Guide to Senate Records: Chapter 13
Committee records discussed in this chapter:
- Committee on the Judiciary (1816-1988)
- Committee on the Revision of the Laws (1869-1928)
- Committee on Patents and the Patent Office (1837-1869)
- Committee on Patents (1869-1946)
- Select and Standing Committees on Woman Suffrage (1881-1921)
- Committee on Immigration (1889-1946)
History and Jurisdiction
13.1 The Committee on the Judiciary is one of the original standing committees of the Senate, authorized on December 10, 1816, with the approval of a resolution introduced by James Barbour of Virginia. Dudley Chase of Vermont was appointed the first chairman of the committee. The committee has met during each Congress since the 14th Congress.
13.2 Initially the committee focused on measures concerning the courts, law enforcement, and judicial administration. These subjects have remained at the core of the committee's jurisdiction. However, over the years its responsibility for other jurisdictional areas has changed in several ways. By 1820, controversies over bankruptcy policy, State boundaries, admission of new States to the Union, and contested Senate elections were referred to the Committee on the Judiciary. Some of these jurisdictional responsibilities were subject to change. After the dissolution of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction in 1867, the committee was responsible for legislation relating to the restoration of the former Confederate States to the Union. In 1871, jurisdiction over contested Senate elections was assigned to the Committee on Privileges and Elections, which became a subcommittee of the Committee on Rules and Administration after enactment of the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 (Public Law 79-601).
13.3 The Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 also restored to the committee's jurisdiction several subjects that were once under its purview but had at different times in the 19th century been assigned to other committees. Legislation controlling the apportionment of the House of Representatives had been considered by the Judiciary Committee as early as the 17th Congress (1821-23), but jurisdiction was later transferred to the Committee on Commerce, which retained it until 1946. Jurisdiction over patents, trademarks, and copyrights was lost to the Committee on Patents in 1837 and matters relating to immigration were assigned to the Committee on Immigration in 1889, but were restored to the Judiciary Committee in 1946.
13.4 From the late 1860's until 1882, when the Senate established a select committee on woman suffrage, the Judiciary Committee had jurisdiction over proposals concerning women's right to vote in Federal elections. In 1921, the standing Committee on Woman Suffrage was eliminated because the 19th Amendment had been ratified the previous year, rendering the committee unnecessary.
13.5 During the first decades of its existence, the Judiciary Committee also considered private claims, but much of its responsibility for these was taken by the Committee on Claims and the Committee on Revolutionary Claims. Although the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 added jurisdiction over claims to the Judiciary Committee's responsibility when it eliminated the Committee on Claims, records of claims committees are described separately.
13.6 Since 1947, the Judiciary Committee has also made extensive use of its standing and special subcommittees to consider legislation and to conduct investigations of a wide range of matters. The records include extensive collections of material from the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee, Antitrust and Monopoly Subcommittee, and the Juvenile Delinquency Subcommittee, as well as smaller amounts for many others.
13.7 The History of the Committee on the Judiciary, United States Senate, 1816-1981 (S. Doc. 18, 97th Cong., 1st sess., Serial 13389) provides a brief historical overview of the committee, biographical sketches of its chairmen, lists of members alphabetically and by State, and activity reports for the 80th through 97th Congresses.
13.8 This chapter describes the records of the Committee on the Judiciary and its many subcommittees (2,221 ft.), records of the Committee on the Revision of the Laws (3 in.), records of the Committee on Patents (26 ft.), records of the Committee on Immigration (36 ft.), and records of the select and standing Committees on Woman Suffrage (1 ft.).
- 14th-36th Congresses (1816-1861)
- 37th-56th Congresses (1861-1901)
- 57th-79th Congresses (1901-1946)
- 80th-90th Congresses (1947-1968)
- 91st-100th Congresses (1969-1988)
- Records of Subcommittees
13.9 The records of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1817-1946 (231 ft.), consist of committee reports and papers, 1817-47 (3 ft.); committee papers, 1847-1946 (29 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures referred to the committee, 1817-1946 (188 ft.); minutes of committee meetings, 1865-1934 with gaps and 1941-46 (3 ft., including 16 vols.); legislative dockets, 1845-96 (25 vols., 2 ft.); executive dockets, 1865-1941 (35 vols., 5 ft.); press copies of letters sent, 1885-93 (2 vols., 3 in.); legislative calendars, 1895-1934 (28 vols., 9 in.); and miscellaneous registers, 1897-99 and 1905-06 (2 vols., 2 in.). There are no extant committee minutes from March 1867 to March 1875 and no executive docket for nominations submitted to the 42d Congress (1871-73). The miscellaneous volumes are entitled "Record Book, 1897-99," and "Memoranda on Executive Matters, 1905-06"; the former appears to be a register of incoming letters and visitors, the latter a register of incoming letters relating to nominations. Records relating to certain nominations to judicial and law enforcement positions in the Federal Government referred to the Judiciary Committee are in the series nomination messages and related papers. This series includes some transcripts of hearings on nominations, but few are found prior to 1937.
13.10 The pre-Civil War records of the Committee on the Judiciary (15 ft.) include committee reports and papers (3 ft.); committee papers (1 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures referred to the committee (11 ft.); and legislative dockets (4 vols., 4 in.). The committee reports and papers consist chiefly of original committee reports on public and private bills, resolutions, and petitions and memorials, and are arranged within each Congress chronologically by date referred; for some, there is also related correspondence and other supporting papers. Also included among the records of this series are small amounts of correspondence of two chairmen of the committee, Martin Van Buren of New York (19A-D8) and John M. Berrien of Georgia (27A-D7). Beginning with the 30th Congress, the committee reports are filed separately and the remaining committee papers are arranged by bill or resolution number or, if unrelated to a specific bill or resolution, may be arranged chronologically by date of document or may be unarranged. Petitions and memorials are arranged by Congress, thereunder either by major subject and chronologically by date referred, or simply chronologically by date referred. The legislative docket is a register of all bills, resolutions, petitions, and memorials referred to the committee and summarizes the actions taken on each.
13.11 The records of the committee for this period relate to a wide variety of subjects, including, but not limited to, the Federal judiciary and judicial administration; Territorial and statehood matters, such as State boundary disputes; claims; naturalization laws; bankruptcy laws; until 1837, patents and copyrights; slavery; credentials of Senators and contested Senatorial elections; and publication and distribution of laws and federal court decisions.
13.12 The principal issues before the committee relating to the Federal judiciary and judicial administration resulted from pressures placed on the Federal judicial system by rapid westward expansion and population growth. Residents, especially attorneys and businessmen, of the Territories and Western States, such as those from Mississippi (14A-G5), would often petition the Senate for an additional Federal judge. However, others besides local residents had a vested interest in Federal judicial activities; for example, advocates of a southern Federal judicial district for Florida submitted a memorial signed by Baltimore merchants that stressed the importance of Florida trade and cited commercial activity as a reason for the new district (20A-D7). In other instances, the size of the judicial district and the location of the court often was the focal point of the petition, memorial, or legislative proposal; typical of these are the committee papers relating to S. 47, 33d Cong. (1853-55) concerning a proposal to divide Ohio into two judicial districts (33A-E6) and an 1819 petition to relocate the Federal court within New Jersey from New Brunswick to Perth Amboy (15A-G6). Another area of judicial administration that produced numerous records is the issue of pay for judges, marshals, court clerks, and jurors. Occasionally a bill proposing a general pay increase (15A-D6) was reported but usually such requests were referred to the committee and received no further attention. For example, a memorial signed on December 23, 1839, by members of the Illinois State bar, including a young Springfield lawyer named Abraham Lincoln, urged that the salary of the district judge be increased, but no bill was introduced (26A-G8.1). Other subjects relating to the administration of the Federal judiciary include reducing the cost of proceedings in the admiralty court (29A-D7, 32A-H9.2) and reorganizing the judiciary of the District of Columbia (31A-H8.3, 33A-H9.2).
13.13 In the first half of the 19th century, certain Territorial and statehood matters, such as boundary disputes, were referred to the committee. The records also include a certified copy of the 1833 South Carolina nullification ordinance declaring the so-called Force Bill, which was submitted to the Senate in 1834, null and void; 3 months after it was referred, the Judiciary Committee discharged it (23A-G7.1). The records also include memorials of residents of western Pennsylvania who opposed construction of a bridge at Wheeling because it obstructed navigation of the Ohio River (32A-H9.3). Among the States involved in boundary disputes and other matters that were brought before the committee are Arkansas (16A-G7, 20A-G8.2), Florida (18A-G7, 19A-G8, 21A-G9.2, 27A-G8.1), Georgia (20A-D7, 21A-G9.2), Illinois and Indiana (16A-G7), Kentucky and Tennessee (15A-G6), Michigan (19A-G8, 20A-G8.2, 21A-G9.2, 23A-D8, 24A-D4), Minnesota (35A-E6), Mississippi (19A-G8, 20A-G8.2), Missouri (16A-G7, 24A-D8), and Ohio (23A-D8, 24A-D8). A number of the committee reports and petitions, memorials, and resolutions of state legislatures on these subjects have been published in the Territorial Papers of the United States. A somewhat different matter relating to Territorial status was brought up by a "memorial of the constituted authorities of the City of Nauvoo [IL], praying to be allowed a territorial form of government." Signed December 21, 1843, by Mormon leader and Nauvoo Mayor Joseph Smith and other leaders such as Brigham Young, the memorial includes an account of their experiences and a copy of the city charter of Nauvoo. The memorial was referred to the committee April 5, 1844 (28A-G7.2).
13.14 Many claims for relief or for compensation or indemnification for damages resulting from actions of the Federal Government were referred to the Judiciary Committee during this period and records of such claims are found in all records series. Among petitions and memorials referred to the Judiciary Committee, those related to claims have been rearranged into alphabetical order for certain Congresses (20A-G8, 21A-G9, 22A-G8, 23A-G7, 24A-G7.1, 30A-H0, 33A-H9). One of the principal claims referred to the committee stemmed from the Yazoo land fraud of 1795, which involved speculation in millions of acres of what later became Mississippi and Alabama, and the $4.2 million settlement enacted by Congress in 1814 to compensate claimants. Despite this settlement, representatives of the New England Mississippi Land Company continued to press their claim with the Senate. Records relating to this claim are found under the company name or under the names of the following individuals: Henry Gardner, Ebenezer Oliver, George Wilson, and Thomas L. Winthrop (18A-D8, 19A-D8, 19A-G8, 20A-D7, 21A-D8, 21A-G9, 23A-D8, 26A-D7).
13.15 Other claims referred to the Judiciary Committee concerned defaults of surety bonds for individuals, such as revenue collectors and others who handled Government funds and who petitioned for relief (all series for most Congresses in this period), and claims arising from events of the War of 1812 (16A-D7, 16A-G7, 17A-D7, 17A-G7, 18A-G7). A few claims concern prominent individuals such as Andrew Jackson, whose claim was based on his military service in the War of 1812 (27A-D7, 27A-G8.1, 28A-G7.2), and Amos Kendall, Postmaster General during the Jackson administration, who sought relief from a lawsuit arising from actions taken during his tenure (27A-G8.1).
13.16 Concern over uniform rules of naturalization dates from the period before 1820 (16A-D7, 18A-G7) but became more intense from the late 1830's through 1850's. A group called the Native American Association of Washington petitioned the Senate "to prevent the influx of paupers and convicts into the United States" (25A-G9.1). Committee papers of the 28th Congress (1843-45) contain a file relating to the modification of naturalization laws that includes depositions from district court judges and statements from immigrants concerning fraudulent naturalizations and election violations (28A-D7). In the early 1850's, petitions seeking passage of a "capitation" or head tax on immigrants to fund charities appear in the records of the committee (31A-H8.3, 33A-H9.2).
13.17 Even more of an issue than naturalization laws were bankruptcy laws. The petitions and memorials asking for a national bankruptcy law are among the oldest records referred to the committee (14A-G5, 15A-G6, 16A-G7). Such records appear periodically, not surprisingly during and after a period of national financial crisis such as the depression of 1837 (26A-G8, 27A-G8) and again on the eve of the Civil War (35A-H7, 36A-H7). At these times, the Senate received many petitions and memorials on the subject of bankruptcy law, most of which were tabled. (For a description, see tabled petitions and memorials.) Some of the petitions and memorials note that each State had different laws with respect to bankruptcy and that this situation obstructed interstate commerce. Closely related to this issue was the status of insolvent debtors. Petitions seeking relief for them (18A-G7, 21A-G9.2) and a draft bill with related correspondence of Daniel Webster (30A-E3) also appear in records of this period.
13.18 Patent and copyright law is also documented in the records of the committee. Until 1837, when the Committee on Patents was established by the Senate, the Judiciary Committee received petitions and memorials, sometimes accompanied by illustrations, and reported bills relating to specific requests for patent extensions (16A-D7, 17A-D8, 20A-G8.1, 21A-D8, 21A-G9.1, 22A-G8.1, 24A-G7) and recognition of individual copyrights (18A-G7, 20A-G8.1, 25A-G9). The committee papers of the 22d Congress contain a copy of The Patentee's Manual by William Elliott, which lists all patents issued between 1790 and 1830 and provides other information useful to inventors (22A-D7). There are also a few petitions seeking an international copyright law (25A-G9); one of these was submitted by author Washington Irving and others (27A-G8.1).
13.19 The records also concern the subject of slavery and the status of free black Americans. Among the records of the committee are petitions protesting the admission of Missouri to the Union (16A-F7); petitions seeking gradual abolition of slavery in the District of Columbia (20A-G8.2); numerous petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures concerning the fugitive slave law (30A-H8.1, 31A-H8.3, 33A-H9.1); and memorials calling for enforcement of laws suppressing the African slave trade (26A-G8.1, 36A-H7.1). A memorial of citizens of Winnebago County, IL, requested that two slaves sold to satisfy a judgment of the United States be emancipated, the money refunded to the purchaser, and that all sales of that type of property be prohibited (30A-H8.1). In separate matters, U.S. marshals (in Alabama and the Southern District of Ohio, respectively) petitioned for reimbursement for money expended in the care of captured African slaves (28A-G7.2) and indemnification for losses relating to the prosecution of fugitive slave cases (36A-H7.1). A few records relate to the status of free black Americans. A memorial of "free colored citizens of New York" asked that the 1840 census returns be examined and corrected and an "Office of Registration be established in Washington." This memorial is accompanied by a list of towns for which official census returns show a number of "colored insane" but no "colored citizens" (28A-G7.2). Another memorial of residents of Ipswich, MA, dated 1843, asked that the rights of "colored seamen" who are U.S. citizens be preserved (27A-G8.1).
13.20 There are also resolutions and a report relating to the conduct of national elections, beginning in 1821 with two Senate resolutions. One asked for a report on "whether any, and if any what, provisions are necessary or proper to be made by law to meet contingencies which may arise from unlawful, disputed, or doubtful votes"; the other on whether the act of March 2, 1792, relating to the election of President and Vice President in case either office were vacant needed amendment. The committee reported that further legislation on each matter was "inexpedient" (16A-D7). There are also a report on a bill introduced in the 25th Congress (1837-39) to prevent interference of Federal officials in elections (25A-D8) and resolutions of the State legislatures of Vermont and Rhode Island recommending establishment of a fixed date for election of the Presidential and Vice-Presidential electors (27A-G8.1). When the General Assembly of the State of Missouri in 1829 forwarded to the Senate its resolution for an amendment to the Constitution to provide for the direct election of the President and Vice President, the Senate appointed a select committee to consider it (21A-G20).
13.21 During this period and until 1871, when the Committee on Privileges and Elections was established, the Judiciary Committee also had jurisdiction over the questions of credentials of Senators and contested Senate elections. Most of the records on these matters are printed and found in the committee papers. They concern the following Senators: Ambrose H. Sevier of Arkansas (24A-D8), Simon Cameron of Pennsylvania (34A-E6, 34A-H9), James Harlan of Iowa (34A-E9), Lyman Trumbull of Illinois (34A-E6), Graham N. Fitch and Jesse D. Bright of Indiana (34A-F6, 35A-E6), and Joseph Lane of Oregon (35A-E6).
13.22 The committee also had jurisdiction over publication of certain legal documents and sources. Memorials relating to the publication of U.S. laws (15A-G6), domestic state papers (15A-G6), and reports of decisions of the Supreme Court (28A-G7.2, 32A-H9.4) were referred to the committee. When John Bioren and Edward deKrafft sent in 1820 a memorial to the Senate asking for legislation subsidizing publication of the "Journals of the Old Congress," the committee reported that it "cannot perceive that it is at all necessary or expedient" to publish the journal (16A-D7). In 1821, in response to a Senate resolution asking for an inquiry as to whether the Senate Journal should be republished because the Senate's printed volumes were burned when the British attacked the Capitol in August 1814, the committee reported that it was "inexpedient" to do so (16A-D7).
13.23 There are many other interesting records that do not fit into the above categories. Among these is a memorial from the Society for Reformation of Juvenile Delinquency requesting title to U.S.-owned land in New York City (22A-G8.2); the original report on the Presidential message on the bequest of James Smithson, which led to the establishment of the Smithsonian Institution (24A-D8); two memorials signed by leaders of the Mormons concerning their expulsion from Jackson County, MO, in 1833, one of which, dated 1844, contains the names of 3,419 church members, and a related committee report (26A-D7, 26A-G8.1, 28A-G7.2); an 1856 memorial of W. Brown and others of Kansas, including radical abolitionist John Brown, relating to their imprisonment for treason (34A-H9); a petition of F. B. Sanborn and related papers, in connection with his testimony before the Senate Select Committee to Inquire into the Facts of the Recent Invasion and Seizure of the United States Armory at Harpers Ferry (36A-E7, 36A-H7.2); and printed memorials of the Magnetic Telegraph Company and the New England Union Telegraph Company calling for a law to prevent combination and monopolies in the telegraph business, with the related reply of the American Telegraph Company (35A-H7).
13.24 The records of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1861-1901 (54 ft.), consist of committee papers (11 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures referred to the committee (38 ft.); minutes of committee meetings, 1865-1907 (6 vols., 5 in.), except for the period March 1867-March 1875; legislative dockets, 1861-96 (21 vols., 2 ft.); executive dockets, 1865-1901 (15 vols., 2 ft.), except for a missing volume for the 42d Congress (1871-73); legislative calendars, 1895-1901 (3 vols., 1 in.); press copies of letters sent, March 13, 1885-April 12, 1893 (2 vols., 3 in.); and a register of visitors and letters received ("record book"), 1887-89 (1 vol., 1 in.). The records are arranged by Congress, although some of the bound volumes contain records of more than one session or Congress. The committee papers relating to specific bills and resolutions are arranged for each Congress by bill or resolution number and other documents in the series are arranged chronologically or are unarranged. The series contains printed copies of bills and amendments and supporting material, such as correspondence and communications from executive agencies. Petitions and memorials are arranged for each Congress either by specific subject, if the number of items so warrants, and thereunder chronologically by date referred, or chronologically by date referred. Minutes of committee meetings contain brief notes such as the names of members attending the meeting and the items discussed. The dockets, legislative and executive, serve as registers of legislative items and nominations respectively, and document all committee actions taken on each item of business. The legislative calendars are printed at the end of a session or Congress and contain information similar to that found in legislative dockets. The other volumes are explained by their titles.
13.25 The records for this period document numerous subjects; some of them, such as administration of the judiciary, bankruptcy and naturalization laws, certain claims, and, until 1871, contested elections, had concerned the committee before the war, while others, such as civil rights, resulted from the aftermath of the Civil War. In this period, there also appears to be greater emphasis on broader economic issues and social reforms.
13.26 Records of the Judiciary Committee during each Congress document in many ways enforcement of laws and administration of the Federal courts. The committee papers contain legislative case files and related correspondence about such matters as the treatment of Federal prisoners (44A-E8), salaries of Federal judges (48A-E12), creation of a national bureau of criminal investigation (56A-F18), and suppression of train robbery in the Territories (56A-F18). The case file on S. 2729, 52d Cong., a bill to amend the act of 1891 establishing a circuit court of appeals, contains President Benjamin Harrison's veto message on the bill (52A-F14). This series also contains individual letters and executive agency reports and communications that illustrate the realities of law enforcement and judicial administration. For example, the records include an 1879 letter to Senator Alvin Saunders of Nebraska (who was not a member of the committee) from a constituent describing horse thieves stealing from Indians in that State (45A-E11); an 1882 message from the Territorial Governor of Arizona reporting on the subject of "lawlessness on the frontier requiring extraordinary means to suppress it" (47A-E11); and a letter (in the file on S. 503, 49th Cong.) from William J. Galbraith, Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the Montana Territory, to Montana delegate J.R. Toole, relating to the condition of the court in 1885 (49A-E14). A bill, H.R. 9014, 51st Cong. (1889-91) to establish an intermediate court (circuit court of appeals) to relieve the Supreme Court, is well documented by an original transcript of a hearing, February 13, 1890, and other committee papers (51A-F16) and related petitions and memorials (51A-J14.3). Other petitions and memorials concern establishment of a probate court in the District of Columbia (41A-H10.2) and a U.S. district court in Los Angeles (49A-H13.1), and also include a complaint of the U.S. attorney for the Western District of Texas asserting various improprieties in judicial behavior and court operations (49A-H13.1).
13.27 During the Civil War, war-related matters requiring congressional oversight were generally referred to the Joint Committee on the Conduct of the War. However, the Judiciary Committee continued to receive many antislavery petitions until the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, including several that were signed by thousands of individuals (37A-H8.1, 38A-H8.2 [oversize, 5 ft.]). Others supported Lincoln's conduct of the war (37A-H8.2) or opposed his plans for reconstruction (38A-H8.2). Documenting some of the extraordinary actions taken against civilians are a memorial of the mayor, city council, and police commissioners of Baltimore protesting their imprisonment at Ft. McHenry by military authorities, and others relating to the confiscation of rebel property (37A-H8.2). There are also memorials relating to the removal of Senator Jesse D. Bright of Indiana from his elective office because he had recognized Jefferson Davis as "President of the Confederacy" (37A-H8.2).
13.28 The end of the war and the beginning of Reconstruction brought forth a new set of issues requiring the attention of the committee. Petitioners and memorialists sought a speedy trial of Jefferson Davis (39A-H8.2); removal of political disabilities (39A-H8, 40A-H10.2, 43A-H11.1, 44A-H10.3, 45A-H10.2, 46A-H11.1, 47A-H13.2, 48A-H13.2, 49A-H13.1); and readmission of Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas to the Union (40A-H10.4, 43A-H11.3). An example of the removal of political disabilities cases are records relating to prominent Confederate military figure Maj. Gen. Fitzhugh Lee, nephew of Robert E. Lee, who later served as Governor of Virginia (1886-90) and consul general in Havana during the Spanish-American War (43A-H11.1). The records also include a letter transmitting a copy of proceedings of the Texas Legislature ratifying the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments in 1870 (41A-H10).
13.29 Many claims also resulted from the events of the Civil War. Most notable of these were the so-called Alabama claims, a generic term for all British-American claims since 1853 but mainly those revolving around damage done to U.S. commercial shipping by the Confederate vessels Alabama, Shenandoah, and Florida, which were either built or armed by the British during the Civil War. Following the Treaty of Washington (1871), a tribunal was established in Geneva to adjudicate the claims, many of which were also referred to the Judiciary Committee (42A-H11.5, 43A-H11.2, 44A-E8, 44A-H10.2, 46A-E11, 46A-H11.3, 47A-H13.2).
13.30 There are records relating to several contested elections and the questioned validity of credentials of Senators during the Civil War and Reconstruction periods. These include the contested elections between James H. Lane and Frederic P. Stanton of Kansas (37A-E6) and Morgan C. Hamilton and J.W. Flanagan of Texas (41A-H10.2); the unsuccessful attempt by Louisiana to seat Charles Smith and R. King Cutler, who had been elected Senators by the State government established under the 1864 convention (38A-H8.2); and the credentials of William M. Fishback and Elisha Baxter of Arkansas (38A-H6) and John P. Stockton of New Jersey (39A-E6). After the establishment of the Committee on Privileges and Elections in 1871, the Judiciary Committee occasionally inquired into election irregularities, such as those in Jackson, MS, in 1888 (50A-F12) and Silver Bow County, MT, in 1890 (51A-F16).
13.31 In addition to records relating to the restoration of political rights of former Confederates, there are many other records of the committee for these years relating to civil and political rights of blacks and women. There are numerous petitions favoring the 14th and 15th Amendments and their subsequent enforcement (39A-H8, 40A-H10.2, 44A-H11.5) and others protesting specific infringements of the rights guaranteed by the amendments. Among these are two from Georgia: one protests the expulsion of black members of the Georgia Legislature (40A-H10.2), and the other, from the Republican members of the legislature, asks for a civil rights bill and laws to break up Ku Klux activities (42A-H11.5). Similar petitions from black citizens of Indiana (43A-H11.3), Maryland (41A-H10.2), and Ohio (41A-H10.2) are also present. Memorials recommending additional civil rights legislation or enforcement of existing laws continued after the end of Reconstruction (45A-H10.2, 48A-H13.2, 55A-J18.5). There are a few petitions and memorials supporting antilynching laws (54A-J19.3, 56A-J21.2), including one from Frederick Douglass (52A-J14.4). Among the committee papers, a detailed description of racial practices in Louisiana at the end of the 19th century is found in the correspondence of Dr. L.A. Martinet of New Orleans, who wrote the committee in 1898 to protest the exclusion of blacks from juries and other Jim Crow practices (55A-F15).
13.32 Records relating to women's rights generally concern voting, although the language of many petitions and memorials, dating from the late 1860's through the late 1870's, is frequently more general. Leading suffragettes, including Lucretia Mott, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucy Stone, and Susan B. Anthony, are among the signers of these documents (40A-H10.3, 41A-H10, 41A-H10.1, 42A-H11.4, 43A-H11.1, 43A-H11.3, 46A-H11.1, 46A-H11.2). There are a few additional petitions concerning woman suffrage in the mid-and-late 1890's (54A-J19.3, 56A-J21.2) but by this time, most such documents were referred to the Select (and later standing) Committee on Woman Suffrage, 1882-1921 (see also the description in Chapter 18 para. 18.42-43). The records of the Judiciary Committee also include the original petition of Susan B. Anthony praying for remission of a fine levied against her for voting in the Presidential election of 1872 (43A-H11.3); an original memorial of Victoria C. Woodhull, 1872 Presidential candidate of the Equal Rights Party, advocating woman suffrage (41A-H10.1); and a petition of attorney Belva A. Lockwood, praying that any woman otherwise qualified be permitted to practice law in any U.S. court (43A-H11.3). Among the committee papers is the "argument" of Isabella Beecher Hooker on woman suffrage, delivered at the National Woman Suffrage Convention in 1871 (42A-E9) and an original hearing transcript of testimony of woman suffrage delegates, January 23, 1882 (47A-E11).
13.33 Bills, petitions, and memorials relating to bankruptcy and immigration laws continued to be referred to the committee. The records contain legislative case files on bills proposing amendments to the 1867 bankruptcy act (42A-E9, 44A-E9), and petitions and memorials, first for what became the 1867 act, and later for amendment of it (37th-46th Congresses); in the 1890's, many called for enactment of the Torrey bankruptcy bill (51st-55th Congresses). A smaller number of memorials proposed constitutional amendments or amending existing laws to restrict immigration from China (42A-H11.5, 52A-J14.4), opposed any amendment of the laws to allow a foreign-born President (42A-H11.5), and sought amendment of naturalization laws to restrict citizenship (52A-J14) and to restrict rights of aliens to vote (53A-J18.1, 54A-J19.3) and to own real property (55A-J18.5). After 1889, most matters relating to immigration and naturalization were referred to the standing Committee on Immigration.
13.34 Several other economic issues and viewpoints are represented in the records of the committee. Bricklayers and masons urged the Senate to prohibit employment of aliens on all Government projects (51A-J14.4). Other unionists urged passage of S. 35, 55th Cong., to stem the abuse of the writ of injunction against unions (55A-J18), and supported legislation to enact stiffer penalties for violations of the 8-hour law (55A-J18.5). Farmers opposed options and futures trading in commodities and to this end petitioned for passage of the Washburn bill or similar legislation (51A-J14.5, 52A-J14.2, 53A-J18.5). The committee papers include a small file on S. 1, 51st Cong., the Sherman antitrust bill (51A-F13), and on H.R. 10539, 56th Cong., which proposed amendments to the Sherman Antitrust Act (56A-F18).
13.35 Social reformers petitioned Congress to curb assorted social vices by, for example, enacting legislation to prohibit the sale, manufacture, or importation of intoxicating beverages (42A-H11.3). The American Temperance Committee went so far as to seek a constitutional amendment to provide that no person addicted to intoxicating liquors be eligible to hold Federal office (42A-H11.1). Others sought more adequate punishment of crimes against young girls and women and an increase in the age of consent to 18 (49A-H13, 50A-J13.1). On the subject of marriage, the committee received petitions for enactment of uniform divorce laws (49A-H13.1, 55A-J18.5) and enforcement of antipolygamy laws (45A-H10.1, 47A-H13.1, 56A-J21.1). Under S. Res. 7, 56th Cong., the Judiciary Committee conducted an inquiry into polygamy, for which there are both printed and manuscript records in the committee papers (56A-F18). Antigambling reformers petitioned Congress to suppress lotteries (53A-J18.4) and to prohibit the transmission by mail or interstate commerce of pictures or descriptions of prizefights (54A-J19.3, 55A-J18.3) and other gambling activities (55A-J18.4).
13.36 Certain churches and religious bodies submitted large numbers of petitions for constitutional amendments to acknowledge God as the source of all authority and power in the civil government and to acknowledge the "obligation of the Christian religion" (38A-H8.1, 40A-H10.1, 41A-H10, 42A-H11, 44A-H10, 51A-J14.1, 54A-J19.2). Opponents to church involvement in Government affairs petitioned the Congress to pass a constitutional amendment to guarantee continued separation of church and state (51A-J14.1, 52A-J14.3) and to enact legislation to prohibit appropriations for sectarian purposes (53A-J18, 54A-J19.1).
13.37 The records of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1901-46 (161 ft.), consist of committee papers (16 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies referred to the committee (139 ft.); minutes of committee meetings, 1907-34 and 1941-46 (2 ft., including 10 vols.); legislative calendars, 1901-34 (25 vols., 8 in.); executive dockets, 1901-41 (20 vols., 3 ft.); and a register of letters received on nominations ("memoranda on executive matters"), 1905-06 (1 in., 1 vol.). The committee papers of the early 20th century are significantly different from those of preceding years. There are no legislative case files for bills and resolutions referred to the committee in this series because they are filed with legislative case files of other committees in the series papers supporting specific bills and resolutions. Instead, the committee papers include original and printed executive communications and reports, a few Presidential messages, records of several investigative subcommittees, unbound minutes of committee meetings for the 64th and 65th Congresses (1915-19), correspondence of certain committee chairmen and one subcommittee chairman, a few unprinted transcripts of hearings, and other miscellaneous records. Petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies referred to the committee are arranged by Congress and thereunder by subject for most Congresses. Some correspondence is included in this series because its content is similar to subjects of petitions and memorials or because the letters are addressed to the presiding officer of the Senate. The volume of petitions and memorials is large because of two issues, polygamy (57A-J43, 57 ft.) and prohibition (63A-J46, 72A-J44, 9 ft.). The minutes of committee meetings are bound, except for those of meetings held during the 64th and 65th Congresses (1915-19); as mentioned above, these are filed with the committee papers. The legislative calendars and executive dockets are basically the same as their 19th century counterparts, and there is also a register of letters received on nominations during most of the 59th Congress.
13.38 Committee papers for this period include correspondence of several of the chairmen and one subcommittee chairman. Much of the correspondence is routine and not arranged in a particularly useful manner, but the quality and arrangement of the records varies from chairman to chairman and from Congress to Congress. Correspondence of George F. Hoar of Massachusetts, 1901-04, includes a May 1902 confidential memorandum from Secretary of State John Hay regarding a proposal by Germany and Russia to adopt uniform measures to check anarchism in their respective countries, and a copy of Hoar's reply. Other correspondence, much of it with Federal judges and officials of the Department of Justice, concerns antitrust matters, revision of the laws, laws in the territories of Hawaii and Alaska, and bankruptcy laws (57A-F17, 58A-F15). Correspondence of Clarence D. Clark of Wyoming, 1905-13, concerns the sugar beet industry (62A-F13), and several minor subjects. The committee papers during Clark's tenure also include a transcript of bankruptcy hearings of the Southern Steel Company, Birmingham, AL (60A-F13), and exhibits submitted in connection with H.R. 23625, 62d Cong., an antiinjunction bill, such as testimony relating to the union activities of iron moulders (62A-F13). The series also includes correspondence of Charles S. Deneen of Illinois, 1927-29, chairman of a subcommittee examining the issue of uniform marriage and divorce laws (70A-F12).
13.39 From the 73d through 79th Congress (1933-46), there is a small amount of correspondence of each chairman of the committee. They include Henry F. Ashurst of Arizona, 1933-40 (73A-F15, 74A-F14, 75A-F14, 76A-F17); Frederick Van Nuys of Indiana, 1941-44 (77A-F17, 78A-F17); and Patrick A. (Pat) McCarran of Nevada, 1945-46 (79A-F16).
13.40 The committee papers also include records of several investigative subcommittees. For none of these subcommittees are the records as extensive as those for similar judiciary subcommittees after 1946, but such records are not commonplace generally for committees during this period, and these records are a useful supplement to the printed records.
13.41 Lee S. Overman of North Carolina chaired two of these subcommittees. The first, to investigate lobbying activities to influence legislation pending in the Senate, was authorized under S. Res. 92, 63d Cong. (1913-15). The investigation focused on activities of lobbyists for the sugar beet industry. The records include extracts of printed hearings and summaries of testimony, hearing exhibits, scrapbooks of newspaper clippings, correspondence, and printed matter (63A-F15). (See also correspondence of Chairman Clarence D. Clark [62A-F13].) The second Overman subcommittee for which there are records investigated both brewing and liquor interests and German propaganda during World War I in 1920. The investigation was authorized under S. Res. 307, 66th Cong.. The records include correspondence (including encoded telegrams and related code book), memorandums, copies of testimony at hearings, newspaper clippings, an antiprohibition broadside, and completed questionnaires sent by the subcommittee to newspaper and magazine publishers who ran an advertisement in 1915 entitled "An Appeal to the American People," that was paid for by alleged German agents (66A-F12).
13.42 There are records of two other investigations carried out by subcommittees of the Judiciary Committee during the 66th Congress. One, pursuant to S. Res. 189, concerned lynching and the race riots of 1919. Chaired by William P. Dillingham of Vermont, the records consist of a small amount of correspondence and a number of publications of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the black press, and various organizations (66A-F12). The other investigation, pursuant to S. Res. 439, continued a probe of Russian propaganda efforts; the records include a small amount of correspondence and printed matter (66A-F12).
13.43 There are also small amounts of records of subcommittees investigating lobbying (S. Res. 20, 71st Cong.) under the chairmanship of Thaddeus H. Caraway of Arkansas (71A-F15); the alleged failure to prosecute promptly officers of the Harriman National Bank (S. Res. 35, 73d Cong.) under the chairmanship of Hubert D. Stephens of Mississippi (73A-F15); and certain activities of the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Post Office Department with respect to the implementation of the Municipal Bankruptcy Act in Florida, under the chairmanship of Alexander Wiley of Wisconsin (79A-F16). The last investigation was continued into the 80th Congress by S. Res. 90 and its records include unprinted transcripts of hearings.
13.44 Other unprinted transcripts of hearings found in the committee papers concern an editorial in the Washington Herald critical of Senator Oscar Underwood of Alabama and the Muscle Shoals project, December 18, 1924 (68A-F12); an executive session on the National Prohibition Act, May 7, 1926 (69A-F15); and terms of office and salaries of appointees to the Senate, January 17, 1939 (76A-F13).
13.45 Petitions and memorials referred to the Judiciary Committee illustrate public opinion and the positions of individuals, organizations, and State government representatives with respect to legislation and subjects within the jurisdiction of the committee. Most of these subjects can be categorized into four general areas: Law enforcement and judicial administration, economic issues, civil and political rights, and social reforms.
13.46 The subjects of petitions and memorials relating to law enforcement and judicial administration include suppression of anarchy in the wake of the assassination of President William McKinley in 1901 (57A-J39); creation of a science lab in the Department of Justice for the study of crime (57A-J44); Federal court districts and court terms (58A-J46, 58A-J47, 62A-J53, 63A-J49); salaries of Federal judges (60A-J75); the Crumpacker fraud order bill (59A-J64); the Lindbergh baby kidnapping case (72A-J45); and President Franklin D. Roosevelt's attempt to "pack" the Supreme Court (74A-J22, 75A-J23).
13.47 The broad category of economic issues includes bankruptcy law, immigration restriction, labor conditions, and antitrust law and other matters relating to business practices. The committee received a number of petitions relating to the Federal bankruptcy law just before and for some years after its major revision in 1898 (57A-J41, 58A-J41, 59A-J63, 60A-J71) and then again during the financial hardship of the Great Depression of the 1930's, when the law was amended in 1938 (73A-J33, 75A-J19). Labor unions were frequent petitioners of the Congress, and their communications were referred to the Judiciary Committee on such subjects as exclusion of Chinese immigrants (57A-J42, 59A-J67); various anti-injunction bills (57A-J40, 58A-J39, 59A-J62, 60A-J76, 62A-J51); conditions in western mines (58A-J42, 60A-J77); imprisonment of William D. "Big Bill" Haywood and others in connection with the murder of former Gov. Frank Steunenberg of Idaho (59A-J65); and S. 927, 63d Cong., the Bacon-Barlett bill to exempt labor unions from prosecution under the Sherman Antitrust Act (63A-J43). The committee also received petitions supporting enactment of laws to regulate child labor (67A-J40, 68A-J34).
13.48 In addition, there are petitions supporting stronger antitrust laws (57A-J44, 58A-J40, 60A-J76), particularly H.R. 15657, 63d Cong., the Clayton bill (63A-J44); petitions opposing trading in options and futures (60A-J74) and the use of trading stamps by grocers (57A-J44); and petitions from employees of the West Virginia Coke and Coal Company opposing the dissolution of the U.S. Steel Corporation in 1913 (63A-J51).
13.49 A number of petitions and memorials submitted by blacks, women, and certain political minorities addressed the needs of these groups for legislation or enforcement of existing legislation to protect their civil and political rights. The subjects of these records include Negro voting rights in the South (57A-J44); antilynching laws (59A-J69, 66A-J38, 67A-J39, 75A-J18, 76A-J18.1); racial intermarriage laws (62A-J53); an equal rights amendment for women (68A-J35, 71A-J43, 75A-J20); and amnesty for political prisoners, such as Eugene V. Debs, who opposed U.S. participation in World War I (66A-J40, 67A-J44), and Marcus Garvey, the leader of a black separatist movement in the 1920's, who was imprisoned by the Federal Government for mail fraud (69A-J25). On the other side of the political spectrum, supporters for the investigations of the House Un-American Activities Committee communicated their approval by memorializing the Senate (76A-J18.2).
13.50 Well over half of all petitions and memorials referred to the committee concern social reforms. From the 57th to the 72d Congress (1901-33), there are hundreds of petitions favoring or opposing prohibition of the manufacture, sale, and distribution of intoxicating liquors, and after the ratification of the 18th Amendment, others favoring or opposing modification to allow commerce in beer and light wine. Polygamy was another moral issue that generated a huge number of petitions from individuals and religious groups seeking its prohibition by constitutional amendment, especially from the 57th to the 67th Congress (1901-21). Among the other social reforms and issues included as subjects of these records are use of telegraph and telephone for interstate gambling (57A-J44, 58A-J47, 60A-J70, 61A-J57); uniform marriage and divorce laws (67A-J45); and the importation, distribution, and sale of contraceptive literature and instruments (71A-J43).
13.51 Two Senate special committees for which the National Archives has records were established to study matters that came under the jurisdiction of the Judiciary Committee: the Special Committee to Investigate Bankruptcy and Receivership Proceedings in U.S. Courts, 1933-36 (14 ft.) and the Special Committee on Court Reorganization and Judicial Procedure, 1937-39 (2 in.).
13.52 The records of the Committee on the Judiciary, 1947-68 (1,990 ft.), are significantly different from those of previous years because the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 had a major impact on its duties and jurisdiction. The act authorized each committee to hire four permanent professional staff; this authority set the precedent for hiring, under separate authority, additional attorneys, investigators, economists, and legislative specialists to conduct various investigations. Another provision of the act reduced the number of committees; the standing Committee on Patents, the Committee on Immigration and Naturalization, and the Committee on Claims were eliminated and their jurisdictions were assigned to the Judiciary Committee. The act also removed several matters from the purview of the committee, including those relating to executive branch reorganization (assigned to the Committee on Expenditures in Executive Departments), convict labor (assigned to the Committee on Labor and Public Welfare), and the American National Red Cross (assigned to the Committee on Foreign Relations).
13.53 The act also defined committee jurisdictions in writing for the first time. According to Senate Rule XXV as modified by the 1946 act, the Judiciary Committee had jurisdiction over civil and criminal judicial proceedings; constitutional amendments; Federal courts and judges; local courts in territories and possessions; national penitentiaries; protection of trade and commerce against unlawful restraints and monopolies; holidays and celebrations; bankruptcy, mutiny, espionage, and counterfeiting; State and territorial boundaries; meetings of Congress, attendance of Members, and their acceptance of incompatible offices; civil liberties; patents, copyrights, and trademarks; the Patent Office; immigration and naturalization; apportionment of Representatives; measures relating to claims against the United States; and interstate compacts. (The 1977 changes in Rule XXV affecting the Judiciary Committee transferred jurisdiction over meetings of Congress, attendance of Members, and acceptance of incompatible offices to the Committee on Rules and Administration, and gave the Judiciary Committee shared jurisdiction with the Committee on Government Affairs over Government information.)
13.54 Other post-1946 changes in the records include the presence of case files on nominees to the Federal courts and legal officers of the Government (Attorney General, Solicitor General, U.S. attorneys, etc.); a separate series of legislative case files on bills and resolutions referred to the committee, formerly part of the series papers relating to specific bills and resolutions; and extensive documentation of many, but not all, subcommittees. The result of these changes is a huge growth in the volume of records.
13.55 The principal series documenting the legislative activities of the committee are legislative case files ("accompanying papers"), 1947-68 (421 ft.). For each bill and resolution referred to the committee during a Congress, there is a file that may contain any or all of the following types of records: printed copies of bills, amendments, reports, hearings, and committee prints; transcripts of printed and unprinted hearings; correspondence, both official evaluations and recommendations on the bills and general correspondence from interested organizations, groups, and individuals; staff memorandums analyzing bills; and related reference matter.
13.56 The contents of private claim and immigration bill files are somewhat different. Private claims have detailed descriptions of the basis of the claim, the itemization of the award, and the circumstances requiring that the bill be introduced. Immigration bills typically contain reports from the Immigration and Naturalization Service and Department of State and affidavits from or about individuals threatened with deportation because they entered the United States illegally.
13.57 For the 80th-83d Congresses (1947-54), the legislative case files also document certain investigations pursuant to simple resolutions; for example, the committee's antitrust investigation of the high cost of eyeglasses under S. Res. 204, 81st Cong., is included in this series. The records include unprinted transcripts of hearings, correspondence, staff memorandums and notes, and related printed matter. Among other, more significant investigations documented in this series is the 1952 inquiry, pursuant to S. Res. 306, 83d Cong., into the legal authority of the President to seize and operate certain steel plants and facilities instigated by President Truman's takeover of Youngstown Sheet and Tube Company, and the 1954 investigation, pursuant to S. Res. 174, 83d Cong., of certain activities of charitable and private welfare organizations. The series is arranged by Congress, thereunder by type of bill or resolution, and within each category by bill or resolution number.
13.58 Closely related to the legislative case files are legislative proposals, 1955-66 (3 ft.). This series contains agency proposals for legislation and some draft bills, accompanied by comment forms used by the committee staff. The records are arranged by Congress and thereunder by comment form number roughly in chronological order. There are no such records for the 85th Congress (1957-58). Apparently, most, if not all, of these proposals were never introduced.
13.59 Also referred to the committee are Presidential messages and executive communications ("messages, communications, and reports"), 1947-68 (80 ft.). These records consist of reports of Federal agencies regarding their compliance with the Federal Torts Claims Act of 1948, annual financial reports of Federally-chartered organizations, and reports of the Federal Judicial Conference and the Department of Justice. In addition, there are reports and related records concerning torts claims against the Post Office Department, 1947-59; special, so-called Attorney General reports on certain classes of immigrants, 1951-56, and on claims of Japanese-Americans evacuated under Executive Order 9066, 1953-58; dockets of the Motor Carrier Claims Commission, 1952-56; summaries of tort claims settled by the Post Office Department and the military services, 1948-60; and records relating to claims against the Army for the Texas City disaster of 1947, 1955-62. This series is arranged by Congress, thereunder by date referred, except for the above-mentioned special files, which have various arrangements or are unarranged.
13.60 Petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies, 1947-68 (8 ft.), consist largely of resolutions of State legislatures; however, for the 83d Congress these include letters, mostly from Puerto Rican school children, concerning the shooting incident in the House of Representatives by Puerto Rican nationalists. There are separate files for records relating to Presidential disability and succession in the 89th and 90th Congresses (1965-68). The largest file contains an estimated 50,000 signatures supporting a John Birch Society-sponsored resolution relating to cutting off "aid and comfort to our Communist enemies." The series is arranged by Congress and thereunder chronologically by date of referral, except for the above-mentioned separate files.
13.61 Unpublished transcripts of either executive or public hearings for the full committee are generally found in the legislative case file or nomination file to which they relate or in subcommittee records. A few unprinted transcripts of hearings, 1947-54 (1 ft.), for the 80th, 82d, and 83d Congresses have been maintained separately; most of the hearings were held by various subcommittees and some were held in executive session.
13.62 Records of committee meetings are contained in executive session minutes and other records relating to committee meetings, 1947-68 (10 ft.), and include original minutes or transcripts of committee meetings (beginning in 1965), agenda, staff notes, and attendance records. A second set composed of duplicate copies, 1955-66, also contains occasionally minutes of subcommittee meetings.
13.63 The committee reviews all nominations of judges to the Federal courts, the Attorney General, the Solicitor General, Director of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, U.S. attorneys, and U.S. marshals. A special nominations subcommittee makes a preliminary review of the nominee's qualifications, except for nominees for the U.S. Court of Customs and Patents Appeals, which are reviewed by the Subcommittee on Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights. Records relating to nominations, 1947-68 (81 ft.), may consist of transcripts of nomination hearings, some of which were held in executive session; correspondence with the American Bar Association and State bar associations concerning the qualifications of the nominee; correspondence with the general public; biographical sketches; notices; nomination reference and report forms; and for more controversial nominees, investigative records. In general, there is less documentation relating to nominees for U.S. attorney and U.S. marshal positions. Among the larger, more extensive or more notable files are those relating to Solicitor General nominee Philip Perlman (80th Cong.); Attorney General nominee James P. McGranery (82d Cong.); U.S. District Court nominees Willis W. Ritter (Utah, 81st Cong.), Freida Hennock (New York, 82d Cong.), and Miles Lord (Minnesota, 89th Cong.); Court of Appeals nominees Warren E. Burger and Simon E. Sobeloff (84th Cong.), John M. Wisdom (85th Cong.), Thurgood Marshall (87th Cong.), and Collins J. Seitz (89th Cong.); and Supreme Court Justice and Chief Justice nominees Earl Warren (83d Cong.), John Marshall Harlan (84th Cong.), William J. Brennan (85th Cong.), and Abe Fortas (89th and 90th Congresses).
13.64 Three correspondence files have been transferred by the committee. The first, the correspondence of Patrick (Pat) McCarran, 1947-48 (7 in.), is arranged alphabetically by name of subcommittee and consists of correspondence and printed material relating to claims, constitutional amendments, export control, immigration and naturalization, improvement of judicial machinery, nominations, and the tidelands controversy. A more comprehensive series, general correspondence, 1955-62 (22 ft.), consists of four subseries: Correspondence arranged by subject (15 ft.); alphabetical reading file (3 ft.); correspondence with committee members (1 ft.); and correspondence with subcommittees, 1955-60 (3 ft.), arranged alphabetically by name of subcommittee. For the 88th-90th Congress, there is a small amount of miscellaneous correspondence, 1963-68 (11 in.), which is both fragmentary and routine.
13.65 Other records of the committee include papers relating to a study of interstate compacts, 1950-70 (4 ft.), and copies of reports and other records, maintained by Walter Sheridan, relating to radiation and public health, c. 1960-64 (4 ft.). Sheridan was a political associate of the Kennedy brothers, and served as an investigator for the Antitrust and Monopoly Subcommittee (1977-78) and as a professional staff member of the full committee (1979-80). It is unclear how Sheridan's files are connected to the work of the committee.
13.66 Records of the full committee include legislative case files, legislative proposals, executive communications, petitions, transcripts of executive communications, petitions, transcripts of executive sessions, oversight records maintained by the minority (Democratic) staff (97th-98th Congresses only), and nomination files. There are also records of the committee's investigation of Robert Vesco (25 ft.). Most of the records, however, are from subcommittees, including the following: Antitrust and Monopoly (425 ft.); Administrative Practice and Procedure (36 ft.); Citizens and Shareholders Rights and Remedies (3 ft.); Constitutional Rights; the Constitution (93 ft.); Courts (36 ft.); Criminal Laws and Procedures (60 ft.); Immigration and Naturalization (20 ft.); Internal Security; To Investigate Activities of Individuals Representing the Interests of Foreign Governments-the Billy Carter-Libya Investigation (30 ft.); Juvenile Delinquency (45 ft.); National Penitentiaries (4 ft.); Patents, Copyrights, Trademarks (54 ft.); Refugees and Escapees (67 ft.); Regulatory Reform (1 ft.); Security and Terrorism (26 ft.); and Separation of Powers (48 ft.).
13.67 Since 1947, the Committee on the Judiciary has made extensive use of subcommittees to accomplish its legislative, investigative, and oversight functions. Between 1947 and 1977, when the committee system was reformed and the number of subcommittees limited, the committee had as many as 15 standing and special subcommittees during a particular Congress. While some subcommittees have had limited functions, small or no staffs, and have transferred no records of their own, others, particularly those with active investigations, have had large staffs of lawyers, investigators, and other professional staff members and generated large volumes of records. A few have even produced or collected more records in less than 30 years than most of the full standing committees through their entire existence. The following pages describe those subcommittees for which pre-1969 records have been retired to the National Archives. In most instances, the descriptions of records will be confined to those created prior to 1969, although under the filing practices of several of the subcommittees, these records may be interspersed with records created as recently as 1977. Researchers should consult the correspondence and the unprinted transcripts of hearings maintained by the full committee, which also contain records related to subcommittees; for some subcommittees, these two full committee series contain the only known manuscript records.
13.68 Two subcommittees that were established in 1947 to take the place of standing committees that were terminated by the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946 are the Subcommittee on Immigration and Naturalization and the Subcommittee on Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights.
- Subcommittee on Immigration and Naturalization
- Subcommittee on Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights
- Senate Internal Security Subcommittee
- Special Subcommittee on the Trading with the Enemy Act
- Special Subcommittee on the Emigration of Refugees and Escapees
- Special Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency
- Subcommittee on Antitrust and Monopoly
- Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights
- Special Subcommittee on Improvement of the Federal Criminal Code
- Subcommittee on Administrative Practice and Procedure
- Subcommittee on Criminal Laws and Procedures
13.69 The records, 1947-66 (54 ft.), of the subcommittee consist of transcripts of executive sessions, 1947-51; correspondence, 1948-51, 1953-60, and 1965-66, concerning revisions of the McCarran-Walter Act of 1952, especially S. 1206, 84th Cong., the Joint Committee on Immigration and Naturalization Policy, 1953-54; and other matters relating both generally to refugee relief, deportation and suspension of alien seamen, displaced persons, and adoption of children, and to specific cases; copies of outgoing letters and memorandums, 1953-56 and 1965-66; and suspension of deportation case files, 1947-52. Additional transcripts of executive sessions, 1948-51, are in the records of the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee. The chairmen of the subcommittee during these years were Chapman Revercomb of West Virginia (1947-48), Patrick McCarran of Nevada (1949-52), Arthur V. Watkins of Utah (1953-54), Harley Kilgore of West Virginia (1955-56), and James O. Eastland of Mississippi (1956-1968).
13.70 The records, 1955-76 (34 ft.), of the subcommittee document studies made by or for the subcommittee and legislation it considered during the chairmanships of Joseph C. O'Mahoney of Wyoming (1955-60) and John McClellan of Arkansas (1961-68). The Patents Subcommittee was a standing subcommittee, but its earliest records date from the approval of S. Res. 92, 84th Cong. (1955), which provided funds for an examination and review of the administration of the Patent Office and the statutes relating to patents, trademarks, and copyrights. Records of this subcommittee include information sent by various companies to the subcommittee for its 1956 study of compulsory patent licensing relief in antitrust final judgments. Other records include reports on various aspects of patent law and Patent Office administration produced pursuant to S. Res. 55, 85th Cong., and related staff memorandums and correspondence, 1957-63; staff memorandums, correspondence, and reports of various Government agencies concerning Government patent law policy with respect to patents awarded to contractors of the U.S. Government, 1961-68; legislative files for bills introduced in the 89th-90th Congresses, 1965-68; alphabetically arranged outgoing letters, 1955-65; subcommittee budget, personnel, and administrative records, 1955-76; records relating to the President's Commission on the Patent System, 1965-68; transcript of executive session testimony of Admiral Hyman Rickover, June 2, 1961, on the national patent policy; and miscellaneous subject files, correspondence, and printed material.
13.71 Among the largest subcommittee holdings are the records of the Special Subcommittee to Investigate the Administration of the Internal Security Act and Other Internal Security Laws, 1951-77 (547 ft.). More commonly known as the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee (SISS), it was authorized under S. Res. 366, 81st Cong., approved December 21, 1950, to study and investigate (1) the administration, operation, and enforcement of the Internal Security Act of 1950 (Public Law 81-831, also known as the McCarran Act) and other laws relating to espionage, sabotage, and the protection of the internal security of the United States and (2) the extent, nature, and effects of subversive activities in the United States "including, but not limited to, espionage, sabotage, and infiltration of persons who are or may be under the domination of the foreign government or organization controlling the world Communist movement or any movement seeking to overthrow the Government of the United States by force and violence." The resolution also authorized the subcommittee to subpoena witnesses and require the production of documents. Because of the nature of its investigations, the subcommittee is considered by some to be the Senate equivalent to the older House Un-American Activities Committee (HUAC).
13.72 The chairman of the subcommittee in the 82d Congress was Patrick (Pat) McCarran of Nevada (1950-53). William Jenner of Indiana took over during the 83d Congress after the Republicans gained control of the Senate in the 1952 election. When the Democrats regained control in the 84th Congress (1955-56), James O. Eastland of Mississippi became chairman, a position he held until the subcommittee was abolished in 1977.
13.73 The subjects of its investigations during the 1950's include the formulation of U. S. foreign policy in the Far East; the scope of Soviet activity in the United States; subversion in the Federal Government, particularly in the Departments of States and Defense; immigration; the United Nations; youth organizations; the television, radio, and entertainment industry; the telegraph industry; the defense industry; labor unions; and educational organizations. In the 1960's, the investigations were expanded to include civil rights and racial issues, campus disorders, and drug trafficking. The subcommittee published over 400 volumes of hearings and numerous reports, documents, and committee prints.
13.74 The major classes of records of the subcommittee are the investigative and administrative records, and the special collections. There are also several smaller files. The records are described at the series level in the National Archives Catalog. Due to the ongoing nature of the investigations, the investigative files were not maintained either by year or Congress; instead, individual files may contain information accumulated over a period of 20 or more years. It is impractical, therefore, to limit a description of the records of the subcommittee to those through 1968. And although the files were begun in 1951, some contain data that precedes the creation of the subcommittee.
13.75 The investigative records include transcripts of executive session hearings, 1951-75 (31 ft.); records of the investigation of the Institute of Pacific Relations (IPR), c. 1935-52 (13 ft.); personal name files, c. 1951-77, arranged in four subseries (118 ft.); central investigative subject files, c. 1951-77 (143 ft.); country files, c. 1941-77 (27 ft.); miscellaneous investigative subject files, c. 1950-58 (9 ft.); and subcommittee publications, 1951-77 (10 ft.). The personal name files are arranged in four subseries, one of which consists of loose papers rather than dossiers. The individual files often consist of newspaper and magazine clippings only, but many files, especially from the 1950's, contain correspondence, investigative reports, and copies of Government and other documents. The miscellaneous subject files are miscellaneous only because they have not been incorporated into the central subject file.
13.76 The investigation of the Institute of Pacific Relations was the first major investigation initiated by the subcommittee. The IPR was established in 1925 to provide a forum for discussion of Asian problems and relations between Asia and the West. To promote greater knowledge of the Far East, the IPR established a large research program, which was supported financially by grants from the Rockefeller Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation, and other major corporations. While the IPR leadership maintained it was a nonpartisan body, others, including some former members, accused it of supporting the Communist line with respect to its analysis of political developments in the Far East. Some people accused the IPR leadership of spying for the Soviet Union. Owen Lattimore, editor of the IPR journal Pacific Affairs, was especially singled out for criticism.
13.77 To investigate these charges, the SISS took possession of the older files of the IPR, which had been stored at the Lee, Massachusetts farm of E. C. Carter, an IPR trustee. The subcommittee's investigators studied these records for 5 months, then held hearings for nearly 1 year (July 25, 1951-June 20, 1952). The final report of the subcommittee was issued in July 1952 (S. Rpt. 2050, 82d Cong., 2d sess., Serial 11574). The records of the IPR investigation, c. 1935-52 (13 ft.), consist chiefly of an "evaluation of documents file" containing summaries of IPR documents prepared by SISS investigators, arranged for the most part alphabetically by subject. The records also include a witness file consisting of correspondence, statements, and printed matter, and biographical files and summary reports. All of these files are arranged alphabetically by subject name.
13.78 The special collections include the Ralph Van Deman Papers, 1929-52 (62 ft.); the Amerasia Papers, c. 1940-45 (8 ft.); papers relating to the Morgenthau Diary Study, 1953-65 (12 ft.); so-called subversive publications, 1948-70 (34 ft.); and government-issued civil rights publications, 1944-64 (3 ft.).
13.79 Maj. Gen. Ralph H. Van Deman was a former U.S. Army surgeon who became involved in intelligence work while stationed in the Philippines in 1908. During World War I, he headed U.S. Army military intelligence in Washington and was instrumental in organizing volunteer units of civilians such as the American Protective League that watched and reported signs of disloyalty. In 1929 he retired from military service but, with the assistance of the U.S. Army, began the development of a private intelligence service, which collected classified domestic intelligence reports from the U.S. Army and Navy and the FBI, as well as from numerous police departments. He also maintained an extensive network of unnamed informers who infiltrated groups or attended meetings. He regularly reported to the FBI, military intelligence agencies, HUAC, and the un-American activities committee of the California Legislature.
13.80 After Van Deman's death in 1952, his files were split into two collections. The larger of the two was taken over by the U.S. Army for use by Federal agencies for security checks. The smaller collection was given to a private library in San Diego, CA, and used, until 1962, to screen California State job applicants. The records in Army custody were sent to Ft. Holabird, MD, where they were integrated into the U.S. Army Investigative Records Depository, but in 1968, they were removed from this file; the index was reportedly lost or destroyed. The U.S. Army transferred the records to the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee in 1971, during a Judiciary Committee investigation of Army surveillance of civilians.
13.81 The records in the National Archives consist of "R-files," a serially numbered document file (24 ft.) that contains intelligence data from the sources described above but is virtually unusable without the index; miscellaneous investigative files (6 ft.); and a collection (32 ft.) of Communist and Socialist newspapers and tabloids, such as the Western Worker.
13.82 Also relating to the subcommittee's interest in Communist takeover of China are the Amerasia Papers. The Amerasia Papers consist of documents seized by FBI agents on June 6, 1945, in connection with the arrests of six persons, including U.S. Government employees, on espionage charges related to possession of classified Government documents. Amerasia was a journal on Far Eastern affairs, edited by Phillip J. Jaffe and Kate L. Mitchell. Classified documents concerning U.S. policy in China were found in the possession of several defendants. Because the OSS burglarized the office of Amerasia and the homes of several individuals, the evidence was deemed tainted and charges were reduced or dropped.
13.83 Congressional interest in the case continued however. In 1946, a House Judiciary subcommittee chaired by Rep. Samuel F. Hobbs and, in 1950, the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on the Investigation of Loyalty of State Department Employees investigated the Amerasia case. In 1955, the Senate Internal Security Subcommittee asked the Justice Department to deliver the Amerasia materials to them. The records were declassified and in 1956 and 1957, the Justice Department delivered 1,260 documents to the subcommittee. The records are arranged by alphanumeric designations that indicate which agency or agencies were required to declassify the 923 Government documents turned over; the remaining 337 are marked "P" for personal source. The committee print The Amerasia Papers: A Clue to the Catastrophe of China (2 vols., 1970), summarizes the case and reproduces 315 of the documents.
13.84 Another special collection that focuses on China is the subcommittee's collection of files relating to the so-called diaries of Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Franklin D. Roosevelt's Secretary of the Treasury, 1934-45. The records of the Morgenthau Diary Study, 1953-65 (12 ft.), consist largely of copies of portions of memorandums, correspondence, transcripts of meetings, and other records preserved by Secretary Morgenthau in order to document his tenure. The original records are in the custody of the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library in Hyde Park, NY. In 1965, the SISS issued a two volume committee print entitled Morgenthau Diary (China), containing entries from the records at the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library selected to illustrate the implementation of Roosevelt administration policy in China. According to the editor of the publication, the subcommittee wanted to produce a documentary history on the subject and "also indicate the serious problem of unauthorized, uncontrolled and often dangerous power exercised by nonelected officials," specifically Harry Dexter White. White was a major figure in Senator William Jenner's investigation of interlocking subversion in Government departments in 1953. The records also include subject files accumulated by the editors of the volume and copies of subcommittee publications produced as a result of or accumulated during the study.
13.85 The administrative records of the SISS include general correspondence, 1951-68 (25 ft.); legislative case files, 1951-76 (8 ft.); legal precedent and reference file, 1951-76 (5 ft. ); records relating to subpoenas, 1949-75 (2 ft.); personnel records, 1951-76 (2 ft.); and subcommittee financial records, 1951-77 (3 ft.).
13.86 Also found among the SISS files are transcripts of executive session hearings of the Subcommittee on Immigration and Naturalization and the Joint Committee on Immigration and Nationality Policy, 1948-51 (1 ft.), news clipping scrapbooks and clipping files on certain subjects, 1952-65 (7 ft.), and some material of undetermined origin.
13.87 Pursuant to S. Res. 245, 82d Cong., approved January 10, 1952, the Judiciary Committee was authorized to study the administration since December 18, 1941, of the Trading with the Enemy Act of 1917, as amended (40 Stat. 415). The Trading with the Enemy Act empowered the United States to confiscate and sell enemy property. The records, 1952-66 (6 ft.), consist of legislative case files, mainly for amendments to the act that were proposed during the 85th and 86th Congresses; a subject file, largely consisting of publications of or about the Office of the Alien Property Custodian and concerning the legislative history of the act; and administrative records.
13.88 Also in the 82d Congress, pursuant to S. Res. 326, approved June 21, 1952, a special subcommittee was established to study all matters pertaining "to problems in certain European countries created by the flow of escapees and refugees from Communist tyranny," chiefly Hungarians. Later resolutions extended the subcommittee's mandate to include Palestinian Arab, Chinese, Korean, and Armenian refugees also. The subcommittee chair was William Langer of North Dakota, who died November 8, 1959; his successor was John L. McClellan of Arkansas. The records, 1953-60 (7 ft.), consist of "general" files that include correspondence on private relief bills, adoption, refugee, and visa cases; and records relating to the 1955 clash between Edward Corsi, the assistant to the Secretary of State's special advisor on refugee matters, and Scott McLeod, Administrator of the refugee relief program of the State Department. Also included is an unprinted transcript of a hearing, April 1, 1959, on European and Arab refugees. The committee administrative files include travel reports of committee counsel Eleanor C. Guthridge, in addition to subcommittee personnel and other administrative records.
13.89 The Special Subcommittee on Juvenile Delinquency was established on April 27, 1953, with the approval of S. Res. 89, 83d Cong., to investigate the causes of what appeared to be an increased amount of criminal activity by teenagers and to determine what steps the Federal Government might take to combat this trend. The subcommittee was directed to focus on the adequacy of existing laws in dealing with youthful offenders of Federal law, to examine sentences and other correctional actions taken by the Federal courts, and to determine the extent to which juveniles were violating Federal narcotics laws. What began as a specific inquiry for a fixed time period grew during the 83d Congress and succeeding Congresses into a far-reaching investigation extended numerous times by other Senate resolutions. Subjects of the subcommittee's investigations include the relationship between juvenile violence and crime and such media as television and comic books; the effectiveness of the juvenile court system, youth institutions, juvenile community control programs of Government agencies and social welfare organizations, and youth employment programs; juvenile crime and narcotics and nonnarcotic dangerous drugs; exploitation of youth by black market adoption, prostitution, and confidence game rackets; juvenile access to weapons, such as switchblade knives and mail-order firearms, and to pornographic magazines and books; delinquency among American Indians; particular youth-oriented crimes such as auto theft; and the interstate shipment of fireworks, among others.
13.90 The original subcommittee membership included Chairman Robert C. Hendrickson of New Jersey, Estes Kefauver of Tennessee, and William Langer of North Dakota. Shortly thereafter, Thomas C. Hennings, Jr., of Missouri was appointed to the subcommittee. Senator Hendrickson chaired the subcommittee during the 83d Congress (1953-55), Senator Kefauver during the 84th Congress (1955-57), and Senator Hennings during the 85th-86th Congresses (1957-1960). Thomas J. Dodd of Connecticut chaired the subcommittee during the 87th-91st Congresses (1961-71).
13.91 No major legislation was enacted as a direct result of the subcommittee's investigations, although a major effort to regulate the mail-order sales of firearms, S. 1975, 88th Cong., passed the Senate in 1964. The major piece of legislation concerning juvenile delinquency, the Juvenile Delinquency and Youth Offenses Act of 1961 (Public Law 87-274), was sponsored by members of the Committee on Labor and Public Welfare.
13.92 The records, 1953-70 (296 ft.), of the subcommittee consist of public and executive hearing transcripts and hearing exhibits; tape recordings of a few hearings; correspondence and subject files; completed questionnaires sent to juvenile court judges, probation officers, police chiefs, and social workers on a variety of subjects; newspaper clippings; investigative files, some containing police and other confidential reports; subcommittee administrative records; and reference files. Among the last are collections of comic books, especially those thought to be particularly gruesome, violent, or otherwise provocative in subject matter. These include most of the first 12 issues of MAD, edited by William F. Gaines, a witness at the 1954 hearings on comic books. In connection with 1964 hearings on violence and crime on television and their effects on young people, the subcommittee acquired numerous television scripts, particularly from the series, The Alfred Hitchcock Hour and The Untouchables, advertising brochures on upcoming shows, and correspondence, memorandums, and reports of the major networks and independent producers. One particularly detailed file concerned the production of a series entitled Klondike Fever, documenting casting, promotion, advertising, editorial, and technical decisions. Most of the television material dates from 1957 to 1964. There are also extensive reference files of firearms magazines and tabloids.
13.93 The records of the subcommittee are somewhat difficult to use. In the subcommittee's early years, the records were arranged by a subject-numeric files classification system but, apparently as chairmen and staff directors changed, this system was abandoned. While the records on some subjects have been maintained together, many have not. The records are accessible through finding aids made by the National Archives.
13.94 Another subcommittee for which a substantial volume of records has been retained is the standing Subcommittee on Antitrust and Monopoly. The subcommittee was established in 1951 at the beginning of the 82d Congress as a standing Subcommittee on Antitrust and Monopoly Legislation, first chaired by Herbert R. O'Conor of Maryland (1951-52). During this Congress, the subcommittee did not play a major role in the Senate investigation of economic concentration then being undertaken by the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce. In the 83d Congress, however, the subcommittee made a place for itself by pursuing two matters concerning publicly owned electric power. In the 83d Congress, the subcommittee, now chaired by William Langer of North Dakota (1953-54), examined the Department of the Interior's "new power policy"; the hearing concluded with a recommendation to conduct in the next Congress a broader study of the entire power industry. The second matter was the emerging controversy over the so-called Dixon-Yates contract to permit a private utility company to construct a generating plant to supply electricity to Atomic Energy Commission facilities in the Tennessee Valley.
13.95 On March 18, 1955, the Senate approved S. Res. 61, 84th Cong., which authorized money to conduct a full scale inquiry into antitrust policies and monopoly. The general subjects of the study were "bigness" of industry, the economic effects of and current trends toward mergers; and the present laws and their enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice. But instead of targeting the power industry as recommended, the investigators concentrated on business practices in the automobile industry, especially those of the General Motors Corporation; the economic effects of the Robinson-Patman Act of 1936, which prohibited discrimination in manufacturer's prices; and application of antitrust laws to foreign trade and industry. While the full subcommittee investigated these subjects, a three-member panel of the subcommittee, composed of Senators Kefauver, O'Mahoney, and Langer, continued hearings and issued, as a committee print, a highly critical "interim" report on the Dixon-Yates contract.
13.96 These investigations set the tone for Antitrust and Monopoly Subcommittee activities during the next 25 years. Under its chairmen from 1955-68, Harley M. Kilgore of West Virginia (1955-56), Joseph C. O'Mahoney of Wyoming (acting chairman following Senator Kilgore's death, 1956), Estes Kefauver of Tennessee (1957-1963), and Philip A. Hart of Michigan (1963-76), the subcommittee investigated pricing practices and mergers in the meat-packing industry; so-called administered prices (those over which a selling industry has some degree of control, as opposed to market-driven prices), particularly in the steel, automobile, insurance, and drug industries; alleged price fixing and bid rigging in the electrical equipment industry; ownership of pharmaceutical businesses, pharmacies, and medical appliance stores by doctors; diet pills and doctors specializing in the treatment of obesity; American drug company operations in Latin America; sales of hearing aids; monopolistic business practices in foreign countries; packaging and labeling practices affecting consumers; control and ownership of space communications satellites; the funeral industry; franchising; the oil shale industry; joint operating agreements for newspapers and "failing newspaper" legislation; antitrust exemptions for professional sports; and other subjects concerning anticompetitive business practices and consumer interests.
13.97 The pre-1969 records (approximately 325 ft.) comprise many series, some of which overlap into the later period. While a substantial part of the records for the 1955-63 period (95 ft.), such as those documenting investigation of administered prices in various industries, are arranged alphabetically by type of record (mainly hearing correspondence, hearing transcripts, and investigative files on specific industries), most later records are less organized. For the 1955-63 period, the most extensively documented industries are the automotive (especially the General Motors Corporation), oil, meat-packing, electrical power (including the Dixon-Yates contract and the proposed merger of the Puget Sound Power and Light Co. and the Washington Water Power Co.), drug, and aviation insurance industries. An unpublished file plan for these records is available.
13.98 The records also include a small number of unprinted transcripts of hearings, 1953-54 and 1957, (2 ft.), on various subjects; copies of bids for parts and materials in an investigation of certain Tennessee Valley Authority contracts, 1956-59 (5 ft.); subject files, correspondence, and other records relating to truth-in-packaging legislation, 1959-66 (19 ft.); and subject files relating to the insurance investigation, c. 1958-60 (10 ft.).
13.99 Records of the general counsel and staff directors S. Jerry Cohen and Howard "Buck" O'Leary, assistant staff director Horace Flurry, and several associate counsels of the subcommittee are included in the records. Most of these files begin approximately 1965 and continue into the mid-1970's. Each associate counsel concentrated on certain investigations; for example, files of Dorothy D. Goodwin, 1961-71 (31 ft.), which have been inventoried, reflect her responsibility for investigations of anticompetitive business practices in the drug and medical fields. Records of the subcommittee chief minority counsel, Peter N. Chumbris, 1957-81 (34 ft.), consist of subject and legislative case files, but contain little pre-1969 material and are poorly organized; the lack of organization is compensated for by a folder title list and two indexes. Chumbris' files contain correspondence with many of the Republican members of the Judiciary Committee, and document his association with Roman Hruska of Nebraska. Also related directly to records of the subcommittee staff are the personal papers of John M. Blair, subcommittee chief economist from 1957 to 1970 (48 ft.). Blair's files, which also document his career as chief economist for the Federal Trade Commission prior to his service with the subcommittee, are largely reference files assembled for administered prices and economic concentration investigations, but also include correspondence with many economists.
13.100 The Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights was established by a resolution of the Senate Judiciary Committee, approved January 20, 1955, to survey the "extent to which the Constitutional rights of the people of the United States were being respected and enforced." Funds to conduct hearings and investigate this subject were authorized by S. Res. 94, 84th Cong., and continued by later resolutions. The subcommittee concentrated on rights guaranteed, recognized, safeguarded, or protected under the Constitution.
13.101 From its beginning, subcommittee policy precluded its involvement in matters still before the courts or with individual cases that did not appear to relate to some policy or rule that might infringe on some constitutional right. It did, however, invite the public to bring to its attention violations that raised issues of general application. Consequently, as the subcommittee's activities became known, it received thousands of complaints, inquiries, and requests for information and assistance from a variety of sources.
13.102 The chairmen of the subcommittee were Thomas C. Hennings, Jr., of Missouri (1955-60); Joseph C. O'Mahoney of Wyoming (September-December 1960, following Senator Hennings' death); Sam J. Ervin of North Carolina (1961-1974); and John W. Tunney of California (1975-76). Following Senator Ervin's retirement at the end of the 93d Congress, Senator Tunney's Subcommittee on Representation of Citizens' Interests was merged into the Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights. When the subcommittee convened at the beginning of the 95th Congress (1977), it had no permanent chairman because Senator Tunney failed to be reelected. Because the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1977 (S. Res. 4, 95th Cong.) placed limits on the number and membership of subcommittees, the jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights was assigned to the Subcommittee on Constitutional Amendments, chaired at that time by Birch E. Bayh of Indiana.
13.103 The records, 1955-76 (59 ft.), consist primarily of correspondence of the chairman and professional staff members, arranged by subject and thereunder chronologically by date of receipt, and general correspondence, arranged chronologically. The records also include research files, staff memorandums, and newspaper clippings. Much of the correspondence relates to individual cases of alleged abuse of constitutional rights. The pre-1969 subjects include civil rights and the loyalty-security program, restriction of travel abroad by U.S. citizens through denial of passports, confessions and police detention, freedom of the press as it relates to fair trials and freedom of information, rights of the mentally ill, rights of American Indians, military justice, rights of civil servants, and rights to bail and speedy trials. Among the miscellaneous records of the subcommittee are files on the efforts of Helen Sobell, wife of convicted spy Martin Sobell (a defendant in the Julius and Ethel Rosenberg espionage case), and others, to obtain the subcommittee's assistance in freeing her husband from Federal prison, and on the proposed deportation of Iva Ikuko Toguri D'Aquino ("Tokyo Rose") in 1956. The records are more fully described in an unpublished finding aid prepared by National Archives staff.
13.104 The purpose of the vaguely named Special Subcommittee on Improvement of the Federal Criminal Code was to find ways and means of "improving the Federal Criminal Code and other laws and enforcement procedures dealing with the possession, sale, and transportation of narcotics, marihuana, and similar drugs." Pursuant to S. Res. 67, 84th Cong., approved March 8, 1955, the subcommittee, under chairman Price Daniel of Texas (1955-57) and later, Joseph O'Mahoney of Wyoming (1957-58), held 38 open and 18 executive hearings, where they heard testimony from Government officials, medical experts, and drug addicts and smugglers on the causes, treatment, and rehabilitation of addicts, on the narcotics smuggling from Mexico, and on control of dangerous drugs in the District of Columbia. One of the witnesses was the horror film actor Bela Lugosi, who had been treated for drug addiction. The records, 1955-58 (19 ft.), are arranged under primary subject or record type headings. Over half of the records concern narcotics and include questionnaires completed by law enforcement officials, U.S. attorneys, and State attorneys general. There are also files on witnesses such as Lugosi, and legislative proposals, such as the bill, H.R. 11619, 84th Cong., which became the Narcotic Control Act of 1956 (Public Law 84-728). Another concern of the subcommittee was the establishment of procedures for the production of Government records in criminal cases in United States courts, as a result of the Supreme Court decision in the case Clifton E. Jencks v. United States. Jencks was a labor union official, whose perjury conviction was thrown out because Federal prosecutors had refused to make available to his attorney the statements made against him by paid FBI informants. As a result of this case, the Senate passed a bill, S. 2377, 85th Cong., enacted as the so-called Jencks Act (71 Stat. 595), which sharply restricted the Court's decision.
13.105 Records, 1963-64 (3 ft.), of this subcommittee consist of a legislative case file on S. 1663, which proposed the 1963 amendments to the Administrative Procedures Act of 1946 (60 Stat. 237). The file includes staff notes, agency and public comments, and a section-by-section analysis of the bill.
13.106 Records, 1966-67 (1 in.), of this subcommittee consist of minutes of subcommittee meetings, such as the markup on the Johnson administration's crime control bill (S. 917, 90th Cong.), and related records.
13.107 The Committee on the Revision of the Laws was established by a Senate resolution introduced by Henry Anthony of Rhode Island and approved on December 10, 1868. Roscoe Conkling of New York was the first chairman. The committee was terminated by Senate order on January 14, 1928.
13.108 The records (3 in.) of this minor standing committee consist of petitions and memorials referred to the committee in the 41st, 42d, 43d, and 58th Congresses concerning such matters as the 1870 census, temperance legislation, revenue laws, and Federal judges in the Hawaiian Islands. One noteworthy document is the resolution of the New York State Legislature rescinding the State's resolution adopting the 15th Amendment (41A-H22). There are also committee papers (less than 1 in.) for the 57th and 58th Congress.
Records of the Committee on Patents and the Patent Office, 25th-40th Congresses (1837-1869)
Records of the Committee on Patents, 41st-79th Congresses (1869-1946)
13.109 The Committee on Patents and the Patent Office was established September 7, 1837, when the Senate approved a resolution of Henry Hubbard of Kentucky. Until this time, legislation and other matters relating to patents and the Patent Office were referred to the Committee on the Judiciary. However, as Felix Grundy of Tennessee explained in support of the resolution on the floor of the Senate, the Judiciary Committee "being almost always engaged with subjects of its own of importance, had frequently found it impossible to pay that attention to others which they deserved..." John Ruggles of Maine was shortly thereafter appointed chairman of the committee. In 1869, the name of the committee was shortened to simply the Committee on Patents, which it remained until the committee was eliminated by the provisions of the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946. Beginning January 2, 1947, jurisdiction over patents, the Patent Office, and patent law reverted to the Judiciary Committee and its Subcommittee on Patents, Copyrights, and Trademarks.
13.110 The records (26 ft.) include committee reports and papers, 1837-47 (1 in.); committee papers, 1851-1946 (14 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies referred to the committee, 1837-1946 (12 ft.); legislative dockets, 1925-46 (2 vols., 3 in.); and minutes of committee meetings, March 15, 1924-June 10, 1946 (1 vol., 1 in.). Missing from the records are committee reports and papers for the 28th Congress (1845-47) and for many later Congresses there are either no committee papers or no petitions and memorials.
13.111 Records of the Committee on Patents during this period (16 ft.) document some of the actions taken by certain U.S. and a small number of foreign inventors and inventor-entrepreneurs to protect and exploit their patents, as well as by those who opposed these efforts. Congress did not become involved normally in decisions to grant patents; such determinations were made initially by patent examiners and approved by the Commissioner of Patents. Frequently, however, inventors sought to extend their patent protection for an additional number of years. Extensions of patents were also granted by the Commissioner when good cause could be shown; for example, if the patent holder or his heirs or legal representative could document reasons why the invention was not exploited commercially during the original grant. Congress became involved in the process when a patent holder, after being denied an extension, appealed to Congress to pass a private law granting the extension. Most of the records in all three principal series document cases involving extensions, or less commonly, the reissue of patents. If the remedy sought in the original petition was introduced as a bill, the bill would be referred to the committee, where it might be reported favorably or adversely; if favorably reported, it might eventually be passed and enacted, but, like any act, it might still be vetoed by the President. For example, the records of S. 691, 44th Cong., for the relief of Edward A. Leland, include the enrolled bill and the veto message of President U. S. Grant, issued just before Grant left office (44A-E11). Some inventors sought passage of a private bill on their own behalf repeatedly, and most were unsuccessful in surmounting numerous bureaucratic and legislative hurdles. The Senators were probably well aware of the poor success rate of such attempts and may have themselves been frustrated by the process. A report of April 12, 1858 (S. Rpt. 171, 35th Cong., 1st sess., Serial 939), relating to a bill for the relief of Bancroft Woodcock, noted that four favorable reports had been issued but no bill had passed in the past 12 years; by then Woodcock's plough improvements were in general use. The committee also commented that the case presented a strong illustration of the impropriety and uselessness of applications to Congress for the extension of patents (36A-H11).
13.112 Notwithstanding the difficulties encountered by inventors in pursuing private laws, the records contain information on a number of significant 19th century inventors who sought extensions or whose approved extensions were opposed by competing inventors and businessmen and others with a vested interest in terminating royalty payments for use of patented inventions. Among the most significant of the inventors are Aza Arnold (33A-E9), Thomas Blanchard (29A-D10, 29A-G13, 37A-H11), James Bogardus (29A-D10, 29A-G13), Samuel Colt (33A-E9, 33A-H14, 35A-H11, 36A-11), William Crompton (35A-E8), James A. Cutting (41A-E13), Charles Goodyear (31A-H13, 38A-H13), Nathaniel Hayward (33A-H14, 35A-E8, 34A-H14), Obed Hussey (33A-H14, 34A-H14), John L. Mason (46A-H15.1), Cyrus McCormick (31A-H13, 32A-E9, 32A-H14.3, 33A-H14, 34A-H14), Stephen McCormick (26A-G12), Samuel F. B. Morse (36A-H11), Hiram Pitts (35A-H11), Capt. Henry M. Shreve (27A-G12), Frederick E. Sickels (37A-H11), Edwin A. Stevens (34A-H14), Allen B. Wilson (42A-H17.1, 43A-H15, 44A-H14), Ross Winans (29A-D10, 29A-G13), and O.F. Winchester (40A-H16). After the 49th Congress (1885-87), there are few records relating to patent extension.
13.113 Beginning in the 1880's, the records of the committee, particularly the petitions and memorials, are less numerous, and they concern general patent and copyright legislation and international agreements, rather than individual cases. For most prior Congresses, there are occasional memorials favoring such matters, but in the early 1880's, there are several bills, petitions, and memorials, and related records on matters of general revisions of patent, trademark, and copyright laws, such as patent infringement. For example, the records include an original transcript of a hearing, March 17, 1884, on S. 1115, H.R. 3925, and H.R. 3934, 48th Cong., concerning the process of recovery for patent infringement (48A-E15). Other bills, such as S. 2939, 55th Cong., concern specific industries; in this instance, U.S. music publishers sought protection from "piracy" by Canadian music publishers of their copyrights on popular sheet music of the late 1890's, such as "Sweet Rosie O'Grady." The file on S. 2939 contains numerous examples of these U.S. and Canadian publications (55A-F20).
13.114 The records of the Committee on Patents for this period (10 ft.) are markedly different from those of the 19th century. Case files on bills and resolutions referred to the committee are found in the series papers supporting specific bills and resolutions. From 1901 until 1923, there are few significant records. For the few Congresses for which there are any committee papers, there are mainly copies of annual reports of the Commissioner of Patents and other executive communications and reports that are printed. The petitions concern a limited number of subjects, including various bills to amend copyright laws regarding trademarks (58A-J56) and patent laws regarding drugs (58A-J57, 59A-J80). Other petitions illustrate the conflicting positions of typographers, on one hand, and librarians and academics on the other, with respect to the importation of foreign publications (59A-J79).
13.115 Beginning with the records of the 68th Congress (1923-25), more records have been retained. There are small correspondence files for the chairman during each Congress, except for the 74th and 75th Congresses (1935-39), until the elimination of the committee. The chairmen for whom there are records include Richard P. Ernst of Kentucky, 1923-27 (68A-F16, 69A-F19); Jesse H. Metcalf of Rhode Island, 1927-29 (70A-F16); Charles W. Waterman of Colorado, 1929-31 (71A-F20); Felix Hebert of Rhode Island, 1931-33 (72A-F20); Robert F. Wagner of New York, 1933-35 (73A-F19); Homer T. Bone of Washington, 1936-44 (76A-F17, 77A-F22, 78A-F22); and Claude E. Pepper of Florida, 1945-46 (79A-F21). Of these, the most extensive (2 ft.) is the correspondence of Senator Bone, which includes memorandums of committee counsel Creekmore Fath and concerns the subject of patents and the war effort.
13.116 The minutes, 1924-46, summarize committee meetings from the 2d session of the 68th Congress through the 79th Congress, and the legislative dockets, 1925-46, denote actions taken by the committee on each bill and resolution referred to it from the 69th Congress through the 79th Congress.
13.117 On January 9, 1882, the Senate approved by a 35-24 vote a resolution offered by George Hoar of Massachusetts to establish a "special committee of seven Senators" to whom "all petitions, bills, and resolves asking for the extension of suffrage to women or the removal of their legal disabilities" shall be referred. In 1909, Nelson Aldrich of Rhode Island submitted a resolution that had the effect of giving all current select committees, including Woman Suffrage, full committee status. In 1921, the Senate approved S. Res. 43, 67th Cong., which abolished the Committee on Woman Suffrage and many obsolete committees.
13.118 The records of both committees (1 ft.) consist largely of petitions and memorials. For a more detailed description see the records of the select committee. The records of the standing committee consist only of petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures referred to the committee, 1913-19 (7 in.). Most of these documents express approval of an amendment to the Constitution providing woman suffrage (63A-J85, 65A-J56). Other petitions on this subject were tabled (63A-K15, 64A-K9, 65A-K11), rather than referred to the committee.
13.119 The Senate Committee on Immigration was established on December 12, 1889, during the first session of the 51st Congress after approval of a resolution introduced by Senator Orville H. Platt of Connecticut. The committee was created during the great wave of southern European and Asian immigration to the United States in the late 19th century, which prompted an increasing demand for immigration regulation at the Federal level and eventually led to the creation of the Committee on Immigration. Prior to the establishment of the committee, bills, resolutions, and petitions relating to immigration were referred to the Committee on Commerce or Committee on Foreign Relations, and the Immigration Acts of 1875 and 1882 were the only significant legislation passed. These acts excluded Chinese, paupers, criminals, and others considered undesirable, and called for a 50-cent tax on each immigrant. The Immigration Committee met during each Congress until it was terminated January 2, 1947, when its functions were transferred to the Judiciary Committee under the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946. Since then, immigration matters have been referred to the Immigration and Naturalization Subcommittee, and more recently, the Immigration and Refugee Policy Subcommittee of the Judiciary Committee.
13.120 The records of the Committee on Immigration (36 ft.) consist of three series of records: Committee papers, 1890-1946 (12 ft.); petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies referred to the committee, 1890-1946 (24 ft.); and a legislative docket, 1906-17 (1 vol., 1 in.). Records relating to specific immigration bills and resolutions, 1901-46 (57th-79th Congresses), are located in the series of papers supporting specific bills and resolutions. There are no committee papers for numerous Congresses from the 52d (1891-93) to the 70th (1927-29). Beginning with the 73d Congress (1933-34), the recordkeeping practices of the Committee improved substantially. The committee papers include correspondence, printed bills, and related records and are more accessible to the researcher because they are arranged by subject. The petitions, memorials, and resolutions of State legislatures and other bodies cover all but the 75th Congress (1937-39) and are arranged for each Congress chronologically by date of referral. The bulk of petitions and memorials favor some form of restriction on immigration, although a significant number of petitions came from ethnic or nationality-based organizations that opposed restrictions. Of the various groups that advocated restriction, labor unions constituted a substantial plurality. During the earlier years of the committee, it received petitions and memorials from various obscure unions, such as the Glass Bottle Blowers' Association (54A-J14), Horse Nail Workers' Union (57A-J27), and the Retail Clerks' Protective Association (57A-J27), which existed prior to the dominance of the American Federation of Labor.
13.121 The committee papers (4 in.) are very limited and generally unarranged or arranged chronologically by date of referral or document. The records of this period mainly include printed executive communications and reports, printed House and Senate bills and resolutions, some letters from embassies, and a few petitions and memorials not filed in the other series. Two noteworthy items are a letter from Joseph Pulitzer requesting that Congress convert Liberty Island into a public park (51A-F13) and a rough manuscript history of 17th, 18th, and 19th century immigration to the U.S. (57A-F12).
13.122 In contrast, the volume of petitions and memorials (23 ft.) that were referred to the committee during this time period is substantial. In addition, the Senate during some Congresses, like the 55th Congress (1897-99), tabled many immigration-related petitions and memorials instead of referring them to the committee. The petitions, memorials, and resolutions came from various groups and individuals and contain various proposals for dealing with the influx of immigrants. Petitions from labor unions, including one letter signed by Samuel Gompers of the AFL (57A-J26), called for restriction to secure jobs for citizens. Patriotic societies, such as the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Veterans of Foreign Wars, also called for immigration restriction. Some groups, along with certain individuals, exhibited strong opposition to immigration and offered such severe measures to stop it as a 10- year suspension of immigration (54A-J14), a $50-tariff on each immigrant (54A-J14), and exclusion of all immigrants of laboring classes (59A-J46) to control it. In 1908, when immigration was at its peak, the Virginia General Assembly submitted a resolution proposing to prohibit southern Europeans from emigrating to that State (60A-J57). Some resolutions from various business organizations, such as the chamber of commerce of Los Angeles (57A-J27), also supported restriction, but a greater number, including the chambers of commerce of San Francisco and New York City (57A-J26) protested such legislation because immigrants were valued as a needed source of labor. Numerous resolutions from other types of organizations and petitions from individuals were submitted, most of which called for restriction. Generally these petitions were signed by a number of members of the same community and many are of a standardized form, using the same language and appearing in many States. While most petitions favored immigration restriction, there are also a number opposed to restriction, mainly from organizations formed by the recent immigrants themselves. Following the assassination of President McKinley, other petitions and memorials advocated laws to restrict "undesirables" such as "paupers, "criminals and anarchists" (57A-J30).
13.123 During the years from 1899 to 1914, immigration to the United States from southern and eastern Europe reached its peak. In response to the increase in immigration, labor unions, certain charities, and nativist organizations inundated the Senate with petitions, memorials, and resolutions proposing or supporting various remedies. Among these were the use of a literacy test to weed out poorly educated immigrants who were predominantly Catholic, Jewish, or oriental (57A-J27, 59A-J47, 62A-J44, 63A-J32); restriction of entire groups, especially the Chinese (57A-J26, 59A-J46, 59A-J47); dispersion of immigrants from urban areas through continuation of the Division of Information, established in 1907 under the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization (61A-J40, 62A-J44); and increased regulation of naturalization (59A-J45, 59A-J47). These proposals eventually formed the basis of the Immigration Act of 1917, which required a literacy test for all immigrants and created an "asiatic barred zone" that excluded most people of Asian descent from the United States.
13.124 After World War I, the committee received petitions and memorials supporting legislation to exclude or deport subversives (66A-J28) and alien draft evaders who were exempted from military service because of their status as noncitizens (65A-J24). There are numerous petitions for restricting Japanese immigrants, who were exempted from the rules of the asiatic barred zone by Theodore Roosevelt's 1907 "Gentlemen's Agreement" (66A-J39, 66A-J30, 68A-J27). In 1920, the committee received many petitions, some in response to the violent labor dispute in Centralia, WA, involving the International Workers of the World, favoring the restriction of Communists and other subversives (66A-J28, 66A-J29, 66A-J30). But by the following year, these anti-Communist petitions had dwindled and were replaced by calls for the Johnson bill to restrict immigration by means of a quota system. This campaign for a quota system to restrict immigration was very intense and culminated in passage of the Immigration Act of 1924 (Public Law 68-139). For over a decade (1921-32), the committee received numerous petitions, memorials, and resolutions both favoring and opposing the quota system, particularly the national origins provision of the 1924 act. These documents describe various methods of determining what classes to include in the quota and contain suggestions for amending or repealing the act (67A-J29, 68A-J27, 70A-J17, 71A-J32, 72A-J33).
13.125 The records for this period consist of committee papers (12 ft.) and petitions and memorials referred to the committee (6 in.). The committee papers are arranged according to the type of document, such as executive communications and reports, recommendations from various executive departments on specific bills, correspondence, committee requests for information from executive agencies, and even several petitions, or arranged by subject, such as deportation of aliens, and registration of aliens. The committee papers also include committee vote tallies, administrative records relating to committee hearings and original transcripts of printed hearings, mailing lists, legislative calendars, copies of speeches of some Senators, and printed private relief bills concerning immigration status of individuals. Also included are several requests for excepting Jewish war refugees from immigration quotas as well as letters from those opposed (73A-F11), the original of an October 12, 1943, Presidential address to Congress in favor of admitting Chinese, signed by Franklin Roosevelt (78A-F12), Attorney General reports (9 ft.) concerning over 18,000 aliens whose pending deportation was suspended due to extenuating circumstances (78A-F12, 79A-F11), and news articles and other accounts of the Special House Committee to Investigate Un-American Activities Chairman Martin Dies, Jr.'s fight against Communist subversives (79A-F11).
13.126 The petitions and memorials are mainly from various labor and patriotic groups advocating some type of further restriction and/or deportation, from certain ethnic groups against restriction, and from private individuals for quota exemptions or exceptions to naturalization laws. Beginning in the early 1930's, the committee again received a number of petitions for excluding communists. Specifically, both the Georgia and California State Legislatures called for Communist exclusion by way of deportation, denial of entrance, and detection through mail inspection (74A-J12). Also in this series is a memorial for the release of war refugees held at the Fort Ontario emergency refugee camp in New York State (79A-J10), and a memorial from Citizens for Constitutional Security against "prematurely" granting citizenship to Albert Einstein (73A-J25).
Bibliographic note: Web version based on Guide to the Records of the United States Senate at the National Archives, 1789-1989: Bicentennial Edition (Doct. No. 100-42). By Robert W. Coren, Mary Rephlo, David Kepley, and Charles South. Washington, DC: National Archives and Records Administration, 1989.
This Web version is updated from time to time to include records processed since 1989.