BOLLING, Richard Walker

BOLLING, Richard Walker
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives, Gift of Nona Bolling
About this object


BOLLING, Richard Walker, (great–great–grandson of John Williams Walker and great–great–nephew of Percy Walker), a Representative from Missouri; born in New York City, May 17, 1916; attended grade schools and Phillips Exeter Academy, Exeter, N.H.; at the age of fifteen, upon his father's death, returned to his home in Huntsville, Ala.; B.A., 1937, M.A., 1939, University of the South, Sewanee, Tenn.; graduate studies, Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn., 1939-1940; taught at Sewanee Military Academy in 1938 and 1939; served as assistant to the head of the Department of Education, Florence State Teachers College, in Alabama, in 1940; educational administrator by profession; entered the United States Army as a private in April 1941, and served until discharged as a lieutenant colonel in July 1946, with four years' overseas service in Australia, New Guinea, Philippines, and in Japan as assistant to chief of staff to General MacArthur; awarded the Legion of Merit and Bronze Star Medal; veterans' adviser at the University of Kansas City in 1946 and 1947; elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-first and to the sixteen succeeding Congresses (January 3, 1949-January 3, 1983); chairman, Select Committee on Committees of the House (Ninety-third Congress), Joint Economic Committee (Ninety-fifth Congress); Committee on Rules (Ninety-sixth and Ninety-seventh Congresses); was not a candidate for reelection in 1982 to the Ninety-eighth Congress; was a resident of Washington, D.C., until his death there on April 21, 1991.

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

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External Research Collections

University of Missouri

Kansas City, MO
Papers: 1948-1982, 405 feet. The collection of Richard Walker Bolling contains internal memos, legislation, appointment schedules, clippings, invitations, constituent requests, and other documents generated during his term in office. There are also memos, published and unpublished reports, scrapbooks, schedules, invoices, bills, letters, photographs, audio and video tapes, film strips and other assorted media. Richard Bolling's papers provide original, firsthand insight into a variety of national issues, including civil rights, labor reform, the federal budget process, and liberalism. In particular, the collection pertains to Richard Bolling's most direct and lasting influence as a participant in the efforts to reform Congress in the early 1970s. He was arguably the most important player in this reform movement and he was largely responsible for bringing to the floor many of the committee rules and structural changes considered during the 93rd Congress (1973-74). As chair of the Select Committee on Committees at this time, Richard Bolling spearheaded this reform movement which transformed the legislative process during the 1970s and created our current system. A preliminary inventory is available in the repository.

Columbia University
Oral History Archives

New York, NY
Oral History: 1983, 631 leaves. Reminiscences of Richard Walker Bolling: Oral history, 1983. The interview was conducted by Ed Edwin. Topics discussed include background and early education; Army duty in Pacific, 1941-1946, on General MacArthur's staff; vice chairman of American Veterans Committee, 1946-1947; election to United States House of Representatives, 1948; political problems of first term; functioning of the House of Representatives, 1948-1982: committee work on Banking, Joint Economic and Rules committees, civil rights; legislative strategy of Kennedy administration; impressions of Presidents Harry Truman, Lyndon Johnson, and John F. Kennedy; Sam Rayburn and other political leaders.

Lyndon B. Johnson Library

Austin, TX
Oral History: 1969, 41 pages. The interview with Richard Bolling was conducted on February 27, 1969.

John F. Kennedy Library

Boston, MA
Oral History: 1965, 66 pages.

Truman Presidential Museum and Library

Independence, MO
Oral History: 1988, amount unknown. The interview with Richard Bolling was conducted by Niel M. Johnson on October 21, 1988. The transcript is available in the repository and online.

University of Kansas Libraries
Wilcox Collection of Contemporary Political Movements

Lawrenceville, KS
Papers: 1979, 1 folder. Ephemeral materials of Richard Walker Bolling.
Papers: In the Concerned Kansas Citizens Committee Records, 1970, 1 folder. A citizen group opposed to the re-election of Richard Bolling as Missouri 5th District U.S. Representative.

University of Oklahoma
Carl Albert Center Congressional Archives

Norman, OK
Papers: In the Carl Bert Albert Congressional Papers, ca. 1910-1976, 1000 cubic feet. Other authors include Richard Walker Bolling. An inventory is available in the repository.

University of Oklahoma
The Julian P. Kanter Political Commercial Archive, Department of Communication

Norman, OK
Film Reel: 1972, 1 commercial on 1 film reel. Commercials used during Richard Walker Bolling's campaign for the 1972 U.S.congressional election in District 5 of Missouri, Democratic Party.

University of Virginia
Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library

Charlottesville, VA
Oral History: In the Bruce J. Dierenfield Oral history Interviews, 1975-1984, 27 sound cassettes. People interviewed include Dick Bolling.
Papers: In the Papers Relating to Bruce J. Dierenfield's Biography of Howard W. Smith, 1978-1985, approximately 150 items. Persons represented include Dick Bolling.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Bolling, Richard Walker. "Committees in the House." Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 411 (January 1974): 1-14.

___. Defeating the Leadership Nominee in the House Democratic Caucus. Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1965.

___. House Out of Order. New York: Dutton, 1965.

___. "Management of Congress." Public Administration Review 35 (September 1975): 490-4.

___. "Money in Politics." Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science 486 (July 1986): 76-85.

___. Power in the House: A History of the Leadership of the House of Representatives. New York: P utnam, 1974.

___. "What the New Congress Needs Most: Concerning Choice of Chairmanships." Harper's Magazine 234 (January 1967): 79-81.

Bolling, Richard, and John Bowles. America's Competitive Edge: How to Get Our Country Moving Again. New York: McGraw-Hill Bok Company, Inc., 1982.

Lowe, David E. "The Bolling Committee and the Politics of Reorganization." Capitol Studies 6 (Spring 1978): 39-61.

Ralph Nader Congress Project. Citizens Look at Congress: Richard Bolling, Democratic Representative from Missouri. Washington, D. C.: Grossman Publishers, 1972.

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