Chief Justice Earl Warren, in a book to be published posthumously in May, blamed President Eisenhower for much of the nation after the Supreme Court's school desegregation decisions in the 1950s.
Warren also said that Eisenhower once defended Southern advocates of segregation as "not bad people. All they are concerned about is to see that their sweet little girls are not required to sit in school alongside some big, overgrown Negroes."
An adaptation of material in the book. "The Memoirs of Earl Warren," appears in the April Atlantic Monthly, three years after his death and eight years after Eisenhower's.
The adaptation center's of Warren account of Brown vs. Board of Education, the 1954 decision holding that segregation of hildren in public schools solely because of their race was unconstitutional, and the 1955 "Brown II" decision insisting that integration of public schools proceed "with all deliberate speed."
Warren said that he had expected "some resistance," but not the massive defiance and thwarting caused by "racist-minded public officials and candidates."
They were, he wrote, respinding mainly to the so-called Southern Manifesto, in which vitually all Southern members of Congress, on the basis of a doctrine "discredited more than a century before," urged the state s to nullify the decisions.
Warren wrote "that much of our racial strife could have been avoided" if Eisenhower merely had observed the Declaration of Independence dedicates the country to the principle "that all men are createqual . . ."
Warren said if Eisenhower had said that it was now uncinstitutional to continue "cruel practices" of discrimination against black children and that every good citizen was duty-bound to honor the court's rulings. "if he had said something to this effects, I think we would have been relieved of many of the racial problems which have continued to plague us. But he never stated that he thought the decision was right until after he had left the White House."
Warren said he had "always believed that President Eisenhower resented" the desegregation decisions.
Recalling an incident shortly before the 1954 opinion was announced, Warren said the President occasionally invited people to dinners at the White House. Because these dinners were political in nature, Warren could not participate. So, he said, he was surprised when he got an invitation from the President, but felt he should accept.
At the White House, he sat to the President's right and close to John W. Davis, counsel for states seeking to preserve segregation. Warren then gave this account:
"During the dinner, the President went to considerance lengths to tell me what a great man Mr. Davis was. At the conclusion of the meal . . . we filed out of the dinning room to another room where coffee and an after dinner drink were served.
"The President, of course, precedes, and on this occasion he took me by the arm and, as we walked along, speaking of the Southern states and the segregation cases, he said, "These are not bad people. . .'
"Fortunately, but that time others had filed into the room, so I was not obliged to reply. Shortly thereafter, the Brown case was decided, and with it weny our cordial relations . . . I can recall few conversations that went beyond a polite 'Good evening, Mr. president' and 'Good evening, Mr. Chief Justice.'"