Fast Facts

The House has elected or appointed employees to carry out a wide variety of tasks throughout its history. The officers’ duties are prescribed both by law and Rule II of the Rules of the House of Representatives.

More >

Doorkeepers of the House

1913 pass/tiles/non-collection/i/im_people_doorkeeper_2005_047_000.xml Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object
Doorkeepers' signatures generally appeared on all official gallery passes.
A House of Representatives officer from 1789 to 1995, the Doorkeeper was elected by a resolution at the opening of each Congress. The Office of the Doorkeeper was based on precedent from the Continental Congresses. Without debate, the First Federal Congress (1789-1791) created the Doorkeeper’s position by resolution on April 2, 1789. The Doorkeeper controlled access to the House Chamber and eventually oversaw the press in the gallery. A total of 34 individuals served in the Doorkeeper position until it was terminated in the 104th Congress (1995-1997) and many of its duties were transferred to the Sergeant at Arms, the Clerk of the House, and the newly created Chief Administrative Officer.

Two Doorkeepers also served as U.S. Representatives either prior to or after their service as a House officer. A Doorkeeper's state or territory is listed only when known. 

Congress and Years Name State or TerritoryDate Elected
1st (1789–1791) DALLEY, Gifford 1 Apr 04, 1789
2nd (1791–1793) DALLEY, Gifford Nov 24, 1791
3rd (1793–1795) DALLEY, Gifford Dec 02, 1793
4th (1795–1797) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 07, 1795
5th (1797–1799) CLAXTON, Thomas May 15, 1797
6th (1799–1801) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 02, 1799
7th (1801–1803) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 07, 1801
8th (1803–1805) CLAXTON, Thomas Oct 17, 1803
9th (1805–1807) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 02, 1805
10th (1807–1809) CLAXTON, Thomas Oct 27, 1807
11th (1809–1811) CLAXTON, Thomas May 22, 1809
12th (1811–1813) CLAXTON, Thomas Nov 04, 1811
13th (1813–1815) CLAXTON, Thomas May 24, 1813
14th (1815–1817) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 04, 1815
15th (1817–1819) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 01, 1817
16th (1819–1821) CLAXTON, Thomas Dec 06, 1819
17th (1821–1823) BURCH, Benjamin MD Dec 04, 1821
18th (1823–1825) BURCH, Benjamin MD Dec 01, 1823
19th (1825–1827) BURCH, Benjamin MD Dec 05, 1825
20th (1827–1829) BURCH, Benjamin MD Dec 03, 1827
21st (1829–1831) BURCH, Benjamin MD Dec 07, 1829
22nd (1831–1833) CARR, Overton MD Dec 07, 1831
23rd (1833–1835) CARR, Overton MD Dec 03, 1833
24th (1835–1837) CARR, Overton MD Dec 15, 1835
25th (1837–1839) CARR, Overton MD Sep 04, 1837
26th (1839–1841) FOLLANSBEE, Joseph MA Dec 23, 1839
27th (1841–1843) FOLLANSBEE, Joseph MA Jun 09, 1841
28th (1843–1845) DOW, Jesse E. CT Dec 07, 1843
29th (1845–1847) WHITNEY, Cornelius S. DC Dec 03, 1845
30th (1847–1849) HORNER, Robert E. NJ Dec 08, 1847
31st (1849–1851) HORNER, Robert E. NJ N/A 2
32nd (1851–1853) MCKNEW, Z. W. MD Dec 01, 1851
33rd (1853–1855) MCKNEW, Z. W. MD Dec 05, 1853
34th (1855–1857) DARLING, Nathan NY Feb 05, 1856
35th (1857–1859) HACKNEY, Robert B. VA Dec 07, 1857
36th (1859–1861) MARSTON, George NH Feb 06, 1860
37th (1861–1863) GOODNOW, Ira NY Jul 05, 1861
38th (1863–1865) GOODNOW, Ira NY Dec 08, 1863
39th (1865–1867) GOODNOW, Ira NY Dec 04, 1865
40th (1867–1869) LIPPINCOTT, Charles E. IL Mar 05, 1867
41st (1869–1871) BUXTON, Otis S. NY Mar 05, 1869
42nd (1871–1873) BUXTON, Otis S. NY Mar 04, 1871
43rd (1873–1875) BUXTON, Otis S. NY Dec 01, 1873
44th (1875–1877) FITZHUGH, Lafayette H. TX Dec 06, 1875
44th (1875–1877) PATTERSON, John H. NJ May 26, 1876 3
45th (1877–1879) POLK, John W. MO Oct 17, 1877
46th (1879–1881) FIELD, Charles W. GA Mar 18, 1879
47th (1881–1883) BROWNLOW, Walter Preston TN Dec 05, 1881
48th (1883–1885) WINTERSMITH, James W. TX Dec 04, 1883
49th (1885–1887) DONALDSON, Samuel TN Dec 07, 1885
50th (1887–1889) HURD, A. B. MS Dec 05, 1887
51st (1889–1891) ADAMS, Charles E. MD Dec 02, 1889
52nd (1891–1893) TURNER, Charles Henry NY Dec 08, 1891
53rd (1893–1895) HURD, A. B. TN 4 Sep 07, 1893
54th (1895–1897) GLENN, William J. NY Dec 02, 1895
55th (1897–1899) GLENN, William J. NY Mar 15, 1897
56th (1899–1901) GLENN, William J. NY Dec 04, 1899
57th (1901–1903) LYON, Frank B. NY Dec 02, 1901
58th (1903–1905) LYON, Frank B. NY Nov 09, 1903
59th (1905–1907) LYON, Frank B. NY Dec 04, 1905
60th (1907–1909) LYON, Frank B. NY Dec 02, 1907
61st (1909–1911) LYON, Frank B. NY Mar 15, 1909
62nd (1911–1913) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Apr 04, 1911
63rd (1913–1915) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Apr 07, 1913
64th (1915–1917) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Dec 06, 1915
65th (1917–1919) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Apr 02, 1917
66th (1919–1921) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI May 19, 1919
67th (1921–1923) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI Apr 11, 1921
68th (1923–1925) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI Dec 05, 1923
69th (1925–1927) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI Dec 07, 1925
70th (1927–1929) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI Dec 05, 1927
71st (1929–1931) KENNEDY, Bert W. MI Apr 15, 1929
72nd (1931–1933) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Dec 07, 1931
73rd (1933–1935) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Mar 09, 1933
74th (1935–1937) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Jan 03, 1935
75th (1937–1939) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Jan 05, 1937
76th (1939–1941) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Jan 03, 1939
77th (1941–1943) SINNOTT, Joseph J. VA Jan 03, 1941
78th (1943–1945) SINNOTT, Joseph J. 5 VA Jan 06, 1943
78th (1943–1945) ROBERTS, Ralph R. IN Feb 05, 1943 6
79th (1945–1947) ROBERTS, Ralph R. IN Jan 03, 1945
80th (1947–1949) MELETIO, M. L. MO Jan 03, 1947
81st (1949–1951) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 03, 1949
82nd (1951–1953) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 03, 1951
83rd (1953–1955) KENNAMER, Tom MO Jan 03, 1953
84th (1955–1957) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 05, 1955
85th (1957–1959) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 03, 1957
86th (1959–1961) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 07, 1959
87th (1961–1963) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 03, 1961
88th (1963–1965) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 09, 1963
89th (1965–1967) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 04, 1965
90th (1967–1969) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 10, 1967
91st (1969–1971) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 03, 1969
92nd (1971–1973) MILLER, William M. MS Jan 21, 1971
93rd (1973–1975) MILLER, William M. 7 MS Jan 03, 1973
93rd (1973–1975) MOLLOY, James T. NY Dec 31, 1974 8
94th (1975–1977) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 14, 1975
95th (1977–1979) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 04, 1977
96th (1979–1981) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 15, 1979
97th (1981–1983) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 05, 1981
98th (1983–1985) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 03, 1983
99th (1985–1987) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 03, 1985
100th (1987–1989) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 06, 1987
101st (1989–1991) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 03, 1989
102nd (1991–1993) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 03, 1991
103rd (1993–1995) MOLLOY, James T. NY Jan 05, 1993

Footnotes

1Gifford Dalley’s last name has been spelled “Dalley,” “Dally,” and “Dudley” in various editions of the Register of Debates.

2Election of Doorkeeper was postponed to March 1, 1851, when it was postponed indefinitely. Horner retained the duties of Doorkeeper from the 30th Congress until his removal on May 27, 1850. House Journal, 31st Cong., 1st sess., (May 27, 1850): 966; House Journal, 31st Cong., 2nd sess., (March 3, 1851): 406.

3Elected on May 26, 1876, to fill the unexpired term of L.H. Fitzhugh, who was removed from office on May 22, 1876. See, House Journal, 44th Cong., 1st sess., (May 22, 1876): 998; and House Journal, 44th Cong., 1st sess., (May 26, 1876): Addenda.

4Hurt is listed in the House Journal as residing in the state of Mississippi in the 50th Congress and in the state of Tennessee in the 53rd Congress.

5Died on January 27, 1943. See, House Journal, 78th Cong., 1st sess., (January 28, 1943): 72.

6Elected on February 5, 1943. See, House Journal, 78th Cong., 1st sess., (February 5, 1943): 86.

7Resigned effective December 31, 1974. See, Congressional Record, 93rd Cong., 2nd sess., (December 19, 1974): 2549.

8Appointed “to act as and to temporarily exercise” the duties of Doorkeeper effective December 31, 1974. See, Congressional Record, 93rd Cong., 2nd sess., (December 19, 1974): 2549.