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Political Papers @ USD

The University of South Dakota: A Tradition of Preserving South Dakota's Political History

In 1968, Dr. Hebert Schell, professor and former dean of the graduate school, wrote the following to Joe Foss, 20th Governor of South Dakota (1955-1959), "We sincerely hope you will find it possible to place your private papers with the University as a part of our growing manuscripts collection."  Schell continued, "You might wonder what kind of materials make up a manuscript collection.  The answer briefly is everything—your own letters, letters received, clippings, photographs, documents, pamphlets, etc."  Schell, a historian, knew the value of primary sources for study and research in the humanities.  Hence, upon retirement from the deanship, he served as the University Archivist and worked to develop the archives and special collections within the university library.  Schell's letter to Foss reflects his efforts to acquire the papers of alumni and others who held political offices at the state and national level.  Schell's efforts and those who followed him established USD as the home to the papers of Senators Peter Norbeck, Gladys Pyle, and Larry Pressler, as well as Gov.  Richard Kneip.  These political collections and others, now numbering over 30 and available in Archives and Special Collections, support research that has yielded scores of articles, theses and dissertations, and books.

When Gov. William Janklow (B.S., 1964, LL.B.,1966) donated his gubernatorial and political papers to the University he built upon the tradition initiated by Schell.  The late Governor Janklow ensured that students and scholars at USD and beyond will have access to a research collection that is integral to future scholarship on the social, economic, and political development of South Dakota during the last quarter of the 20th century.  The letters, reports, and memoranda of Janklow's four terms as governor are the centerpiece of his collection that begins with documenting his service as an attorney on the Rosebud Reservation upon graduating from USD Law in 1966.  The collection comprises hundreds of speeches and campaign spots recorded on film and video, as well as includes records from Janklow's service in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2003-2004.   

 Papers and Records of Political Figures held by Archives and Special Collections at the University of South Dakota - compiled by Doris Peterson, Archives Associate  

1.      Abourezk, James G., b.1931- – US House 1971-1972, US Senate 1973-1978
2.      Anderson, Sigurd, b.1904-d.1990 – SD Governor 1951-1955
3.      Austin, Horace J., b.1837-d.1891 – DT Council, DT House
4.      Boe, Nils A., b.1913-d.1992 – SD House 1951-1958, SD Governor 1965-1969
5.      Bushfield, Harlan John, b.1882-d.1948 – SD Governor 1939-1943, US Senate 1943-1948
6.      Christopherson, Charles A., 1871-1951 – SD House 1913-1916, , US House 1919-1932
7.      Dillon, Charles H., b.1853-d.1929, and Frances J. Scrapbook – SD Senate 1903-1910, US House 1913-1919
8.      Edelen, Mary B., b.944- – SD House 1973-1989, 1983-1992
9.      Farrar, Frank L., b.1929- – SD Governor 1969-1971
10.    Foss, Joseph Jacob, b.1915-d.2003 – SD Governor 1955-1959
11.    Gubbrud, Archie M., b.1910-d.1987 – SD House 1951-1960, SD Governor 1961-1965
12.    Herseth, Ralph, b.1909-d.1969 – SD Senate 1951-1952, 1955-1956, SD Governor 1959-1961
13.    Janklow, William J.,b.1939-d.2012 – SD Governor 1979-1987, 1994-2002; US House, 2003-2004
14.    Jolley, John Lawlor, b.1840-d.1926 – DT Council, DT House, SD Senate 1889-1892, US House 1891-1893
15.    Kneip, Richard F. (Richard Francis), b.1933-d.1987 – SD Senate 1965-1970, SD Governor 1971-1978
16.    Lacey, Charles, b.1907-d.1997 – SD House 1945-1950, 1953-1958, 1963-1970
17.    Lee, Andrew Erickson, b.1847-d.1934 – SD Governor 1897-1901
18.    Lightner, Mahlon T., b.1854-d.1929 [In Single Folder Collection] – SD Senate 1905-1906
19.    Lowe, Richard Barrett, b.1902-d.1972 – Governor of Samoa and Guam 1953-1956
20.    Lyon, William H., b.1858-d.1930 – SD House 1917-1920, 1925-1926, 1929-1930
21.    McMaster, William Henry, b.1877-d.1968 – SD House 1911-1912, SD Senate 1913-1916, SD Governor 1921-1925, US Senate 1925-1930
22.    Mellette, Arthur Calvin, b.1842-d.896 – SD Governor 1889-1893
23.    Mickelson, George Theodore, b.1903-d.1965 – SD House 1937-1942, SD Governor 1947-1951
24.    Norbeck, Peter, b.1870-d.1936 –SD Senate 1909-1914, SD Lt. Governor 1915-1916, SD Governor 1917-1921, US Senate 1921-1936
25.    Parmley, J.W. [Joseph], b.1861-d.1940 – SD House 1905-1908
26.    Pressler, Larry, b.1942- -US House 1975-1978, US Senate 1979-1996
27.    Pyle, Gladys, b.1890-d.1989 – SD House 1923-1926, US Senate 1937-1938
28.    Sharpe, Merrell Quentin, b.1888-d.1962 – SD Governor 1943-1947
29.    Todd, John Blair Smith, b.1814-d.1872 – DT House
30.    Vessey, Robert S., 1858-1929  – SD Senate 1905-1908, SD Governor 1909-1913
31.    Wickens, David L., b.1890- – SD Senate 1953-1954
32.    Williamson, William, b.1875-d.1972 – US House 1921-1932    


SD Governors, primary source for names:
Hoover, Herbert T. and John E. Miller. A new South Dakota history. Sioux Falls SD: The Center for Western Studies, 2005. List of SD Governors on Page 195.  Chilson Collection F651 .N49 2005  

SD Governors, primary source for dates:
National Governors Association.
Accessed September 22, 2010.  

DT Council, DT House, SD House, SD Senate, primary source for names up to 1951:
Sheild, Rexford M.  Alphabetical lists of members of the Dakota and South Dakota legislative assemblies from 1862 to 1951. Madison SD: Sheild, 1951. Chilson Collecton F650 .S4  

DT Council, DT House, SD House, SD Senate, primary source for names after 1951 primary source for dates:
South Dakota Legislature: Legislator Historical Listing.
Accessed September 22, 2010.  

US House and US Senate, primary source for names and dates:
Biographical Directory of the United States Congress : 1774 to present.
Accessed September 22, 2010  

US House, secondary source for names:
Wikipedia. List of United States Representatives from South Dakota.
Accessed September 22, 2010.  

US Senate, secondary source for names: United States Senate:
U.S. Senators from South Dakota.
Accessed September 22, 2010.        

DT= Dakota Territory
SD= South Dakota