Historical Highlights

The House Portrait of Science and Technology Committee Chairman Don Fuqua

June 08, 1983
The House Portrait of Science and Technology Committee Chairman Don Fuqua Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object
A veteran of the Korean War, Representative Don Fuqua of Florida served 12 terms in the House of Representatives with four terms as Chairman of the Science and Technology Committee.
On this date, the House of Representatives unveiled a portrait of Representative Don Fuqua of Florida, marking his service as chairman of the House Committee on Science and Technology. Chairman Fuqua had a longstanding interest in the U.S. space program. Appropriately, space related events are prominent in his portrait. The upper left portion of the canvas depicts the first, manned lunar landing in 1969. Below it, artist Jean Pilk reproduced one of the first images of the Earth from the moon. In the upper right, Columbia completes the first space shuttle mission, touching down on a dry lakebed at Edwards Airforce Base in California, in 1981. In the lower right two books, emblematic of Fuqua’s own career—the Florida Handbook and the Congressional Directory—sit at his elbow. The portrait’s unveiling on June 8, 1983, was a brief but ebullient event. Vice President George H.W. Bush attended, as did many members of the military and the space program. Pilk was recognized for her work on this and other congressional portraits. A noted portrait painter, she painted two other Science Committee portraits: Fuqua’s predecessor, Olin Teague of Texas, and the committee’s first chairman, Overton Brooks of Louisiana. For more than a century, the House of Representatives has collected portraits of the men and women who lead its committees. These images, a number of them produced by major American artists, provide a vital visual record of House history.

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