Bob Simms Collection
The Bob Simms collection documents the life and activities of Robert H. Simms in the black communities in Coconut Grove and Miami and reflects his work with the Community Relations Board and the Defense Race Relations Institute. The collection also contains campaign materials from Leah Simms, the first African American female judge in the state of Florida, and the "Glory in the Grove" photographs of people and events at the George Washington Carver elementary and high schools in Coconut Grove before desegregation. A final component of the collection includes photographs, correspondence and clippings of General "Chappie" James and his family. General James was the first four star African American General and married Dorothy Watkins.
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Date of Original
The Bob Simms Collection documents the life and activities of Robert H. Simms in the black communities of Coconut Grove and Miami. Born in Snow Hill, Alabama, in 1927, Bob moved to Florida in 1953 to join the faculty of the George Washington Carver schools in Coconut Grove. In Miami, he served as Executive Director of the Metro Dade Community Relations Board from 1968 to 1983, developed the Miami Inner-City Minority Experience (MICME) for the U.S. Department of Defense in the 1970s, and led efforts to create and implement the Inner City Marine Project (now known as the Mast Academy).
With his late wife Aubrey Watkins Simms, he was a founding member of the Church of the Open Door in Liberty City and is the father of Leah Simms, the first black woman to serve as a judge in Florida. In addition to Leah Simms campaign materials, the Bob Simms Collection features numerous photographs and documents from Simms' life, including the "Glory in the Grove" photographs of people and events at the George Washington Carver elementary and high schools in Coconut Grove before desegregation.
University of Miami. Library. Special Collections