Key Dates in
On-line version of the 40-page introduction to Everett Dirksen's
memoir, The Education of a Senator.
A description of the circumstances surrounding Dirksen's death
on September 7, 1969.
of Information about Dirksen
Citations to books, articles, and news reports about Everett
Excerpts from historical documents on such topics as government
Dirksen in Pictures
Selected photographs through the years.
Cards by Dirksen
Sampling of holiday cards drawn by Everett or Louella Dirksen.
Interviewed: Transcripts, 1940-69
interview transcripts featuring Everett Dirksen from 1940 through
1969, largely the period of his service in the U.S. Senate.
Interviewed: Recordings, 1964 and 1967
C-SPAN Radio's congressional leaders series includes two programs
with Senate Minority Leader Everett Dirksen, Republican from
Illinois. The first program contains portions of two interviews
conducted in 1964 and 1967where Sen. Dirksen talks about his
childhood, the 1952 Republican National Convention, his work
on the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and his relationships with President
John Kennedy and President Lyndon Johnson. The second program
features a 1964 interview with NBC's Len O'Connor during which
the Senate Minority Leader discusses his family, his start
in public service, his relationships with President John Kennedy
and President Lyndon Johnson, his role at the 1952 Republican
National Convention, and the 1964 presidential race (audio
courtesy of the Chicago Historical Society).
Dirksen in Cartoons
A special website devoted to editorial cartoons featuring Dirksen
here, a billion there . . ."
Did Everett Dirksen ever say the phrase popularly attributed
Abraham Lincoln and the Illinois Congressional District
As part of the Bicentennial Celebration of Abraham Lincoln, the Dirksen Congressional Center is pleased to present a version of the Lincoln legacy through the eyes of two members of Congress, Everett McKinley Dirksen and Robert H. Michel, who later represented the central Illinois congressional district that once sent Lincoln to the House of Representatives.
Scanned images of a staff-prepared compilation of legislative
Analysis by Dirksen scholar Byron Hulsey who focuses on six
aspects of Dirksen's personality and character that made it
possible for him to shape some of the most important laws of
Dirksen: An Early Advocate for Civil Rights
Less well known, however, is Dirksen’s performance in a smaller theater of civil rights politics where progress came incrementally, often only for the benefit of a few. The senator’s efforts on behalf of the National Association of Colored Women’s Clubs in the mid-1950s to establish a National Negro History Week, to obtain a national charter for the organization, and to exempt it from a variety of taxes demonstrate his doggedness in supporting the NACWC’s civil rights agenda.
Everett McKinley Dirksen enjoys a well-deserved reputation for his effectiveness in passing civil rights legislation. He led Senate Republicans in the successful effort to enact President Dwight Eisenhower’s civil rights program in 1957. Dirksen provided crucial support for the Civil Rights Act of 1964. His leadership proved indispensable in passing the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The Senate Minority Leader’s presence loomed large on the national stage.
on Civil Rights: June 10, 1964
Description of perhaps Dirksen's most famous speech delivered
immediately before the successful cloture vote was taken in
the Senate on what became the Civil Rights Act of 1964.
NAACP Honors Dirksen, 2009
The late U.S. Sen. Everett Dirksen, R-Pekin, was honored for his role in passing the 1964 Civil Rights Act at the annual banquet of the local NAACP chapter. Featured speakers were the Rev. Phillip Cousin, retired bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church, and Frank Mackaman, director of the Dirksen Congressional Leadership Center.
"The Voices of Your Classroom are the Voices of Our Future," by
Everett Dirksen [The Instructor, March 1967]
on Politics as a Career
His recommendations for preparing for a career in administrative
or elective politics.
Selections from Dirksen's public statements, 1954-69, on the
war in Southeast Asia. Topics include the role of the commander-in-chief,
the relationship between Congress and the President, the role
of the minority party in a two-party system, among others.
Senate-House Republican Leadership Press Statements
Scanned copies of Senate documents which contain the texts
of the leaders' press statements following weekly Republican
congressional leadership meetings, 1961-68. These statements
were the basis for the "Ev and Charlie" and "Ev and Jerry" shows.
The 1960s: A Multi-Media View from Capitol
The 1960s: A Multi-Media View from Capitol Hill documents
the public policy
challenges resulting from those tumultuous times using a unique
records housed in The Center's historical collections-the minutes
conferences (both print and audio) of the Joint Senate-House
From his first week in office in the House of Representatives
through 1946, Congressman Everett Dirksen personally
composed and typed weekly newsletters (while Congress
was in session) to his constituents in central Illinois. Congressional
Front, as it was called, covered the personalities,
politics, and policies of Congress and the federal government. By
the end of the run, Dirksen had written 474 of these