Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Oral History: David Tarpley

Listen to David Tarpley, who came to LAS in 1971, describe his early experiences at the Legal Aid Society as well as some interesting cases.
David Tarpley

Highlights include discussion of Hardy v. Doyle in which then Legal Services of Nashville filed suit against every general sessions judge.

"It was kind of scary," Tarpley said. "We were watching where we were going and how well we were driving."

The interview includes suits filed against the Seasoned Sash Companies, a major consumer rights case in the late 1980s.

"They would call and set up an appointment for around 6 p.m., promising it would only take an hour," Tarpley said. "We learned later through discovery that a team of two salesmen would come to your house and often they were monitored from outside. If they spent less than four hours in your home without making sale, their pay was docked."

"In some cases the doors and windows that were purchased exceeded the value of the house."

Oral History: Russ Overby

Listen to Russ Overby, an attorney with the Legal Aid Society, describe the organization and the major cases of his career there.

Highlights include Russ describing the early years, including his work on behalf of prisoners in Tennessee, the Cloverbottom Youth Center case and his work with the Tennessee Justice Center.

"The Supreme Court had held several years earlier that, like adults, juveniles had right to counsel in cases where their liberty was at stake," Overby said. "Well, some of the juvenile judges were not impressed by what the Supreme Court had to say. So for a period of three or four years, we brought a stream of habeas corpus acts and the purpose was to determine if the juvenile was afforded the right to counsel."

Monday, April 28, 2008

Legal Aid Society Marks 40 Years of Fighting for Justice

In February of next year, the Legal Aid Society will mark its 40th anniversary. This web site will be a place for former attorneys, staff, volunteers and clients to help us chronicle the history of the organization.

Our goal is to build a comprehensive history – to demonstrate how far we have come and to illustrate how much further we have to go.

In the months to come, we will be constructing a timeline, interviewing the people who were there, outlining major cases and building an archive of photographs, recordings and documents. Along the way, we would like to have your input.

Are you an alumnus of the Legal Aid Society? Are you a client who received help? Do you have a story to tell? If so, we invite you to take part in this project. We are looking for stories, oral histories, photographs, case notes and anecdotes. We believe we have a significant story to tell, but we cannot do it alone.

The timeline below is a beginning. We will continue to add to it as more information becomes available. If you have a story or anything else you’d like to share with us, email it to legalaidsociety@gmail.com.