Scope and Contents note
The Brien McMahon Papers consist of correspondence, speeches, legal papers, newspaper clippings, honors and awards, photographs, and personal ephemera concerning the life of the late Senator and his family from circa 1930 to 1953. While the majority of the papers concern McMahon's career with the U.S. Department of Justice, there is also some material regarding his two Senate terms, his marriage to Rosemary Turner, his Presidential campaign in 1952, and his death.
The collection offers not only an interesting view of the budding career of a great statesman, but also a fascinating insight into the workings of party politics in the Roosevelt era. Party loyalty was obviously an important factor as McMahon cultivated his Democratic party contacts over the years. His rising career in politics was assisted by the same Democrats whom he also patronized. It is clear that his association with Homer Cummings and other top Connecticut Democrats gave him access to leading national Democratic figures, including President Roosevelt himself. The correspondence, which includes such people as President Franklin Roosevelt, Homer S. Cummings, J. Edgar Hoover, several members of the Presidential Cabinet and many senators and congressmen, clearly documents McMahon's growing associations with ever more influential public officials as he climbed the political ladder.
The Brien McMahon Papers are organized first by subject series and then either alphabetically or by date within each series. Since much of the material in the collection was received in the original files kept by McMahon, an attempt was made to preserve his filing system as far as possible. This explains why, for example, the "Correspondence" and "Speeches" series are divided into several sections. For example, in the "Speeches" series, McMahon kept his 1938 campaign speeches in a separate file from his various other speeches, which were arranged by date, and both arrangements are preserved in this collection.
Conditions Governing Access note
Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Booth Family Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections in advance of any visit.
From the Collection: 18.75 Linear Feet (13 boxes)
Language of Materials
Various photographs of Brien McMahon with miscellaneous individuals or speaking before unidentified groups.
Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository
Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
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