also containssome photographs and memorabilia.

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