Collection 2006.001 - The Emory Folmar Papers

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Identity area

Reference code

US US-almoca 2006.001


The Emory Folmar Papers


  • 1977 - 1999 (Accumulation)

Level of description


Extent and medium

The Emory Folmar Papers consists of 236 cubic feet of records housed in 126 records boxes.

Context area

Name of creator

Biographical history

Archival history

Born in Pike County, Alabama on June 3, 1930, Emory McCord Folmar graduated from Montgomery’s Sidney Lanier High School and served as a United States Army ranger during the Korean War. Shortly after his military service Folmar attended the University of Alabama and graduated with a business degree. Folmar entered politics in 1975 when he won a seat on the Montgomery City Council, later becoming council president. In 1977, Folmar became mayor of Montgomery when a scandal forced then Mayor James Robinson to resign. Folmar held the position of Mayor for twenty-two years, the longest consecutive tenure of any Montgomery mayor. Folmar was also at the vanguard of the state’s Republican Party, serving as its chairman. As a result of his involvement in the Republican Party, he received political appointments from both President Ronald Reagan and President George H.W Bush. In 1982 Folmar unsuccessfully ran for Governor of Alabama against incumbent George Wallace. Folmar took 40% of the vote, proving to be a formidable opponent for Wallace who sought his fourth term in office. Folmar finally relinquished his role as Mayor of Montgomery in 1999 when he lost to Democrat Bobby Bright. Emory Folmar died on November 11, 2011 at the age of 80.

Immediate source of acquisition or transfer

The Montgomery County (Alabama) Historical Society (MCHS) donated the Emory Folmar Papers to the Montgomery County Archives (MCA) 2006 by signing a deed of gift on December 15, 2006. To complete the transfer to the MCA, Anita Folmar, the original donor of the papers to the MCHS, signed a deed of gift transferring the papers to the MCA on December 18, 2006.

Content and structure area

Scope and content

This collection documents Emory Folmar’s twenty-two year tenure (1977-1999) as mayor of Montgomery, Alabama. While the collection includes personal materials, such as birthday cards and invitations to social functions in Montgomery, it primarily consists of materials documenting Folmar’s political career, including his work with the Montgomery police and fire departments, as well as his work within the Alabama Republican Party. Significant themes and subjects in the Folmar Papers include the development of the Alabama Shakespeare Festival and the Montgomery Zoo, Folmar’s involvement with Maxwell Air Force Base, and his relationship with Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W Bush. Much of the collection concerns itself with records related to Folmar’s unsuccessful 1982 campaign for governor of Alabama. Additionally, a number of records relate to the social activities of Folmar’s wife Anita, including her involvement with the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), Montgomery Council on Aging, and firearm safety training courses. The Folmar Papers are largely textual and include memoranda, minutes and agendas, financial and legal material, clippings, publications, and related printed matter. Other formats in the collection include photographs and artifacts such as plaques, ephemera, and campaign paraphernalia.

Appraisal, destruction and scheduling

The Montgomery County Archives’ mission statement notes that the MCA collects non-government records, as long as they pertain to the history of Montgomery County.


No further accruals are expected.

System of arrangement

This collection is organized into three series:

Series I: Office Files

• Sub-series I: Over-sized newspaper clippings

The “Office Files” series dominates the Emory Folmar Papers collection, consisting of 121 of the 126 boxes in the collection. The series contains a wide assortment of topic matter, including everything from Folmar’s work as mayor of Montgomery, Alabama, to his run for governor of Alabama in 1982. Press clippings, correspondence, materials related to Folmar’s multiple mayoral re-election campaigns, records created in the course of the day-to-day functioning of the city, are among the records represented in this series. Because Folmar served as mayor of Montgomery for so long, 1977-1999, the “Office Files” series provides a fascinating glimpse into Montgomery’s political, social, and economic spheres over a twenty-two year period. The one sub-series of Series I, “Over-sized newspaper clippings” trace Folmar’s political career over time, as well as—like the office files—providing an engrossing look at political, economic, and social life in Montgomery.

Series II: Photographs and other images

• Sub-Series I: Scrapbooks

Because Emory Folmar served as mayor of Montgomery so long, the photographs in this collection provide a pictorial history of Montgomery over a twenty-two year period. The photographs in series II depict everything from city council meetings to programs at the Montgomery Zoo. In particular, the photographs show the extent to which the physical landscape of Montgomery has changed over time.

Series III: Ephemera

The “Ephemera” series contains records like political pins, resolutions, pamphlets, assorted publications, etc.

Conditions of access and use area

Conditions governing access

Collection is open for access with the exception of box 110, which is restricted due to privacy concerns. This box contains individuals’ medical information and social security numbers, as well as information related to police investigations. Researcher must demonstrate need to review materials in box to county archivist and probate court assistant chief clerk or chief clerk.

Conditions governing reproduction

It is presumed corporate and individual copyrights have been retained by copyright owners. Copyright restrictions apply. Users of materials should seek necessary permissions from the copyright holders to comply with U.S. copyright laws.

Language of material

  • English

Script of material

Language and script notes

Physical characteristics and technical requirements

The collection consist of newspapers, paper-based office files, and paper-based photographs.

Finding aids

Uploaded finding aid

Allied materials area

Existence and location of originals

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Notes area

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Level of detail

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Accession area