Maddox, Lester G.

Maddox, Lester G. (Lester Garfield Maddox, Sr), 1915–2003, U.S. public official, governor of Georgia (1967–71), b. Atlanta. He achieved national notoriety in 1964 when he drove African Americans from his restaurant in defiance of federal civil-rights legislation and then closed the establishment rather than desegregate it. Elected (1966) governor as an avowed segregationist with the support of the Ku Klux Klan, he was unable to stem the tide of integration. Although prevented by the state constitution from succeeding himself as governor, he was subsequently elected lieutenant governor (1971–75). He was an unsuccessful candidate for the 1974 and 1990 Democratic gubernatorial nomination and in the 1976 presidential election.

See biography by B. Galphin (1968).

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