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Deputy Clerk Harry Newlin Megill Designated to Assume Clerk of the House South Trimble’s Responsibilities

August 02, 1946
Deputy Clerk Harry Newlin Megill Designated to Assume Clerk of the House South Trimble’s Responsibilities Image courtesy of Library of Congress Acting as Clerk of the House for the remainder of the 79th Congress (1945–1947) Harry Megill temporarily replaced longest-serving Clerk, South Trimble.
Due to the poor health of House Clerk South Trimble, Deputy Clerk Harry Newlin Megill assumed his responsibilities on August 2, 1946, when the House approved H. Res. 753, authorizing the “appointment of an acting Clerk.” The 24th Clerk of the House, Megill is often overlooked since he served only a two-month term—the shortest of any Clerk in House history. Megill’s understated, business-like style contrasted with that of the colorful and popular South Trimble. Trimble, who served 12 Congresses as Clerk and three terms as a Representative from Kentucky, died on November 23, 1946. Megill assumed many of his duties as Trimble's health worsened, though Trimble retained the position until his death. With the party change in the 80th Congress (1947–1949), Megill stayed on as an assistant to the new Clerk, John Andrews. Joe Bartlett, a House reading clerk who later went on to serve as Minority Clerk, described Megill as “very well informed. And the many, many details that come into running the Clerk's office, particularly in those days, the statutory requirements, and the rules of the House, as they applied to the work of the Clerk, Harry knew all of that. And he worked long hours. He really was one of those devoted people.”

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