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Lamar Smith Papers

Congressman Lamar Smith

Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) has announced the donation of his papers to the Briscoe Center. Smith, who is not seeking re-election, has represented the 21st Congressional District of Texas since 1987. He currently serves as chairman of the Science, Space, and Technology Committee, which has jurisdiction over NASA, the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Federal Aviation Administration. Smith also serves on both the Judiciary Committee and the Homeland Security Committee.

“I want to thank Congressman Smith for the donation of his papers,” said Don Carleton, executive director of the Briscoe Center. “His papers find themselves in good company in the center’s unrivaled congressional and political collections, which include the papers of Texas political giants such as Governor Sam Houston, U.S. House Speaker Sam Rayburn, and Vice President John Nance Garner.”

A native of San Antonio, Smith graduated from Yale University and Southern Methodist University School of Law. The 21st Congressional District has a population of around 700,000. It includes parts of Bexar, Travis, Comal, and Hays counties and all of Bandera, Blanco, Gillespie, Kendall, Kerr, and Real counties. Smith was ranked the most effective member of the House in the 112th Congress (2011–2012) in a study jointly conducted by the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt University. 

“The Briscoe Center is one of our state’s greatest resources for those interested in political history," said Congressman Smith. "I very much appreciate the center’s interest in my archives and cannot think of a more appropriate place for them than the University of Texas. It has been a wonderful honor to represent the 21st Congressional District. ”

The Briscoe Center’s Congressional and Political History Collection has a special focus on significant elected officials from Texas, including the Texas congressional delegation, Texas governors, the Texas legislators, Texas House Speakers, and political activists. It contains papers relating to the careers of more than 50 former and present members of Congress, 10 governors, and 11 Texas House Speakers.