West, John Carl


Biographical Note:

John West served his state and nation well as a soldier during World War II, as a member of the South Carolina Senate, 1955 to 1966, as Lieutenant Governor, 1967 to 1971, as Governor, 1971 to 1975, and as United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia, 1977 to 1981. Returning from Saudi Arabia, West practiced law, lectured on government and the Middle East at the University of South Carolina, served as Chairman of the Board of the Seibels Bruce Insurance Company, and engaged in a number of philanthropic enterprises. His public service was characterized by thoughtful and progressive activism.

Papers, 1840s, c.1857, 1905, 1924, 1938-2004, 52.5 ft.

Collection Finding Aid (pdf, 64 pages) 
(Finding aid includes an extended biographical note) 

Please Note:  Some documents in the collection pertaining to West's ambassadorship contain classified information as judged by the U.S. Department of State.  These documents have been removed or redacted by State. 

John West: In His Own Words (a digitized collection of documents from the West Papers)

Video of Philip G. Grose Book Signing Reception
"Looking for Utopia: The Life and Times of John C. West," 2011

Online Exhibit

Oral History (SCPC)

Oral History Transcript, Governor's Mansion Project

Memory Hold the Door (USC Law School)

Historic Marker Commemorates Governor John West's Boyhood Home (Article, 2000)

Web Exhibits at Modern Political Collections: Gov. John C. West (Article, 2001)

John C. West Forum on Politics and Policy (Winthrop University, 2008- )

S.C. Governors (at “SCIway”)

Related Collection: 

Gubernatorial Records (S.C. Department of Archives and History)





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