Clement J. Zablocki Papers, 1936-1986
Scope and Content

The Zablocki Papers document the political career of the U.S. Representative (Dem.) from the 4th Congressional District of Wisconsin, 1949-1983, who was primary author of the War Powers Resolution of 1973 and chaired the House Committee on International Relations/Foreign Affairs from 1977 until his death.

Marquette acquired the bulk of the collection in 1984, following Representative Zablocki's death. (He had committed his papers to his alma mater in 1965.) George Berdes, a longtime legislative aide to the Congressman, donated his War Powers Resolution files in 1986.

The Zablocki Papers are divided into 21 series within five subgroups:

Personal and Political Papers, 1936-1983

Series PP-1, Correspondence and Subject Files, 1936-1983, contains financial disclosure and general biographical information, patronage files for major appointments (including John Gronouski's selection as Postmaster General), and documentation of Zablocki's service in the Air Force Reserve.

Series PP-2, Elections/Politics, 1948-1983, documents Zablocki's political campaigns and his relations with state and national Democratic Party officials, including his intervention to secure the dismissal of Paul Corbin from his position with the Democratic National Committee.

Series PP-3, Newspaper Clippings, 1949-1983, documents press coverage of Zablocki. The bulk dates from his selection as chair of the House International Relations Committee in 1977.

Series PP-4, Scrapbooks, 1942-1966, contains clippings from the first three decades of Zablocki's political career. One scrapbook dates from his period of service in the Wisconsin State Senate, the only documentation of those years in the collection.

Series PP-5, Schedules, 1964-1983, documents the Congressman's scheduled appointments.

Foreign Affairs Records, 1949-1986

Series FA-1, Foreign Affairs Committee, 1949-1983, contains two sub-series: Series FA-1.1, General Correspondence, 1949-1983; and Series FA-1.2, Chairman's Election Files, 1976-1977. The latter series consists of correspondence, newsclippings, and memoranda concerning the challenge to Zablocki's chairmanship from Representative Benjamin Rosenthal.

Series FA-2, Foreign Affairs Subcommittees and Intelligence Committee, 1957-1983, contains three sub-series relating to Zablocki's service on these bodies: Series FA-2.1, Far East and Pacific Subcommittee Files, 1957-1968, 1971; Series FA-2.2, International Security and Scientific Affairs Subcommittee Files, 1969-1983; and Series FA-2.3, Intelligence Committee Files, 1977-1983. The Philippine War Claims controversy is particularly well documented.

Series FA-3, Subject Files, 1951-1986,contains three sub-series: Series FA-3.1, General Subject Files, 1951-1983; FA-3.2, Legislative Subject Files, 1955-1983; and FA3.3, War Powers Resolution Files of George R. Berdes, 1970-1986.

Series FA-4, Trip Files, 1951-1983, consists of correspondence, memoranda, and publications and reports documenting fact-finding delegations, meetings, and other official trips abroad in which Zablocki participated.

Legislative Records, 1949-1983

Series L-1, Bill Files, contains information on public legislation introduced or co-sponsored by Zablocki.

Series L-2 and L-3 consist of Zablocki's Congressional Record inserts and his voting record and Roll Call Subject Guide for each Congressional session, respectively.

Constituent Service Records, 1948-1983

Series CS-1, Issue Mail, 1956, 1959-1983, contains Zablocki's correspondence, largely with constituents, concerning pending legislation and other public policy matters in 8 topical areas: abortion/population control, civil rights, education, the Equal Rights Amendment, the Middle East, the proposed Prayer Amendment, un-American activities/internal security, and Vietnam. (This is a sample reflecting Zablocki's interest in these issues and their historical significance. Separately-foldered out-of district correspondence and mass produced pressure mail (except for examples) have been discarded. The remaining files, with the exception of those on civil rights, have been sampled; no more than one out of every ten letters has been retained; in some cases the sample is 1/100.)

Series CS-2, State and Local Files, 1948-1983, consists of Zablocki's correspondence on a variety of topics pertaining to the State of Wisconsin, Milwaukee County and its municipalities, and agencies and businesses in the county (including Allis-Chalmers, Harley-Davidson, and the Veterans Administration Hospital).

Series CS-3, Form Letters, 1949-1971, 1973-1974, 1977-1983, contains form responses prepared for use as appropriate, typically outlining the Congressman's stance on proposed legislation.

Press Relations/Media Activities Files, 1949-1983

Series PR-1 and PR-2, respectively, contain newsletters and press releases issued by Zablocki's office.

Series PR-3, Speeches, 1949-1983, consists of Zablocki's addresses, arranged alphabetically by issue or type of speech (eulogies, testimonials and tributes, etc.)

Series PR-4, Articles and Columns, 1949-1983, includes newspaper and magazine articles and columns with the Congressman's byline.

Series PR-5, Audio, Film, and Video Recordings, 1949-1983, contains audiotapes, videotapes, and films concerning Zablocki, including campaign commercials, radio and television appearances, and his Funeral Mass.

Series PR-6, Photographs, 1951-1983, consists largely of photographs of Zablocki with presidents, visiting heads of state, and other VIPs, most by a congressional photographer. Also included are portraits and photos documenting election campaigns, speeches, and overseas trips.

During processing, the following records were discarded from the collection:

Case files (requests for assistance--Social Security, appointment to military service academies, etc.)

Constituent correspondence, except as noted above


Financial records (bills, invoices, etc.)

Hearings testimony

Meeting agendas and notices

Reference matter: clippings, pamphlets, reports, etc. (unless concerning or significantly annotated by CJZ)

Routine correspondence (acknowledgements, arrangements, transmittals, etc.)

Unidentified photographs and recordings