Special Collections



Legislatoin Series: 1962-1984
Linear Feet: 58.8 linear feet (152 document cases, 4 audio cassettes)
Status: All files are open.
Boxes: 101-252

Legislation Senator Tower’s interests extended to a broad range of legislative issues such as stimulating economic growth, improving opportunities for small business, encouraging U.S. exports, improving the transportation system, and promoting vigorous financial institutions and systems. His attention often focused on agriculture, energy, fishing and maritime industries, and other areas of commerce vital to the Texas economy. The series includes background materials related to legislation on which Tower and his staff worked, voting record reports and analysis, correspondence, statements and speeches, printed bills, memoranda, and some materials related to the activities of the Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs.

The largest group of files, the Subject files subseries, primarily contains material that Senator Tower’s staff generated in the course of writing and amending legislation: correspondence, memoranda, briefs, reports, transcriptions of hearings and testimony, legislative notices, mark-ups for committee consideration, maps, telegrams, copies of bills and amendments, clippings, brochures and position papers. Also found are the senator’s floor remarks as well as other speeches he made related to pending legislation. Senator Tower was a member of the Banking and Currency Committee and then the Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee throughout most of his Senate career, and his activities and interests here are well-documented.

In addition to materials related to legislative activities, a number of files concern the committee’s operation, membership, and subcommittees. Among the bills Senator Tower introduced or sponsored are the Truth in Lending Simplification Act of 1976, the Consumer Loan Contracts Act of 1976, and an amendment to the Export-Import Act of 1940. Information about Community Development Block Grants, efforts to repeal the Davis-Bacon Act, and federally sponsored development programs for Texas towns such as San Angelo and Alice are found among files related to the senator’s service on the Housing and Urban Affairs Subcommittee. Files labeled “Busing, Desegregation and Discrimination” contain both case files and general files in addition to legislative materials. Much of the casework reflects the federal government’s investigation of Texas schools in the 1960s and 1970s to assure that they were complying with the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Legislation in other subseries includes the Labor Reform Act of 1978, attempts to repeal the Davis-Bacon Act, and legislation dealing with Medicare and Medicaid, drug abuse, education of illegal aliens, and sex discrimination. This series also contains a nearly complete set of bills and amendments that Senator Tower sponsored or co-sponsored as well as detailed analyses of his voting record and legislative activities.

Although most of the legislative files show the work of several staff members on a single subject, some files contain the work of a single aide or assistant, and these are found as a group at the end of this series. These files particularly reveal the role of aides in crafting legislation, providing memoranda and briefing papers on issues, and writing speeches and other works for the senator. Although most papers related to defense legislation are found in the series Defense, Foreign Relations and Armed Services Committee, the files of legislative assistant Phil Charles document legislation related to the 1981 Foreign Assistance Bill and matters such as diplomatic relations with Iran and the condemnation of the Soviet Union for violating human rights. 

Subseries Boxes

Subject Files (1947-1984, bulk 1962-1984)

General (1947-1984, bulk 1962-1984) 101-108
Agriculture (1962-1984, bulk 1975-1980) 109-121

Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs (1966-1980)

  • Banking, Savings and Loans, Mortgage, Financing
  • Housing, Building Standards, Real Estate
  • Community Development, Urban Renewal, Model Cities, Revenue Sharing, Grants, Department of Housing and Urban Development
  • Flood Disaster Assistance
  • Committee Work and Concerns
  • Transportation, Mass Transit, Aviation


Busing, Desegregation, and Discrimination (1968-1977) 142-144

Government Operations (1968-1975, bulk 1973-1974)

Labor (1970-1978) 148-149
Private Relief (1965-1982) 150-152
Social Issues (1967-1980) 153-164




 Bills (1971-1976, 1981-1984)  165-185
 Record Vote Analysis (1961-1984)  186-212
 Legislative Activity (1961-1984) 213-222 
 Congressional Record: Record Remarks (1961-1984) 223-235 
Aides (1956-1984, bulk 1961-1984) 236-252