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The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 97, July 1993 - April, 1994

Southwestern Historical Quarterly

soon became chairman of the Arkansas Industrial Development Commission, an
industry-hunting agency that sought to capitalize on the Rockefeller name. Al-
though serving in a Democratic administration, Winthrop Rockefeller attempted
to use his virtually unlimited financial resources and his celebrity status to revive
the moribund Republican party in Arkansas.
In 1964 Rockefeller resigned his post to run unsuccessfully for governor. He
was successful in his 1966 campaign, however, and became (along with Claude
Kirk of Florida) the first modern Republican chief executive of a former Confed-
erate state. He served two terms before losing to Democrat Dale Bumpers in the
1970 general election.
Agenda for Reform is a straightforward and generally admiring account of
Rockefeller's four years in the Arkansas statehouse. Although more comprehen-
sive and better documented, its interpretation differs rather little from that
found in The Arkansas Rockefeller (Baton Rouge, 1978), by Rockefeller aide John
L. Ward. Even though "Arkansans simply were not interested in many improve-
ments if it meant they had to pay the cost" (p. 20), Cathy Kunzinger Urwin ob-
serves, Governor Rockefeller nevertheless managed to drag them into the
modern world. She concludes that "Rockefeller achieved an extraordinary
amount of success during his four years in office" (p. 202). At the same time, he
was unable to create a viable Republican alternative in Arkansas, and conse-
quently "his influence on the GOP in Arkansas and in the rest of the South was
relatively small" (p. 208).
Agenda for Reform is a competent study and should be of interest to students of
Arkansas politics and of the Rockefeller family.
University of Georgia NUMAN V. BARTLEY
William Wayne Justice: A Judicial Biography. By Frank R. Kemerer. (Austin: Univer-
sity of Texas Press, 1991. Pp. xiv+481. Preface, black-and-white pho-
tographs, appendix, notes, index. $29.95.)
Throughout most of American history, federal trial court judges have served
in comparative anonymity. Periodically, a particular suit or series of suits have
brought a certain federal district judge to the public's attention. Before long,
however, such awareness usually ebbed. In East Texas, however, presided a fed-
eral judge who proved to be an exception to this rule: William Wayne Justice.
Like Frank M. Johnson of Alabama, Justice has had an impact upon society and
law which transcended his local district. Frank R. Kemerer's fine study belongs
to a small but growing number of works which use biography to explore the op-
eration and significance of the lower federal courts.
Kemerer devotes about a quarter of the book to Justice's upbringing in the
East Texas community of Athens. Growing up in Henderson County, an area
which retained populist traditions well into the twentieth century, Justice's liber-
al outlook on life and law was influenced by his mother Jackie and father Will.
Justice's father was a legendary trial lawyer, noted for his ability to sway juries. Af-
ter graduating from the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, Justice


Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 97, July 1993 - April, 1994. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. Accessed April 30, 2016.

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