Finding aid prepared by Ida Sell, Ashley Sorrell
Jouett Shouse papers
University of Kentucky Special Collections
Arranged into seven series by format or subject: Correspondence; Association Against the Prohibition Amendment (AAPA); Democratic National Committee (DNC); American Liberty League (ALL); Miscellaneous Speeches, Reports, and Autobiographical Materials; Photographs; and Personal Scrapbooks.
Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
59m61: [identification of item], Jouett Shouse papers, 1899-1967, undated, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
68.87 Cubic feet
18 boxes, 283 scrapbooks
The Jouett Shouse papers (dated 1899-1967; 68.87 cubic feet; 18 boxes, 283 scrapbooks) comprise scrapbooks; brochures, pamphlets, and leaflets; correspondence; speech scripts; and newspaper clippings, documenting Shouse’s political career as a national leader in the United States Democratic Party, as well as his political philosophy critiquing federal government intervention and expansion during Prohibition, the Depression and the New Deal eras.
Jouett Shouse was born in Midway, Ky., on December 10, 1879, the son of the Reverend Samuel Shouse. He grew up in Mexico, Missouri, and attended the University of Missouri-Columbia. After college, Shouse returned to Kentucky and from 1898-1904 worked as a reporter for the Democratic Lexington, Ky., newspapers the Morning Herald, and its successor, the Lexington Herald.
In 1911, he married his first wife and moved to Kansas where he was elected to Congress from the 7th Kansas District in 1915. Shouse served in the 64th and 65th Congresses. President Woodrow Wilson named Shouse Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in 1919, resigning the post one year later in 1920. In addition, Shouse served as Chairman of the Democratic National Executive Committee, 1929-1932; President of the Association Against the Prohibition Amendment, 1932-1933; and President of the American Liberty League, 1934-1938.
Shouse split with the mainstream Democratic Party following Franklin Roosevelt’s 1932 election and subsequent enactment of New Deal programs. The former DNC leader criticized the size of federal government and sought to limit its reach through his involvement in the Association Against the Prohibition Amendment (AAPA) and the American Liberty League (ALL). As president of the AAPA in 1932, Shouse oversaw the organization’s mobilization drive to repeal the 18th Amendment, which occurred in 1933. Through his involvement with the AAPA, Shouse became acquainted with a number of business leaders, notably the Dupont family. The Dupont’s involvement in the repeal of prohibition and the ALL is documented in the ALL scrapbooks. Shouse drew on the financial support of the Duponts and other business leaders to co-found the ALL with John Jacob Raskob.
In 1932 Shouse divorced his first wife and married Catherine Filene Dodd; they adopted a child, William Filene Shouse. Shouse and his wife owned Wolf Trap Farm in Virginia where he retired in 1965. He died in 1968 and is buried in the Lexington Cemetery in Lexington, Kentucky.
The Jouett Shouse papers (dated 1899-1967; 68.87 cubic feet; 18 boxes, 283 scrapbooks) comprise scrapbooks; brochures, pamphlets, and leaflets; correspondence; speech scripts; and newspaper clippings, documenting Shouse’s political career as a national leader in the United States Democratic Party, as well as his political philosophy critiquing federal government intervention and expansion during Prohibition, the Depression and the New Deal eras. The collection also includes 17 personal scrapbooks of articles about Shouse and one personal scrapbook of editorials he penned for the Democratic Lexington, Ky., newspaper the the Morning Herald relating to the 1900 assassination of Kentucky Governor William Goebel and subsequent political civil war for the governor’s seat.
Organizations documented include the Democratic National Committee (DNC), 1923-1936; Association Against the Prohibition Amendment (AAPA), 1923-1933; and the American Liberty League (ALL), 1934-1940. Materials associated with these organizations cover topics related to national party politics, political movements, successes and challenges of campaigning, the inner-workings of national elections, and political mobilization. Letters from William McAdoo document his failed Democratic presidential nomination bid at the Democratic National Convention in 1924.The two DNC scrapbooks from 1928 chronicle the presidential campaign of Alfred Smith who lost to Herbert Hoover. Records for AAPA and ALL document these groups’ arguments for a weaker central government and support for big business. Specifically, ALL publications and scrapbooks demonstrate the organization’s opposition from within the Democratic Party to Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal programs, in particular its concerns about government intrusion into personal liberty and private property. The collection includes a full set of ALL publications (1934-1936) and letters from William McAdoo (1921-1927), Alfred Smith (1928), and John Jacob Raskob (1930-1936).
Although a small number of family photographs are included in the collection, there is very little information on Shouse’s personal life. The personal scrapbooks do include newspaper articles about his political successes. Overall, the materials are focused on Democratic Party politics and political movements during the 1920s-1930s and not on the lived human experience of these two decades.
Property rights reside with the University of Kentucky. The University of Kentucky holds the copyright for materials created in the course of business by University of Kentucky employees. Copyright for all other materials has not been assigned to the University of Kentucky. For information about permission to reproduce or publish, please contact Special Collections.
Comprises incoming letters to Jouett Shouse and typed copies of his outgoing letters and replies, primarily consisting of telegrams and memos setting meeting dates and discussing general concerns over the Democratic Party. Other subject areas and correspondents include letters between Shouse and William McAdoo, (failed 1924 Democratic presidential nominee); letters to President Woodrow Wilson concerning World War I and mobilization on the home front; correspondence regarding Shouse's political role in the Democratic National Committee (DNC); constituent letters to Shouse during his tenure as Representative for the 7th Kansas District from 1915-1919; correspondence related to Shouse’s brief tenure and eventual resignation in 1920 as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury; and Shouse's congratulatory letters to Presidents Herbert Hoover, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Arranged chronologically and then by subject or correspondent.
Comprises primarily scrapbooks kept by Shouse, press releases, pamphlets, newspaper clippings, annual reports, and a bound journal related to Association Against the Prohibition Amendment (AAPA) activities in criticism of prohibition. The AAPA was organized in 1918 and unsuccessfully fought against the ratification of the 18th Amendment. Jouett Shouse became president of the AAPA in 1932 and oversaw the activities of the organization until the repeal of prohibition in 1933. The series includes press releases from the years 1923-1933, when the AAPA launched a large publicity campaign for the repeal of the 18th Amendment. The releases were sent to local newspapers and focused on the failure of prohibition in the United States. A bound copy of the volume two of The Minute Man (1923 to early 1924), a monthly journal published by the New Jersey division of the AAPA, also is in the series. The volume contains letters and criticisms of prohibition as it relates to the violation of civil liberties. Pamphlets from 1930-1932 detail the repeal process for prohibition. Other pamphlets include published speeches on why the ban on alcohol should end, as well as the by-laws of the AAPA. The AAPA disbanded when prohibition ended in 1933. Arranged in two subseries, press releases and publications, which include four scrapbook volumes (1932-1934), and then chronologically within each subseries.
The Association Against the Prohibition Amendment (AAPA) scrapbooks contain four volumes arranged by date of press materials related to the organizations fight for the repeal of the 18th Amendment. Jouett Shouse served as president of the AAPA from 1932 until the end of Prohibition in 1933.
Primarily comprises scrapbooks kept by Shouse, correspondence, press releases, published speeches and a transcript of the proceedings of the Committee on Arrangements for the 1932 DNC National Convention that document the local and national activities of the Democratic National Committee from 1924-1936. Jouett Shouse was a leading member of the Democratic Party and took on national predominance as chairman of the DNC Executive Committee from 1929-1932. The general correspondence comprises incoming letters to Shouse and copies of his replies discussing concerns related to the political atmosphere of the United States, as well as party organizing at the state and local levels. Other correspondence and topics include the 1924 DNC Convention, detailing the contentious nomination battle between William McAdoo, John W. Davis, and Alfred E. Smith; the Smoot-Hawley Tariff (1930); and congratulation letters to Shouse from various party members after the Democrat’s 1930 sweep of Congressional House seats. The DNC press releases (1929-1932) focus on political victories and criticisms of the Hoover administration as well as on the Smoot-Hawley Tariff. The speeches include those given in 1929 by Shouse to various political organizations and in 1932 at that year's Democratic National Convention. The scrapbooks (1929-1932, 135 volumes) contain newspaper clippings related to Shouse's role as a leading member of the Democratic Party and as chairman of the Executive Committee. Two scrapbooks are related to the 1928 presidential campaign and Shouse's support of Alfred Smith, who lost the election to Herbert Hoover. Arranged in three subseries, correspondence, publications, scrapbooks and speeches and proceedings, and then chronologically within subseries.
The Democratic National Committee (DNC) Scrapbooks contain 135 volumes of newspaper clippings, organized by date and state of publication, related to DNC events, elections, and conventions. Jouett Shouse was chairman of the DNC Executive Committee from 1929 until 1932. A subseries of the scrapbooks consist of two volumes related to the 1928 presidential election. Shouse was a supported Alfred Emmanuel Smith as the Democrat nominee who lost the election to Herbert Hoover.
Comprises scrapbooks kept by Shouse, correspondence, leaflets, pamphlets, and bulletins documenting the American Liberty League's criticism of the growth of the federal government and in particular President Franklin Delano Roosevelt's New Deal programs. Jouett Shouse co-founded the ALL with John Jakob Raskob in 1934, serving as president until the League unofficially dissolved in 1940. The League was officially dissolved through court action in 1942. Correspondence in the series includes letters to Shouse from ALL officers and rank-and-file members as well as scholars regarding league activities, proposed speeches, and press coverage, and, after 1936, reflections on the league's significance and requests for information about it. The pamphlets, leaflets, and bulletins published and distributed by the ALL offer information about the league and its purpose, as well as analyses of New Deal programs and criticisms of the Roosevelt administration. The ALL lawyer reports argue against the constitutionality of the National Recovery Act and the Agricultural Adjustment Administration. The scrapbooks include press releases and newspaper clippings from and about the ALL and its activities. Arranged in four subseries, correspondence, publications--which include leaflets, pamphlets, and bulletins--scrapbooks, and requests for ALL information, and then chronologically within subseries. Pamphlets and some of the bulletins are digitized and available here: http://exploreuk.uky.edu/catalog/xt7wwp9t2q46/guide.
The American Liberty League (ALL) scrapbooks (1934-1940) contain leaflets and membership materials, press releases, and newspaper clippings related to the organization’s activities. The scrapbooks are divided into four subseries: Leaflets and membership materials, press releases, newspaper clippings of press releases, and newspaper clippings, which include general news stories from state newspapers. Scrapbook volumes 1-113, which include state newspaper clippings, are also available on microfilm.
Comprises transcripts of speeches delivered by Jouett Shouse to Lexington-area clubs, including the Lexington chapter of the Thoroughbred Club of America; autobiographical material used for press purposes; and a 1952 report of U.S. consulates in Germany.
Comprises black-and-white photographs of the Democratic National Committee Advising Committee, 1928; Shouse giving a speech; travel in Germany; and the Shouse family.
Comprises one volume that contains editorial articles Jouett Shouse wrote from 1898-1904 as a reporter with the the Morning Herald, and the successor newspaper, the Lexington Herald. The remaining 17 scrapbooks include newspaper articles written about Shouse in different aspects of his political career.