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Quiet Revolution in the South: the Impact of the Voting Rights Act, 1965-1990 [Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia] (ICPSR 6646)

Published: Jan 12, 2006

Principal Investigator(s):
Chandler Davidson; Bernard Grofman

Version V1

The purpose of this study was to examine the causes of gains in Black office-holding in the South over the past two decades, including effects of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 on changes in local city election structure, the enfranchisement of Blacks in the South, and the prevention of the dilution of minority votes in terms of enabling Blacks to win local office. The data are longitudinal, gathered at two points in time at the city level. The collection includes eight state-specific data files that contain variables such as type of election system in use at each time period (at-large, single-member district, or mixed), total number of Black council members at each of two time points for each city, total number of council members, 1980 Census city total population, 1980 Census Black city population, and voting age population. Also included is "Table Z," a set of state-specific supplementary tables listing all lawsuits filed between 1965 and 1989 under the Fourteenth Amendment, the Fifteenth Amendment, or the Voting Rights Act by private plaintiffs or the Justice Department that challenged at-large elections in municipalities in all eight of the southern states covered in this study, and in counties in Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia.

Davidson, Chandler, and Grofman, Bernard. Quiet Revolution in the South: the Impact of the Voting Rights Act, 1965-1990 [Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia]. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 2006-01-12.

Export Citation:

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National Science Foundation (SES #88-9090392 and SES #88-13931)

1965 -- 1990

1989 -- 1990

The data files in Parts 1-9 are comma-delimited and are intended to be read by a spreadsheet program. They have, as the first line, a row of variable names. The remainder of each data file is one record per case. The files of Table Z are provided as ASCII text files (Parts 10-19) and as Rich Text Format (RTF) files in Parts 20-29, suitable for importation into a word processor program.

Data were collected at two points in time separated on average by about 15 years. The earlier time point was 1974 for all states except Alabama, North Carolina, Virginia, and Georgia. For Alabama the earlier time point was 1970, for North Carolina, 1973, for Virginia, 1977, and for Georgia, 1980. The later time point was 1989 for all states except Georgia, for which it was 1990. In all but two of the states, only cities with a Black population of 10 percent or more were examined. Exceptions were Texas, where a combined Black and Hispanic population of 10 percent was the threshold, and North Carolina, where a combined Black and American Indian population threshold of 10 percent was used. Data were collected in each state for cities over a certain size, using 1980 United States Census figures. The population threshold was 1,000 in Mississippi, 2,500 in Louisiana, 6,000 in Alabama, and 10,000 in Georgia, Texas, and South Carolina. In North Carolina all incorporated cities were examined, including cities with a population of less than 500. The Virginia data include all cities that are "independent," and, as a result, cities with as few as 4,840 inhabitants are included.

Cities and counties in Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.

election records, 1980 United States Census of Population and Housing, and court case records

administrative records data


survey data



2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 30 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.


  • Data in this collection are available only to users at ICPSR member institutions.

  • The citation of this study may have changed due to the new version control system that has been implemented.
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