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James R. Mann Papers, 1948-1998

James Robert Mann (b. 1920) represented South Carolina's Fourth District in the United States House of Representatives from 1969 until his retirement in 1979. He is best remembered for his leadership on the House Judiciary Committee as it considered the impeachment of President Richard M. Nixon.

Mann was born on 27 April 1920 to Alfred Clio and Nancy (Griffin) Mann in Greenville. He attended the public schools there and graduated from The Citadel in 1941. In July 1941 he entered the U.S. Army as a second lieutenant and by the time of his discharge in March 1946 had attained the rank of lieutenant colonel. He married Virginia Thomas Brunson in 1945. After leaving the army, he enrolled in the University of South Carolina Law School where he was editor of the South Carolina Law Review and graduated magna cum laude in 1947. Following graduation, Mann opened a law practice in Greenville.

Mann was elected to the South Carolina House of Representative in 1948 and served two terms, 1949-1952. Governor James F. Byrnes appointed him solicitor of the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit to succeed Robert T. Ashmore upon Ashmore's election to Congress in 1953. He was re-elected solicitor in 1954 and 1958 without opposition. Mann returned to the full-time practice of law in January 1963. Remaining active in community affairs, he served as secretary of the Greenville County Planning Commission from 1963 to 1967 and as vice-president for community development and president of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce in 1964 and 1965 respectively.

In 1968 Mann ran for Congress, seeking to succeed Robert Ashmore, who had announced his decision to retire as Representative of South Carolina's Fourth District. Mann defeated three opponents in the Democratic primary and Republican Charles Bradshaw in the general election.

During his tenure in the House, 1969-1979, Mann served on the Select Committee on Crime, the Committee for the District of Columbia, the Select Committee on Narcotics Abuse and Control, and the Judiciary Committee. As a member of the Judiciary Committee, he played a key role in the Nixon impeachment inquiry. He drafted portions of Article I and Article II of the final report to the House regarding Nixon's involvement in the Watergate cover-up and the abuse of Presidential powers. Lee Bandy of The State newspaper wrote that Mann tailored the language "to suit the special needs of his southern colleagues and wavering Republicans" and assure support from Democrats and Republicans for impeachment. On 27 July 1974 the Judiciary Committee voted 27 to 11 in favor of impeachment. Following his retirement from Congress in 1979, Mann resumed his law practice in Greenville.

The James R. Mann papers consist of twenty-eight and three-quarters linear feet of material, 1948-1998, arranged in five series: public papers, personal papers, audio-visual material, bound volumes, and clippings. The public papers series (nineteen linear feet) is divided into three sub-series: South Carolina House of Representatives, U.S. House of Representatives, and speeches. The South Carolina House materials, 1949-1952, consist chiefly of correspondence from constituents and members of the General Assembly regarding issues such as education, income tax, and highways.

The U.S. House materials, 1969-1978, consist of general papers, bills, Judiciary Committee records, and voting records. General papers are arranged chronologically by year and include general files of correspondence and memoranda followed by topical files. Much of the correspondence consists of carbon copies of Mann's replies to constituent letters which are not present in the collection. The years 1970-1972 contain correspondence from congressmen, cabinet members, and the President.

Significant topical files include those regarding the Select Committee on Crime, the Powers of the Presidency Conference, the Democratic Research Organization Committee to Investigate a Balanced Federal Budget, and the Informal House Textile Committee. The Informal House Textile Committee file, 1975-1978, reflects Mann's activities as chairman of this bipartisan committee of more than one hundred House members. Included are a copy of H.Res. 856, introduced by Mann, regarding reciprocal foreign trade policies, as well as correspondence with Presidents Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and Mann's fellow committee members. Mann joined the Committee to Investigate a Balanced Federal Budget, created by the Democratic Research Organization, in 1976. Committee records include statements made during hearings in March, April, and May 1976 for the purpose of "formulating and developing the language for a concept that will bring about a balanced federal budget."

Judiciary Committee files, 1973-1978, consist of correspondence, analyses, testimony, and research materials chiefly concerning the Nixon impeachment inquiry, Nixon's pardon, and the nominations of Gerald Ford and Nelson Rockefeller as Vice-President. Files also document Mann's work as a member of the Subcommittee on Criminal Justice on the Speedy Trial Act of 1974 and the Criminal Code Reform Act of 1978. Files pertaining to Ford's nomination consist chiefly of research materials and excerpts of hearing testimony. General files contain correspondence with the White House, congressional memoranda regarding the proceedings, and statements made on the floor of the House. Research materials describe Ford's background and career, analyze his philosophy, and examine the implications of the twenty-fifth amendment to the Constitution regarding presidential succession. Testimony files include excerpts and lists of possible questions. Transcripts of the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration nomination hearings and the unedited stenographic minutes of the House Committee on the Judiciary are also included in this series.

Impeachment inquiry files dating from 1973 chiefly consist of hearing testimony, evidence, and correspondence from constituents on whether or not impeachment inquiry sessions should commence. The majority of the letters advocate impeachment inquiry proceedings and reflect a distrust of President Nixon after he fired Watergate special prosecutors Archibald Cox and William Ruckelshaus. Files for 1974 contain correspondence, extensive hearing testimony and evidence, committee prints, drafts and a copy of the final report, and research materials. The general file contains assessments of the evidence the committee reviewed and a draft of the minority opinion. Constituent correspondence and telephone messages reflect considerable support for impeachment. While many letters refer to strong support for Nixon in the Fourth District, few pro-Nixon letters are found in the collection.

Impeachment inquiry hearings files contain testimony and evidence, chiefly in bound volumes. Statements of Information were selected from the Senate Select Committee hearings and printed for the House Judiciary Committee. House stenographic minutes are the unedited transcripts of the House Judiciary Committee Hearings, July 1974. Photocopies of evidence submitted during the hearing accompany the relevant testimony. Of particular interest is the Comparisons of White House and Judiciary Committee Transcripts of Eight Recorded Presidential Conversations comparing selections from the transcripts the President submitted to the Committee in April 1974 and the same passages as transcribed by the Impeachment Inquiry staff. Other impeachment related topical files include the Index to Investigative Files, an "index to the source materials accumulated by the impeachment inquiry staff of the House Committee on the Judiciary." These materials include testimony transcripts and evidence placed before the Senate Select Committee (SSC) or the House Judiciary Committee.

Personal papers are divided into general papers and campaign records. General papers chiefly consist of correspondence and memoranda, 1948-1978, concerning political affairs and particularly the Democratic Party. Of interest are drafts of Mann's acceptance speech as chairman of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, January 1965. Campaign records document Mann's 1948 campaign for the South Carolina House, his five campaigns for Congress, and his efforts in 1962 and 1966 to help elect Ernest F. Hollings to the U.S. Senate. Donor: The Hon. James Robert Mann.

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