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Marguerite Williams papers

Identifier: POL-0023

Scope and Contents note

This collection contains papers, videos, and photographs relating primarily to Williams’ activities with the Republican political party.


  • 1970-1990

Conditions Governing Access note

Open to all users; no restrictions

Conditions Governing Use note

Rights have been transferred to the University of West Georgia.

Biographical/Historical note

Marguerite Neel Williams (1917-1999) was a key leader in preservation in Georgia, especially her hometown of Thomasville. Born in 1917, Marguerite Neel attended public schools in Thomasville and then attended Duke University. On April 3, 1936, she married Thomas Lyle Williams, Jr. She and her husband had two children, Thomas Lyle Williams III and Diane, and lived for many years in Illinois. The family returned to Thomasville in 1969 when her husband retired.

Williams championed historic preservation in Thomasville, supporting such innovative programs as the acquisition of the Lapham-Patterson Houses as a state-owned historic site. She was the founder of the Thomasville Antiques Show, Inc. as well as a board member of Thomasville Landmarks. She was a founding Trustee of the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation; elected president in 1974, she also as the first membership chair. Williams served as Trustee for more than 20 years. In 1982 the Trust honored her with the Mary Gregory Jewett Award for distinguished service in the field of preservation. Through the Williams Family Foundation, she made possible such programs as the Georgia Trust’s Main Street Design Assistance and Heritage Education.

Under Governor Zell Miller, Williams served on the Governor’s Development Council, helping to devise an economic growth plan for the state. She also influenced the establishment of the Georgia Heritage 2000 grants for rehabilitation projects and the upgrading of the State Historic Preservation to a Division. She served on the State Commission for the Preservation of the Capitol.

Williams served on the Fine Arts Committee of the U.S. Department of State. She was an advisor and Trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation and was chair of the Heritage Society. In 1997 she received a high honor from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Louise de Pont Crowninshield award. Williams died in 1999.


6.05 Linear feet (15 boxes)




Papers of Marguerite Williams, 1970-1990, largely relating to her activities with the Republican political party.

Immediate Source of Acquisition note

Donated by Marguerite Neel Williams in 1990.

Processing Information note

Coverted from a paper finding aid by Blynne Olivieri in 2013.

This collection has been only minimally processed.

Guide to the Marguerite Williams papers POL-0023
Finding aid prepared by Written by Blynne Olivieri
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English

Repository Details

Part of the University of West Georgia Special Collections Repository

Special Collections, Ingram Library
University of West Georgia
1601 Maple Street
Carrollton GA 30118-2000 United States