BLANTON, Leonard Ray

BLANTON, Leonard Ray
Image courtesy Library of Congress


BLANTON, Leonard Ray, a Representative from Tennessee; born on a farm in Hardin County, Tenn., April 10, 1930; attended the public schools of Hardin County; University of Tennessee at Knoxville, B.S., 1951; in 1954, with his father and brother, organized the B & B Construction Co.; in 1964, elected to Tennessee house of representatives from McNairy and Chester Counties; elected as a Democrat to the Ninetieth and to the two succeeding Congresses (January 3, 1967-January 3, 1973); was not a candidate for reelection in 1972 but was an unsuccessful candidate for election to the United States Senate; elected Governor of Tennessee in 1974 and served from January 18, 1975, until January 17, 1979; was not a candidate for reelection as Governor in 1978; unsuccessful candidate for nomination in 1988 to the One Hundred First Congress; died November 22, 1996.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

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External Research Collections

Tennessee State Library and Archives

Nashville, TN
Papers: 1967-1972, 17.5 cubic feet. The papers contain correspondence, project files, speeches, legislation, voting records, papers documenting a trip to Vietnam, and photographs. A finding aid is available in the repository and online.
Papers: 1975-1979, 261 boxes. Papers of Governor Ray Blanton, 1975-1979.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Hillin, Hank. FBI Codename TENNPAR: Tennessee's Ray Blanton Years. Edited by David Fox. Nashville, Tenn.: Pine Hall Press, 1985.

Ralph Nader Congress Project. Citizens Look at Congress: Ray Blanton, Democratic Representative from Tennessee. Washington, D. C.: Grossman Publishers, 1972.

Rawlins, Bill. Tennessee's Blanton Years: A Political Biography. Nashville, Tenn.: Red Desert Publishers, 2001.

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