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King Swope papers, 1882-1957

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Finding aid prepared by Laura A. Hess


King Swope papers




University of Kentucky Special Collections


Collection is arranged by format and subject of materials, and then chronologically within the scrapbooks.

Location note

Housed with multiple collections.

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open to researchers by appointment.

Preferred Citation Note

61M248: [Identification of item], King Swope papers, 1882-1957, University of Kentucky Special Collections.


6.69 Cubic feet

39 items, 4 boxes


King Swope, a native of Boyle County, Kentucky, began practicing law in Lexington, Kentucky, while attending the University of Kentucky law school. However, his practice was interrupted by his service in World War I. After the war, he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives (1919-1921) from the eighth Congressional District. At twenty-six years of age, he was one of the youngest members of Congress ever to assume that office. When he failed to gain re-election, Swope returned to Kentucky and opened a law practice in Lexington. In 1931, Governor Flem D. Sampson appointed Swope to a judgeship in the Fayette County Circuit Court. Swope served in that capacity until 1940, when he again resumed private practice.

In 1935, Swope, the Republican nominee, lost the gubernatorial election to Lieutenant Governor Albert B. Happy Chandler and in 1939, he made an unsuccessful bid for the Republican nomination for governor, losing in the primary to John Sherman Cooper.

Swope, King (1893 - 1961). Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Web. 06 October, 2011.

Scope and Content

The King Swope papers consists of scrapbooks, pamphlets, speeches, posters, and correspondence. The scrapbooks follow political events and issues at the Kentucky state, national, and international level and specifically emphasize Swope's political career as Fayette County circuit court judge and United States Congressman as well as his two campaigns for the Kentucky governor's office. Speeches, posters, and correspondence further outline details of Swope's campaigns. The Republican party features prominently in all materials. Many personal events and milestones in Swope's life are also included in the scrapbooks and other materials.


  • Republican Party (Ky.).
  • United States. Congress. House.
  • Scrapbooks--United States.
  • Scrapbooks.
  • Kentucky--Politics and government--1865-1950.
  • Elections--Kentucky.
  • Judges--Correspondence.
  • Pamphlets.
  • Politicians--Correspondence.
  • Posters.
  • Speeches, addresses, etc.

User Restrictions

The physical rights to the materials in this collection belong to the University of Kentucky Special Collections.

Collection Inventory

Scrapbooks, 1882-1957
Scope and Content Note:

The Scrapbooks series contains volumes that records political and historical events on a state, national, and international level. Most of the scrapbooks are composed of newspaper clippings, but there are many business and personal letters, event programs, and other items included as well. A large emphasis is placed on the Republican party and Swope's political career.

Swope, 1904-1957
Scope and Content Note:

Swope is a series of scrapbooks about the career and personal life of Judge King Swope. It includes newspaper clippings from multiple local and national newspapers, as well as letters and telegraphs, photographs, programs from various events, and political propaganda. The series covers Swope's career as United States Congressional Representative, his years as Fayette County Circuit Court judge in Lexington, and his campaign for the governor's office in 1935 and 1939. Special emphasis is given to the events and platforms of the Republican party.

Scrapbook Swope, 1919-1950
[Item: 12]
Volume 1, 1912-1921
[Item: 19]
Volume 2, 1927-1935
[Item: 20]
Volume 3, 1932-1934
[Item: 21]
Volume 4, 1934-1935
[Item: 22]
Volume 5, 1935
[Item: 23]
Volume 6, 1935
[Item: 24]
Volume 7, 1935
[Item: 25]
Volume 8, 1935
[Item: 26]
Volume 9, 1935-1937
[Item: 27]
Volume 10, 1937-1938
[Item: 28]
Volume 11, 1938-1939
[Item: 29]
Volume 12, 1939
[Item: 30]
Volume 13, 1939
[Item: 31]
Volume 14, 1939
[Item: 32]
Volume 15, 1939
[Item: 33]
Volume 16, 1939
[Item: 34]
Volume 17, 1939-1941
[Item: 35]
Volume 18, 1941-1942
[Item: 36]
Volume 19, 1942-1943
[Item: 37]
Volume I, newspaper clippings, 1904-1957
[Item: 38]
Politics, 1942-1950
Scope and Content Note:

Politics is a series of scrapbooks regarding state, national, and international politics and events. This includes Kentucky gubernatorial election, the United States presidential elections, and global financial affairs.

Scrapbook, politics, volume I, 1942-1943
[Item: 1]
Scrapbook, politics, volume II, 1943
[Item: 2]
Scrapbook, politics, volume III, 1944
[Item: 3]
Scrapbook, politics, volume IV, 1944-1945
[Item: 4]
Scrapbook, politics, volume V, 1946
[Item: 5]
Scrapbook, politics, volume VI, 1946
[Item: 6]
Scrapbook, politics, volume VII, 1946-1947
[Item: 7]
Scrapbook, politics, volume VIII, 1946-1948
[Item: 8]
Scrapbook, politics, volume IX, 1948-1950
[Item: 9]
Kentucky politics, 1935-1944
Scope and Content Note:

Kentucky politics is a series of scrapbooks with newspaper clippings about events in the Kentucky state government and politics, including gubernatorial races. Special emphasis is given to A.B. Happy Chandler and his campaigns for the governor's office and United States Senate as well as his administration as governor.

Scrapbook, Kentucky politics, volume I, 1943-1944
[Item: 13]
Scrapbook, Kentucky politics, volume II, 1944
[Item: 14]
Volume I, 1935
[Box: 2, Folder: 1]
Volume II, 1935-1936
[Box: 2, Folder: 2]
Volume III, 1936-1937
[Box: 2, Folder: 3]
1938 [Volume IV], 1938
[Box: 2, Folder: 4]
Volume II, 1939, 1939
[Box: 2, Folder: 5]
Chandler-Barkley campaign scrapbook, 1938
[Item: 18]
WWII, 1939-1947
Scope and Content Note:

WWII is a series of scrapbooks with newspaper clippings about events in WWII, both abroad and at home.

Scrapbook, WWII, volume I, 1939-1943
[Item: 10]
Scrapbook, WWII, volume II, 1943-1947
[Item: 11]
George Denny, Jr, 1882-1907
Scope and Content Note:

George Denny, Jr. is a series of scrapbooks with newspaper clippings of political discussion and commentary as well as the printed speeches by presidential candidates in the 1904 election.

George Denny Jr. scrapbook, volume I, 1882-1888
[Item: 15]
George Denny, Jr. scrapbook, volume II, 1888-1896
[Item: 16]
George Denny, Jr. scrapbook, volume III, 1904-1907
[Item: 17]
Speeches, 1919-1939
Scope and Content Note:

The Speeches series contains typed copies of speeches given by Swope and notebooks of hand-written speech drafts. There are also typed copies of various political speeches by other people.

Speeches and propaganda, 1938-1939
[Box: 3, Folder: 6]
Notebooks, speeches, undated
[Box: 3, Folder: 7]
Political speeches, 1919-1935
[Box: 3, Folder: 9]
Correspondence, 1926-1939
Scope and Content Note:

The Correspondence series contains letters to Swope from multiple persons.

Correspondence, 1926-1927
[Box: 3, Folder: 5]
Letter, 1939
[Box: 3, Folder: 4]
Scope and Content Note:

Letter was originally housed with the scrapbook Volume 14.

Campaign posters, 1939
Scope and Content Note:

The Campaign posters series contains four advertisements for Swope's campaign for the governor's office.

Star of Kentucky posters, 1939
[Box: 1, Folder: 2]
Scope and Content Note:

Posters for Swope's gubernatorial campaign. Originally found with scrapbooks Volume 13-14.

Governor's campaign posters, circa 1935-1939
[Case: 6, Drawer: 2]
Realia, 1936, 1940
Scope and Content Note:

The Realia series contains pins for King Swope from the Republican National Convention and Mrs. Swope from the American Bar Association. They are wrapped in tissue paper as two separate items.

Pins, 1936, 1940
[Box: 4, Folder: 5]
Printed materials, 1896-1944
Scope and Content Note:

The Printed materials series consists of various documents of both political and historical nature, including Republican party propaganda, materials from the Abraham Lincoln Association, and political satire.

Political, 1896-1944
Scope and Content Note:

Political contains various materials from the Republican party, pamphlets and commentary about political issues (especially Roosevelt's administration), and political satire.

Republican Party Convention Delegate Contest, 1912
[Box: 2, Folder: 6]
Political pamphlets, 1923-1944
[Box: 2, Folder: 7]
Republican printed materials, 1905
[Box: 3, Folder: 3]
Printed materials, 1925-1936
[Box: 3, Folder: 2]
Campaign pamphlets, 1896
[Box: 3, Folder: 8]
Congressional Records, 1937
[Box: 3, Folder: 10]
Roosevelt for King, 1937
[Box: 4, Folder: 3]
Le Detroit des Grandes Adventures, undated
[Box: 4, Folder: 4]
Yearbook, 1914
[Box: 3, Folder: 1]
Scope and Content Note:

Yearbook contains the 1914 Cardinal and Blue album from Center College in Danville, Kentucky.

Historical, 1941, undated
Scope and Content Note:

Historical contains various materials from the Abraham Lincoln Association and pamphlets written by Katharine Hayden Salter.

Katharine Hayden Salter pamphlets, undated
[Box: 4, Folder: 2]
Abraham Lincoln materials, 1941
[Box: 4, Folder: 1]

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