Morse, Wayne L. (Wayne Lyman), 1900-1974

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1900-10-20
Death 1974-07-22
English

Biographical notes:

Senator; interviewee d. 1974.

From the description of Reminiscences of Wayne Lyman Morse : oral history, 1957. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 122513706

Wayne Lyman Morse was born October 20, 1900 in Verona, Wisconsin. He graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 1923 with a major in labor economics and obtained a masters degree in 1924. He attended law school at the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1928 and then went to Columbia University on a teaching fellowship. Morse married Mildred Downie in June 1924. The Morses had three daughters. The family moved to Edgewood Farm, three miles outside of Eugene, Oregon. Morse was appointed assistant professor of law at the University of Oregon in 1929 and dean of the School of Law in 1931. During the 1930s Morse served on a variety of legislative committees. In 1944, Morse left his position as Law dean and pursued a seat on the U.S. Senate. His campaign focused on his connection with the people. Morse beat Rufus C. Holman (incumbant Republican) in the primary election of 1944 and later won the election against Democratic nominee Edgar W. Smith by a large margin. Morse served as U.S. Senator from 1945-1969, first as a Republican, then as an Independent, and finally as a Democrat. With a Senate career that spanned from the end of World War II to the Vietnam War, Morse had many interests and perused a vast range of issues during his nearly 25 years as U.S. Senator from Oregon.

From the description of Wayne L. Morse papers, 1919-1969 (bulk 1944-1968). (University of Oregon Libraries). WorldCat record id: 53818920

Wayne Lyman Morse (1900-1974) was a senator from Oregon, known for opposing the Republican leadership and for his opposition to the Vietnam War.

From the guide to the Wayne Morse cartoon collection, circa 1945-1974, (Oregon Historical Society Research Library)

Wayne Lyman Morse (1900-1974), U.S. Senator, served as public member of the National War Labor Board (NWLB) from January 12, 1942 to February 2, 1944.

From the description of Morse, Wayne L. (Wayne Lyman), 1900-1974 (U.S. National Archives and Records Administration). naId: 10569360

Wayne Lyman Morse (1900-1974) was a senator from Oregon, known for opposing the Republican leadership and for his opposition to the Vietnam War.

He became an Independent in 1952 after the election of Dwight D. Eisenhower. He set the record for performing the longest one-person filibuster in the history of the Senate. In 1955 he became a Democrat and was subsequently reelected twice.

From the description of Wayne Morse cartoon collection [manuscript], circa 1945-1974. (Oregon Historical Society Research Library). WorldCat record id: 712149526

Wayne Morse was a Republican (1944-52), Independent (1952-55), Democrat (1955-68) United States Senator for Oregon. He ran for President in 1960 as the Democrat candidate.

Mr. Paul H. Farrier was the Director of Admissions at Virginia Polytechnic Institute. He was also involved in the recording of the actions taken by the University in the admission of the first African Amercian Student, Irving L. Peddrew III.

Sources: Office of the President, Walter S. Newman, RG 2/10, Special Collections, University Libraries, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.

From the guide to the Wayne Morse Letter, 1947, (Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.)

Wayne Lyman Morse was born on October 20, 1900 in Verona, Wisconsin, and grew up on his family's farm. He received a degree in labor economics from the University of Wisconsin in 1923, and was awarded a masters degree from the university in 1924. That same year he married Mildred Downie, a high school home economics teacher. While teaching and coaching the debate team at the University of Minnesota, he attended law school. After receiving his LL.B. in 1928, Columbia University awarded him a teaching fellowship and a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree.

The family moved to Eugene in 1929, where Morse took a position as assistant professor of law at the University of Oregon. Nine months later, at 30 years of age, he was named dean of the School of Law. Morse was the youngest law school dean in the country. In 1932 Morse was instrumental in rousing Oregon voters to defeat the Zorn-Macpherson bill, which proposed moving the University's liberal arts curriculum to Oregon State College in Corvallis, and making the University of Oregon a teacher college. Throughout the 1930s, Morse served on numerous state legislative committees. He served as Chairman of the American Bar Association's committee on prisons, probation and parole, and on the Oregon Crime Commission and the Governor's Commission on judicial reform.

Between 1938 and 1944, Morse was appointed arbitrator in a series of labor cases, most of them involving maritime unions. During the same time, Morse also served on the National War Labor Board.

In 1944, Morse stepped down from his post as dean of the School of Law and pursued a seat in the U.S. Senate. His Senate campaign focused on his connection with the people, highlighting his work as a labor arbitrator. He beat incumbent Republican Rufus C. Holman in the primary election, and went on to win the state election by a wide margin over Democratic nominee Edgar W. Smith.

Morse served as U. S. Senator from 1945 to 1969. After defecting from the Republican party in 1952, he sat in a chair in the middle of the Senate aisle to emphasize his independence. He joined the Democrats in 1955, and became an outspoken opponent of the Vietnam War. He was joined only by Alaskan Senator Ernest Gruening in voting against President Johnson's Gulf of Tonkin Resolution. His 24-year career in the U.S. Senate ended when Robert Packwood, a young Republican from Lake Oswego who called Morse's dissent reckless, defeated him in the 1968 election.

Morse's career was the subject of the film The Last Angry Man: The Story of America's Most Controversial Senator, produced by Christopher Houser and Robert Millis (Square Deal Productions, 1999).

Sources:

Morse for U. S. Senator Committee. "Facts About Wayne Morse." 1944.

Drukman, Mason. Wayne Morse: A Political Biography . Portland, Oregon: The Oregon Historical Society Press, 1997.

From the guide to the Wayne L. Morse papers, 1919-1969, (Special Collections and University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries)

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Subjects:

  • Scrapbooks
  • Politicians--Oregon
  • Politics and government--Oregon--20th century
  • Colleges and Universities
  • Legislators--Interviews
  • Moving Images
  • Legislators
  • University Archives
  • Caricatures and cartoons
  • Legislators--United States
  • Politicians
  • Politics and government--20th century--Pictorial Works
  • Elections--1968
  • Virginia Polytechnic Institute
  • Politics and government--20th century
  • Government and Politics
  • Radio advertising
  • Sound Recordings
  • Senators--Oregon--Pictorial Works
  • Political cartoons--20th century
  • Elections--Oregon--1968
  • Oregon
  • Politics and politicians
  • Senators--Pictorial Works
  • Television advertising
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  • Politics and government--United States--20th century--Pictorial Works

Occupations:

not available for this record

Places:

  • Oregon (as recorded)
  • Oregon (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Oregon (as recorded)
  • Oregon (as recorded)
  • Oregon (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)