Glenn Rupp

An eyewitness to the World War I Veterans’ Bonus March, Glenn Rupp’s House Page service included training future President Lyndon B. Johnson as a doorkeeper, as well as attending President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first inauguration and State of the Union Address.

Featured Audio

Training a Future President

Training a Future President
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Memories of training future President Lyndon Baines Johnson as a House doorkeeper during the 1930s.
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Interview recorded April 27, 2005 Deed of Gift

Abstract & Transcript

Glenn Rupp’s remarkable memory of his life as a House Page from 1932–1936, provides important insights about a variety of topics. His recollections of the daily activities of Pages and of special events, such as the annual dinners hosted by Representative Joseph Shannon of Missouri, are a personal record of the work and pastimes of the House Pages. In addition, his detailed descriptions of the Speaker’s Lobby and the Democratic Cloakroom—in terms of both architecture and atmosphere—allow comparisons of the House in the 1930s with the institution today. Rupp’s recollections of the mundane (paging a Member), unusual (helping to apprehend an intruder on the House Floor), special (FDR’s first inauguration and State of the Union address), and unfamiliar (the “Little Congress”), provide a vivid and dynamic picture of the Members, congressional employees, and the institution of the era, enhancing the history of the U.S. House.

Biography

Born in Archbold, Ohio, on October 30, 1912, Glenn Rupp received an invitation from Representative Frank Kniffin of Ohio, a family friend, to serve as a Page for the U.S. House of Representatives. Eager to find employment during the Great Depression, Rupp accepted the patronage position and began working at the Capitol in January 1932. During his first year on the Hill, he worked on the House Floor as a Democratic Page, primarily running errands for Representatives, filing copies of the Congressional Record, and obtaining bills from the document room.

Beginning in January 1933, Rupp served as a doorkeeper for the east lobby of the House Chamber. As one of the Pages responsible for guarding entry to the House Floor, he had to memorize the names and faces of all the Members of Congress. He also paged Representatives off the floor to meet Senators, Cabinet members, congressional secretaries, and reporters. Another one of Rupp’s responsibilities as a Page was to train the future Representative, Senator, and President Lyndon B. Johnson as a House doorkeeper.

During his four and one-half years as a House Page, Rupp attended presidential inaugurations, Joint Sessions, and national conventions. Due to his lengthy tenure on the Hill, he became acquainted with many Members, including the four Speakers of the House who served between 1932 and 1936: John Garner, Henry Rainey, Joseph Byrns, and William Bankhead. He also witnessed a variety of historic events, such as the World War I Veterans’ Bonus March and the end of Prohibition. Upon ending his career as a Page in July 1936, Rupp worked at the Federal Housing Administration, served in the U.S. Coast Guard in World War II, and became a salesman and manager in the paper industry. After retirement, Rupp resided in Green Valley, Arizona, until his passing on September 3, 2010.

Audio

Joint Session of Congress

Joint Session of Congress
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Account of a Joint Session of Congress in which President Franklin Delano Roosevelt addressed the House and the Senate.
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Interview recorded May 3, 2005 Deed of Gift

The Bonus March

The Bonus March
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Eyewitness account of the World War I Veterans' Bonus March in 1932.
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Interview recorded April 28, 2005 Deed of Gift

The Little Congress

The Little Congress
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Description of the staff organization, the Little Congress.
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Interview recorded April 28, 2005 Deed of Gift

Training a Future President

Training a Future President
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Memories of training future President Lyndon Baines Johnson as a House doorkeeper during the 1930s.
Glenn Rupp, Page, U.S. House of Representatives
Interview recorded April 27, 2005 Deed of Gift

Images & Artifacts

House Floor Staff at the Speaker’s Rostrum, 1930s
<em>House Floor Staff at the Speaker’s Rostrum, 1930s</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_rostrum.xml
A group of House Floor staff are featured in front of the Speaker’s Rostrum in the 1930s. Glenn Rupp is second from the left in the front row, as Speaker of the House Joseph Byrns of Tennessee presides on the dais.
Image courtesy of Glenn Rupp, provided by the Office of the Historian, U.S. House of Representatives
World War I Bonus March at Capitol, 1932
<em>World War I Bonus March at Capitol, 1932</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_bonus_march.xml
World War I Bonus Marchers camp overnight on the East Front of the Capitol in 1932, during Glenn Rupp’s first year as a House Page.
Image courtesy of the Library of Congress
Congressional Baseball Program, 1932
<em>Congressional Baseball Program, 1932</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_1932program.xml
Billing the 1932 Congressional Baseball Game as the “Political World Series,” this program predicted that the outcome would dictate the next election’s results. The Republicans won the game, but the Democrats retained their House majority in the following Congress.
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives, Gift of Glenn Rupp
About this object
Capitol Building Pass
<em>Capitol Building Pass</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_capitol_pass.xml
Glenn Rupp was issued this pass for President Herbert Hoover's address to a Joint Session of Congress marking the bicentennial of George Washington's birth. Pages often had access to memorable events at the Capitol.
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives, Gift of Glenn Rupp
About this object
Little Congress Club Card, c. 1935
<em>Little Congress Club Card, c. 1935</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_littlecongress.xml
In his interview, Glenn Rupp describes the Little Congress Club. “And they were mostly congressional secretaries, but there were Pages, and there were doorkeepers, and there were elevator operators, messengers in the post office, anybody on the government payroll, legislative payroll, could join for $2. And we would debate bills before they arrived in the House and Senate. We’d get them from the Government Printing Office, or the document room, and debate them in the old Cannon Building.”
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives, Gift of Glenn Rupp
About this object
House Page Invitation Proclamation, 1936
<em>House Page Invitation Proclamation, 1936</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_proclamation1936.xml
The 1936 proclamation inviting all the Pages to dine with Congressman Joseph B. Shannon of Missouri at the Shoreham Hotel, in Washington, D.C.
Image courtesy of Glenn Rupp, provided by the Office of the Historian, U.S. House of Representatives
President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressing a Joint Session of Congress
<em>President Franklin D. Roosevelt addressing a Joint Session of Congress</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_roosevelt_address.xml
House Page Glenn Rupp can be seen in this image of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Annual Message. Seated at the lower left of the House Rostrum, Rupp recalled that he had left his post at the chamber door to witness the proceedings.
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object
Military Service
<em>Military Service</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_peop_rupp_glen.xml
Glenn Rupp served in the Coast Guard during World War II.
Image courtesy of Glenn Rupp, provided by the Office of the Historian, U.S. House of Representatives
Glenn Rupp
<em>Glenn Rupp</em>/tiles/non-collection/o/oh_rupp_dog.xml
After his time as a Page and service in the U.S. military, Glenn Rupp worked as a salesman and manager in the paper industry.
Image courtesy of Glenn Rupp, provided by the Office of the Historian, U.S. House of Representatives