FORD, Wendell Hampton (1924-2015)

FORD, WENDELL HAMPTON, a Senator from Kentucky; born near Owensboro, Daviess County, Ky., September 8, 1924; attended the public schools of Daviess County; attended the University of Kentucky 1942-1943; graduated, Maryland School of Insurance 1947; engaged in insurance business in Kentucky; served in the United States Army 1944-1946; Kentucky National Guard 1942-1962; chief assistant to Kentucky Governor 1959-1961; member, State senate 1965-1967; lieutenant governor 1967-1971; Governor of Kentucky 1971-1974; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate in November 1974 for the term commencing January 3, 1975; subsequently appointed by the Governor, December 28, 1974, to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Marlow W. Cook for the term ending January 3, 1975; reelected in 1980, 1986, and again in 1992 for the term ending January 3, 1999; not a candidate for reelection in 1998; Democratic whip 1991-1999; chairman, Committee on Aeronautical and Space Sciences (Ninety-fifth Congress), Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (Ninety-fifth through Ninety-seventh Congresses), Select Committee to Study the Committee System (Ninety-eighth Congress), Committee on Rules and Administration (One Hundredth through One Hundred Third Congresses), Joint Committee on Printing (One Hundred First and One Hundred Third Congresses); was a resident of Owensboro, Ky., until his death on January 22, 2015; interment in Elmwood Cemetery, Owensboro, Ky.

Broadcast Pioneers Library
University of Maryland Hornbake Library
College Park, MD
Papers: 1 audiotape (1973) in Westinghouse Broadcasting Company collection, 1945-1981.

Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives
Frankfort, KY
Papers: In Department of Finance, Office of Commissioner, correspondence files, 1970-1973 (bulk 1972-1973), mainly concerning an executive branch reorganization undertaken by Governor Ford; Department of Energy records, 1963-1978 (bulk 1974-1978); Governor's Council on Agriculture minutes, 1973-1980; and Clay Wade Bailey collection, 1970. Finding aids.

Owensboro Museum
Owensboro, KY
Papers: Senatorial office memorabilia and artifacts.

Madisonville Community College
Madisonville, KY
Papers: 1973. 1 film (silent). Dedication of the college with Governor Ford presiding.

University of Kentucky Libraries
Modern Political Archives
Lexington, KY
Papers: Ca. 1500 cubic feet. Senatorial papers covering all aspects of Senate career including legislation, correspondence, newspaper clippings, press releases, photographs, daily schedules, and district office materials. Does not include material from eight years service as Governor (1971-74) and Lieutenant Governor (1967-71). Processing in progress. Restricted.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in John Clarence Watts papers, 1951-1971.

  • Jones, W. Landis, ed. The Public Papers of Governor Wendell H. Ford, 1971-1974. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1978.
  • United States. Congress. Senate. Tributes Delivered in Congress: Wendell H. Ford, United States Senator, 1974-1998. Washington, D.C.: GPO, 1998.