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Letter from Daniel Meador to Ronald Sokol, Friday, December 11, 1992

[office stamp]

Daniel J. Meador
James Monroe Professor of Law [itals.]
December 11, 1992

Mr. Ronald P. Sokol
B.P. 3
13540 Puyricard

Dear Ron:

Thank you for your recent letter. I do indeed apologize for my long delay in writing you.
I have had on hand your letter of many months back, with the intention of responding, but, as
usual, I have been caught up in a variety of matters that have simply caused me to procrastinate.

We have just finished another semester, and I am now facing a crop of bluebooks. My
life over the last year has involved the usual array of activities, including a variety of meetings
and conferences as well as the usual Law School matters.

It is interesting that you ask about Lamar. Recently I had a letter from the Dean of the
Law School at the University of Mississippi saying that they were planning a special celebration
next fall to mark the 100th anniversary of Lamar’s death. I have been asked to deliver the
principle address on that occasion. It is an invitation that I cannot refuse. So once again I am
back into the attic to resurrect my notes and drafts from thirty years ago to see what I can put
together that will make an appropriate talk for the occasion. As you may recall, I did the same
thing five or six years ago when Chief Justice Burger asked me to make the annual address at
the Supreme Court Historical Society. I believe I sent you a copy of my talk on that occasion,
concerned with the fight over Lamar’s appointment to the Court. This time I will attempt to
survey his life in a much broader way and to see what might be derived from his experiences by
way of some useful insights into human problems and with the possibility of deriving some lessons for our time. This may be the last opportunity I have to speak on and write about Lamar, so I should try to say all that I have to say about him.

As to my little book, American Courts, it is selling fairly well in this country. Also, the
U.S. Information Agency has now contracted with West Publishing Company to have it translated into Spanish (to be published by a company in Mexico City) and into twelve languages in the former USSR, with a printing of 5,000 copies in each language. So it is moving out globally, and I hope that it may be of some small use to the rest of the world as well as to struggling law students and others in this country.

Telephone (804) 924-3947
Fax (804) 924-7536

[end of page 1]

Mr. Ronald P. Sokol
December 11, 1992
Page Two

As to my novel, again your question is timely. I tinkered around with revisions on it for
two or three years and then began the arduous task of attempting to get a literary agent (after
several frustrating attempts to deal directly with book publishers). I discovered that it is as
difficult to obtain a literary agent as it is to obtain a publisher. To make a long story short, I do
now have a literary agent, a woman in Memphis, who talks a good game. I just entered into a
contract with her earlier this fall, and she now has the manuscript in the hands of a publisher
who is supposed to be giving it serious consideration. She has other ideas of where to go if this
publisher turns her down. Thus, I am keeping my fingers crossed, with hopes for the best. In
the meantime, I finally decided to start another novel, a project I have had in mind for a long
time but on which I have been discouraged by the lack of publishing opportunities for the one
I have already done. I am just now into the third chapter of this new venture, so there is a long
way to go. This one is set first in the Korean War period but then in later years and indeed right
down to our own time.

For the last two or three years I have been working off and on on a project to publish
selected writings and speeches of Hardy Dillard. This involves the screening of dozens and
dozens of files containing both published and unpublished material. This selection process is now pretty much over, and I am undertaking to do a biographical essay that will lead off the volume.  In the meantime, I am investigating the possibilities of a publisher, and that may take some time.  I view this project as still having at least another year to go.

After a year’s suspension, we are reactivating the Graduate Program for Judges. At the
moment we are receiving applications for admission to the next class that will enroll in June,
1993. It was nice to have a summer off after twelve years in this business, but I rather look
forward to having another crop of judges on hand next summer for the usual six-week session.

I am interested to hear of your current writings. If you have anything you have published
in English, I would indeed be happy to have a copy. I was quite surprised to hear that you are
thinking of relocating in England. Is you old friend Lyn Mostyn still there? When I was in
London in 1985 for the ABA meeting I looked him up in the telephone book but found no
listing. I concluded that he must have retired or moved away. I gather you are interested in
getting into some sort of professional work in England. I would think there would be room there
for someone as well versed in both French and American law as you now are and also with the
Japanese connection. For years it has been my hope to visit you in the south of France. That
dream may be frustrated if you make the move soon. But if you stay where you are long enough
I may get there yet. I would surely like to, and Jan has been insisting on it for several years.

As to the Washington scene, I do not anticipate being involved in this administration.
I have had little or no contact with anyone who is intimately involved with the transition team
or with the Clinton campaign. I hear that 40,000 resumes have been received by the transition
people, so the lines are long for positions in the government. As always, I would be quite happy
to serve in any capacity where I thought I could be useful in the public service, but I am not one
of those who is lining up panting for an appointment. I appreciate your comments about
drumming up support for some appointment, but I would not like to see that take place.

[end of page 2]

Mr. Ronald P. Sokol
December 11, 1992
Page Three

I greatly appreciate your writing again, especially in the absence of any response from me
to your previous communication. Jan joins me in sending our very best wishes to you and your
family for a good holiday season and with the hope that 1993 will be a good year and one in
which you can work out your plans to your satisfaction. Keep me posted on any move that may
be in the offing.


Dan [handwritten signature]

Daniel J. Meador


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