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Floyd D. Spence Collection

Spence, Floyd D. (1928-2001)

Papers, c. 1928-2001, 75 ft.

Spence served in the South Carolina House of Representatives (Lexington County), 1957-1962, when he announced he was leaving the Democratic Party and would run for Congress as a Republican, making him the first notable office holder in SC to switch parties. He went on to represent South Carolina's Second District in Congress from 1971 until his death in 2001.

This large collection primarily documents Spence's tenure serving South Carolina's Second District in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1971-2001, where he chaired the Committee on National Security, later renamed the Committee on Armed Services (1995-2000). The papers are divided into six series: Public Papers, Personal Papers, Travel, Speeches, Audiovisual, and Clippings. Public papers are further divided into Administrative, Contacts, Public Relations, Schedules, Topical, and Voting Record files.

Oral History Transcript (10 pages)
In this 1978 interview conducted for the show, "University Forum," Spence discusses various topics including taxes and inflation, cuts in appropriations, special interest rating groups, and the media's role in the 1978 campaign.

Oral History Transcript (33 pages)
In this 1992 interview, Spence discusses his entry into politics and decision to resign from the Democratic Party and join the Republican Party

Related Oral History:

Oral History Transcript (48 pages)
W.A. “Al” Cook (1925-c. 2005) was former Legislative Assistant to S.C. Second-District Congressman John J. Riley and chief of staff to his successors, Albert Watson and Floyd Spence.  He served on the Hill from March 1953 to his retirement from federal service in 1985.  In this 2001 interview, he reflects on his career and the members under whom he served.

Related Links:

Congressional Biographical Directory

Memory Hold the Door (USC Law School)

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