Charlottesville City Council (1952-1954)

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The two-year term of the Charlottesville City Council (1952-1954) ran from September 1, 1952 to August 31, 1954. The 1952 election resulted in three new members to the council; R. M. Davis (D) replaced Strother F. Hamm; S. Dexter Forbes (D) replaced Henry A. Haden (D); and Sol B. Weinberg (D) replaced James M. Barr III (IR). The two members of the council whose terms did not expire this year were Dr. William R. Hill (D) and Gus K. Tebell (D). City Manager: James E. Bowen; City Attorney: John S. Battle, Jr.


  • Charlottesville’s fiscal year began September 1, 1952 and ended August 31, 1953.

1952 Democratic primary

The election of Sol. B. Weinberg, R. M. (Jack) Davis, and S. Dexter Forbes was easy victories in the April 1, 1952 four-way race for three Democratic City Council nominations. George E. Hardy polled last.

1952 election

Charlottesville voters elected the first all-Democratic council in four years, beating down the candidacy of Republican Thomas H. Wyllie. The newly elected Councilmen won Democratic nomination in the April 1, 1952 primary, defeating George E. Hardy. [1]

Organizational meeting

September 1, 1952

William R. Hill, previously serving as vice-mayor, was elected President of the Council (mayor) for the next two years. New member Sol B. Weinberg was chosen as vice-mayor.

Regular meetings

Regular council meetings were held in City Hall on the second Tuesday of the month.

School Board

Prior to 1995, Virginia school board members were appointed by the City Council.

  • June 21, 1954 Appointments made to fill three seats on the City School Board for terms expired on June 30, 1954.


Route 250 Bypass

School desegregation

  • Handed down on May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court rules (9–0) in Brown v. Board of Education that racial segregation of children in public schools is unconstitutional. After Brown v. Board of Education ruling, Virginia Governor Harry Byrd immediately called for “Massive Resistance,” The laws were intended, in Byrd’s words, “to prevent even a single Negro child from attending public schools.”

Housing Body for city

  • April 15, 1954: Charlottesville voters approved establishment of a Redevelopment and Housing Authority “by a narrow margin of 36 votes in a climax to five years of effort to get a slum clearance and low-rent housing program organized.” The total vote of 2,174 was heavier than usual for a special election in which only one issue was involved. [2] The favorable vote meant that Mayor William R. Hill would appointed five persons to serve on a housing authority and ask Council to approve his nominees.

Keeping of animals

  • June 4, 1954: Council gave final approval to an ordinance outlawing the keeping of hogs in the city after January 1, 1955.
  • June 7, 1954: Council rejected a claim against the dog funds for a lamb allegedly killed by a dog since it is illegal to keep sheep in the city

Sewage treatment

  • June 7, 1954, City Council was notified by the State Water Control Board that a definite plan of action for improvement to Charlottesville’s sewage treatment facilities must be presented to the board at its next regular meeting, June 29-30. The city was ordered by SWCB a number of years prior to cease dumping raw sewage in the Rivanna Rive as part of a plan to eliminate pollutions of all streams and rivers.

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  2. Web. Housing Body for City Voted by Slim Margin, staff, Daily Progress, Lee Enterprises, April 16, 1954, retrieved January 13, 2020. Print. April 16, 1954 page one.

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