Finding aid prepared by Julie Williams
Garrett Lee Withers papers
University of Kentucky Special Collections
Arranged alphabetically by subject and thereunder chronologically
Housed with multiple collections.
Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
77M8: [identification of item], Garrett Lee Withers papers, 1933-1953, bulk 1949-1953, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
2.26 Cubic feet
3 boxes, 7 items
Garrett Lee Withers was born on a farm in Webster County, near Clay, Kentucky, June 21, 1884. He was educated at Providence M. and F. Academy and Southern Normal School in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Admitted to the bar in 1908, Withers practiced law in Webster County from 1911 until 1953. From 1910 to 1912 he served as clerk of Webster County Circuit Court and was master commissioner from 1913-1917. Withers was a member of the Kentucky Highway Commission from 1932 to 1936 and served as Commissioner of that agency from December 10, 1947 until January 17, 1949.
Withers was appointed as a Democrat to the United States Senate by Governor Earle Clements to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Alben W. Barkley. He served in the Senate from January 20, 1949 until November 26, 1950, a successor having been elected. Withers was not a candidate for election to the vacancy. Withers served in the Kentucky House of Representatives from 1951 to 1952.
Elected to the eighty-second Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Second District congressman John A. Whitaker; Withers was reelected to the eighty-third Congress and served from August 2, 1952 until his death in the Naval hospital at Bethesda, Maryland, April 30, 1953.
These papers deal primarily with Withers' career in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives from 1949-1953. The papers contain correspondence, news releases, speeches made in the U.S. Senate and at miscellaneous events by Withers and A. O. Stanley, and the memorial addresses delivered in Congress upon Withers' death. Autographed photographs of his congressional colleagues from 1950 are included, as well as a Pictorial Directory of the 81st Congress (1949). Withers' campaign materials such as cards and posters are included along with various invitations and awards received from 1934-1953. Newspaper clippings, many of which are included in three scrapbooks, chronicle Withers' career in public office.
One, lengthy, handwritten letter to his daughter affords good insight into Withers' personality and values. Two folders dated 1952 deal with the Kentucky Democratic Primary and the Kentucky House of Representatives. One folder contains correspondence during 1948 when Withers was Kentucky Highway Commissioner.
The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections.
Audio/Visual Card Catalog, Coffee with Congress interview with Senator and Mrs. Withers, 1950, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
Audio/Visual Card Catalog, Address of Commissioner of Highways Withers, 1948 July 31, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
The Campaign materials series contains materials from Withers' campaigns for public offices and include cards and posters.
The series contains congressional records from 1949 to 1951.
The Correspondence series consists of Withers' general correspondence, including one, lengthy, handwritten letter to his daughter. The letter affords good insight into Withers' personality and values. Additionally, the series contains Withers' correspondence while serving as Kentucky Highway Commissioner.
The series consists of invitations and awards received from 1934 to 1953.
The Kentucky politics series consists of material from 1952 dealing with the Kentucky House of Representatives and the Kentucky Democratic Primary.
This series consists of the memorial addresses delivered in Congress upon Withers' death in 1953.
The series contains newspaper clipping chronicling Withers' career in the public sphere.
The Photographs and illustrations series includes autographed photographs of congressmen from 1950, a 1949 Pictorial Directory of the 81st Congress, sketches made by John Withers, and a framed picture of the 1952 Kentucky House of Representatives.
The Speeches series consists of Withers' campaign speeches, United States Senate speeches as well as other assorted speeches. Additionally, the series includes speeches made by A. O. Stanley.
The U.S. Senate series includes legislation and passes from his time in the Senate in the late 1940s and early 1950s.
The Scrapbooks series consists of scrapbooks of newspaper clippings, which document Withers' political career.