Interview with Constance Baker Motley
QUESTION 35
INTERVIEWER:

LAST TIME YOU GAVE US A DESCRIPTION OF MEREDITH AS BEING THE THRIFTIEST PERSON YOU EVER KNEW AND IT, IT STUCK IN MY HEAD AS BEING REALLY, SAYING SOMETHING ABOUT HIM.

Judge Constance Baker Motley:

Now, during the course of the trial in the Meredith case as I've said, the court allowed the state officials to get Meredith's military record, Meredith had to consent. He felt he had nothing to hide really, and of course the state was looking for something to discredit him and it was a boom-a-rang so to speak in that they found that in his Army record one of his superior officers had said that Meredith was the thriftiest man in the service in terms of conversation of men, money and materials. He used to save scraps of paper and he saved all of his earnings while he was in the service. He was married part of the time and I think his wife worked and he had an opportunity while he was stationed in Japan for example to live in housing provided for American servicemen, but he and his wife elected to live in the rice paddies with the Japanese where it cost very little money. And that was because Meredith was saving every penny. The state thought he had a lot of money and they wanted to know the source of it. And there it was in his Army record that he saved all of his money. He had one suit the whole time that I knew him and that kind of thing. He wore Army fatigues and he just didn't spend any money. He, he was a poor boy of course, but he was certainly a very thrifty person.

[reference tone]

CAMERA CREW MEMBER:

This is sound roll [?].