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Letter from Daniel Meador to Ronald Sokol, Wednesday, December 18, 1996

Daniel J. Meador
James Monroe Professor of Law Emeritus [ital.]

December 18, 1996

Mr. Ronald P. Sokol
14, rue Principale-B.P.3
13540 Puyricard

Dear Ron:

It has been far too long since I have written, and my only excuse is a variety of travels and involvements and the major interruption caused by the move of my office from Withers Hall to Slaughter Hall (the former Darden School building).

Beginning in mid-July I had to “downsize” radically in order to make the move from the two rooms I was occupying to the one room for my new office. I sent truck loads of books to the library, and threw out reams of old files. Still, it has been difficult to squeeze everything into my new office. The packing and unpacking took weeks. In fact, it was only shortly before Thanksgiving that I finally became settled in my new office, with everything sorted out and in place. There is not an inch to spare. Slaughter Hall is a fine building, having been completely refurbished and reconfigured inside.

There is still much to do here. The front connecting link–known as Clay Hall–has just been opened up so that we can now go between Slaughter and Withers Halls through a large and rather impressive corridor. The rear connecting link–Hunton and Williams Hall–is still under construction. All of this will not be completed until summer. It will be a grand setup eventually, and you must plan to come back to see it.

Mary Lee Stapp reported recently that she had lunch with you and others of the Golden Mean crowd in London. Neville Clark remains a mystery to me, and I would like to take you up on your offer to find out more about him. I cannot figure out whether he is serious or whether he is just stringing Mary Lee along. Is he a fraud or is he really a person of substance on matters of this sort? Mary Lee is quite impressed with your contributions and thinks that you are the best addition to the project that she has acquired in many a day.

Jan and I went to Sicily and Rome in October with basically the same group with which we went to Spain a year ago and in charge of the same retired romance language professor who celebrated his 88th birthday and 60th wedding anniversary on this trip. I had never been to Sicily and found the Greek ruins there to be quite impressive. I was somewhat disappointed with the food on this trip, and the schedule was not as well worked out as on the trip to Spain. Nevertheless, I am glad that I went.

I am finding the revisions on my new novel to be much more time-consuming and tedious than I had envisioned. The more I look at it and play with it the more I see that it can be improved. I am trying not to rush matters, but I do hope to be able to wrap it up by around the first of February and get it into the hands of the publisher.

580 Massie Road • Charlottesville, Virginia 22903-1789 • 804.924.3947 • FAX 804.924-7536 [ital.]

[end of page 1]

Mr. Ronald P. Sokol
December 18, 1996
Page Two

Richard Lillich’s death was a sad event. I do not know who has taken over the Sokol Colloquium from him, but I hope some responsible, interested person has assumed that responsibility. As I have said before, you should definitely plan to come some year for that event. You are always welcome to stay with us.

Last May I had the interesting experience of appearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee to testify on the role of the ABA Committee in the selection of federal judges. Last week I went to Washington and testified before an ABA Commission that is studying the independence of judges. I now have the task of preparing a paper for a conference in March on the Civil Justice Reform Act of 1990. That is quite a controversial piece of legislation, and the results of it are quite mixed. Another project I am pursuing is the editing of the papers presented at the conference on the Korean War held here in the Law School several years ago. The person who had originally agreed to edit the papers never did so, and then he died. So I have now agreed to take over the project rather than see these papers lost to posterity. Actually, the project fits in quite well with my novel, and I am finding it useful in that connection.

As we are unlikely to send out Christmas cards this year, Jan and I would like to take this occasion to wish you and Junko and all of your children a fine Christmas season and a good 1997. When you find time, drop me a line to keep me up to date on your doings.


Daniel J. Meador


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