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"In the Family Tradition: Olin D. Johnston and Elizabeth J. Patterson"

South Carolina Political Collections Gallery, Hollings Library


This photograph shows a tender moment, circa 1945, between a father and daughter, both of whom were to serve as South Carolina Congressional representatives.

The photograph is part of the new South Carolina Political Collections exhibit, “In the Family Tradition: Olin D. Johnston and Elizabeth J. Patterson," on display in the Hollings Library now through April 21.

"In the Family Tradition" focuses on the lives and careers of two of South Carolina’s Congressional representatives: U.S. Senator Olin D. Johnston (1896-1965) and Congresswoman Elizabeth “Liz” Patterson (1939- ), who also happened to be father and daughter. Johnston served two terms as South Carolina governor, 1935-1939 and 1943-1945, before serving twenty years as U.S. Senator, beginning in 1945.  Patterson held local offices and was a state senator before becoming the Congressional representative for South Carolina's Fourth District, 1987-1993.  Upon her first elective victory, winning a seat on the Spartanburg County Commission in 1975, Congressman Butler Derrick wrote her a congratulatory note, commenting that her win was "Truly in the family tradition."

The Johnstons’ family life is prominently featured in the exhibit, as well as campaign items and materials relating to the public service of Johnston and Patterson. Patterson’s desk from her tenure as a state senator is also on display.

The South Carolina Political Collections Gallery is located in the Ernest F. Hollings Special Collections Library, which is accessed through Thomas Cooper Library on the USC campus. Regular building hours are 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday - Friday. For more information, visit