George Henderson

University of Oklahoma

George Henderson, Ph.D., joined the University of Oklahoma faculty in 1967. He and his wife, Barbara Henderson, were the first African-American couple to purchase a home in Norman. In this interview, he will tell you how difficult it was to make that purchase. Dr. Henderson is the author of 28 books and has served as the Dean of OU’s College of Liberal Studies. In 1969 he founded the Department of Human Relations in which he served as director. Dr. Henderson was the first African-American in the State of Oklahoma to hold an endowed professorship. His name has become synonymous with efforts to promote diversity and interracial understanding.

Our discussion with Dr. Henderson includes his friendship with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Bud Wilkinson, Dick Gregory and Bill Russell. He talks about his decision to support non-violence while seeking equality for African-Americans. A visit to Oklahoma’s Little Dixie made him realize he was ready to die for racial equality. Dr. Henderson and his fellow activists set in motion many institutional changes that continue to this day. His book Race and the University may be purchased in our bookstore.

Interview with George Henderson

Program Credits:
George Henderson — Interviewee
John Erling — Interviewer
Mel Myers — Announcer

Honest Media
Mel Myers — Audio Editor

Müllerhaus Legacy Website Team
Douglas Miller — Art Director
Mark DeMoss — Webmaster
Laura Hyde — Upload Coordinator
Anne Hall — Transcriptionist

Date Created: May 18, 2011

Date Published: November 21, 2012

Photo Credits: Slideshow images from “Good Guys Wear White Hats, The Life of George Nigh” by Bob Burke

Notes: Recorded by John Erling in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Digital Audio Sound Recording, Non-Music.