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Benjamin Reifel Papers

  • MA 009
  • Papers
  • 1905-1990

This collection is composed of memorabilia, scrapbooks, campaign items, and personal items related to Reifel's career as a public servant, especially his years in the United States Senate and his work with the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The bulk of congressional material is memorabilia and scrapbooks and not records related to his term of office. Other materials are related chiefly to his post-congressional speaking career.

Reifel, Ben, 1906-1990

Frank E. Denholm Papers

  • MA 074
  • Papers
  • 1934-2016

The Frank E. Denholm Papers consist mostly of materials generated during the time he served as the representative to South Dakota’s First Congressional District, from 1971 to 1975. These materials document his work for rural America, particularly his effort to reinstate the Rural Electrification Act and numerous legislation regarding agriculture, rural water, and rural development. Press releases and newspaper clippings about his activities in Congress can be found in the papers. The collection also includes scrapbooks and memorabilia about his campaigns for Congress. In addition, there are several files of correspondence, some of which was with members of Congress and other notable people such as George McGovern and Richard Kneip. The collection includes nearly 1,500 photographs and slides, most of which relate to his campaigns for Congress. There are reel-to-reel audio recordings and video recordings on 2-inch quad video tape that consist of campaign advertisements and his work in Congress. The collection also documents Denholm’s career as a sheriff, auctioneer, F.B.I. agent, and lawyer.

The papers also contain documents relating to Frank Denholm’s wife, Mildred Niehaus Denholm. Mrs. Denholm was born May 9, 1927 to Frank F. and Elizabeth C. (Schuring) Niehaus from Andover, South Dakota. She married Frank Denholm on June 12, 1950 in Webster, South Dakota. She attended Northern State Teachers College in Aberdeen, SD and taught in rural schools. Mrs. Denholm also went to the Aberdeen School of Business, the Strayer Business College in Washington, D.C., and the University of Utah where she studied music. She worked as a medical and legal secretary. Mrs. Denholm actively campaigned for her husband. She was involved in the Congressional Women’s Club while Denholm was in office. Mrs. Denholm passed away August 14, 2014. The collection includes correspondence between Frank and Mildred Denholm and her activities with the Congressional Women’s Club.

Denholm, Frank E. (Frank Edward) 1923-2016

Thomas A. Daschle U.S. House of Representatives Papers

  • DA 001
  • Papers
  • 1964-1992

After college, Daschle worked for three years as an intelligence officer in the U.S. Air Force Strategic Air Command. He worked part-time for George McGovern’s 1972 presidential campaign during the time that he was stationed at Air Command headquarters in Omaha, Nebraska. After discharge from the service, Daschle worked as a staff assistant to South Dakota Senator James Abourezk from 1972-1977.

In 1978, Tom Daschle ran against Republican Leo Thorsness for the seat in the House of Representatives vacated by Congressman Larry Pressler. Daschle’s door-to-door campaign resulted in a narrow win of 14 votes over Thorsness, although a recount nudged up his margin of victory to 139 votes. In November of 1980, Daschle won a resounding re-election victory with a 66%-34% margin.

South Dakota lost one of its two House seats after the 1980 census, which meant that Tom Daschle and Republican Congressman Clint Roberts would run against each other for the lone House seat in the 1982 election. Daschle won narrowly with 52 percent of the vote. He easily won a fourth term in Congress in the 1984 election.

Congressman Daschle served on the House Agriculture and Veterans Affairs Committees and the Select Committee on Hunger. He was the first South Dakotan and only freshman member to be elected to a leadership position when he was named Rocky Mountain Regional Whip in 1979. He was appointed “Whip-at-Large” in the House in March of 1982. In 1983, Daschle was elected to the House Steering and Policy Committee.

During his tenure in the U.S. House of Representatives, Congressman Daschle was founder and co-chairman of the Congressional Alcohol Fuels Caucus, chairman of Vietnam Veterans in Congress Caucus, and a member of the Tourism and Rural Caucuses.

The U.S. House of Representatives papers is composed of some campaign files and voting record information. Also included is "The Daschle Record" which contains 12 books compiled by his staff containing Daschle's voting record, sponsorships, and summaries of committee and subcommittee records from 1979 to 1986.

Thomas A. Daschle Personal Papers

  • DA 03
  • Papers
  • 1968-2005

The Personal Papers are composed of materials Daschle separated from the rest of the collection which were of personal interest to him. Included are pre-congressional materials, campaign records, legislative records, correspondence, political records, media files, and files saved for their intrinsic value.