GRUENING, Ernest Henry (1887-1974)

GRUENING, ERNEST HENRY, a Senator from Alaska; born in New York City, February 6, 1887; attended Drisler School and Sachs School; graduated from Hotchkiss School in 1903, Harvard College in 1907, and Harvard Medical School in 1912; gave up practice of medicine to enter journalism; reporter for Boston American in 1912 and, after a variety of jobs with several newspapers, became managing editor of the New York Tribune in 1917; served in the Field Artillery Corps in 1918; editor of The Nation 1920-1923; editor, New York Post 1932-1933; adviser to the United States delegation to the Seventh Inter-American Conference, Montevideo, Chile, in 1933; director of the Division of Territories and Island Possessions of the Department of the Interior 1934-1939; administrator of the Puerto Rico Reconstruction Administration 1935-1937; member of Alaska International Highway Commission 1938-1942; appointed Governor of Alaska by President Franklin Roosevelt in 1939 and twice reappointed, serving until 1953; elected to the United States Senate October 6, 1955, from the Territory of Alaska as an advocate of Alaska statehood but did not take the oath of office and was not accorded senatorial privileges; known as "the father of Alaska statehood"'; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate on November 25, 1958, and upon admission of Alaska as a State into the Union on January 3, 1959, in the classification of Senators from that State, drew the four-year term beginning on that day and ending January 3, 1963; reelected in 1962 and served from January 3, 1959, to January 3, 1969; unsuccessful candidate for renomination in 1968; president of investment firm; legislative consultant; died in Washington, D.C., June 26, 1974; cremated; ashes scattered over Mount Ernest Gruening, north of Juneau, Alaska.

Broadcast Pioneers Library
University of Maryland Hornbake Library
College Park, MD
Papers: 2 audiotapes (1966, 1974) in Westinghouse Broadcasting Company collection, 1945-1981.

Clemson University
Special Collections
Clemson, SC
Papers: Correspondence in Hugh B. Hester papers, 1945-1983 (bulk 1968-1983).

Harvard University
Houghton Library
Cambridge, MA
Papers: In Oswald Garrison Villard papers, 1856-1949.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division
Washington, DC
Papers: Correspondence in La Follette family papers, 1844-1973; Joseph Pulitzer papers, 1910-1958; Breckinridge family papers, 1752-1965; and Riggs family papers, 1763-1945. Finding aid.

Lyndon Baines Johnson Library
Austin, TX
Oral History: April 23, 1974. 28 pages.

Mississippi State University
Mitchell Memorial Library
Mississippi State, MS
Papers: 1950-1960. 4 letters.

Stanford University Libraries
Special Collections
Stanford, CA
Papers: Correspondence in J. Arthur Younger papers, 1964-1968.

State Historical Society of Wisconsin
Archives Division
Madison, WI
Papers: 1 film interview transcript in Howard K. Smith papers, 1941-1963; correspondence in Byron Price papers, 1901-1976; and National Coordinating Committee to End the War in Vietnam records, 1964-1967.

Swarthmore College
Peace Collection
Swarthmore, PA
Papers: Correspondence in National Council to Repeal the Draft records, 1968-1973.

University of Alaska
Elmer E. Rasmuson Library
Fairbanks, AK
Papers: 1914-1974 (bulk 1959-1968). 500 cubic feet. Political and personal correspondence; diaries; speeches; subject files; news clippings; notebooks; photographs; films; audio recordings; and memorabilia from his years in the Senate, as governor, director of Territories, and as an editor. Subjects include Alaska's campaign for statehood, public works in Alaska, population control, aviation, disasters, natural resources, and foreign relations, especially Vietnam. Also includes a small amount of Dorothy Smith Gruening's correspondence and guest books. Finding aid.

University of California, Los Angeles
Los Angeles, CA
Oral History: 1974. 38 pages. Index.

University of Michigan
Bentley Historical Library
Ann Arbor, MI
Papers: Correspondence in Margaret Bayne Price papers, 1918-1969; Stephen Hopkins Spurr papers, 1940-1971; and Paul Blanshard papers, 1912-1974. Finding aid.

University of Virginia
Alderman Library
Charlottesville, VA
Papers: Correspondence in Louis Spilman papers, 1947-1970. Finding aid.

University of Washington Libraries
Manuscripts and University Archives
Seattle, WA
Papers: Correspondence in Richard J. Carbray papers, 1950-1985.

Yale University Libraries
Manuscripts and Archives
New Haven, CT
Papers: In Edward Mandell House papers, 1885-1938; Harold Phelps Stokes papers, 1908-1969; Chester Bowles papers, 1924-1973; and Jerome New Frank papers, 1918-1972.
Research Libraries Information Network In addition to the institutions listed above, items are also cataloged in collections at: Columbia University, Rare Book and Manuscript Library, New York, NY; Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH; Harvard College Library, Cambridge, MA; Radcliffe College, Schlesinger Library, Cambridge, MA; and University of Pennsylvania, Special Collections, Philadelphia, PA.

  • Gruening, Ernest. The Battle for Alaska Statehood. College, AK: University of Alaska Press, 1967.
  • ___. Many Battles: The Autobiography of Ernest Gruening. New York: Liveright Publishing Corp., 1973.
  • ___. Mexico and Its Heritage. New York: Century Co., 1928.
  • ___. The Public Pays: A Study of Power of Propaganda. 1931. Enlarged ed. New York: Vanguard Press, 1964.
  • ___. The State of Alaska. 1954. New edition. New York: Random House, 1968.
  • ___, ed. An Alaskan Reader, 1867-1967. New York: Meredith Press, 1967.
  • ___, and Herbert Wilton Beaser. Vietnam Folly. Washington: National Press, 1968.
  • Johnson, Robert D. Ernest Gruening and the American Dissenting Tradition. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1998.
  • ___. "Ernest Gruening and the Tonkin Gulf Resolution: Continuities in American Dissent." The Journal of American-East Asian Relations 2 (1993): 111-135.
  • Naske, Claus-M. Ernest Gruening: Alaska's Greatest Governor. Fairbanks: University of Alaska Press, 2004.
  • Naske, Claus-M. "Ernest Gruening and Alaska Native Claims.'' Pacific Northwest Quarterly 82 (October 1991): 140-48.
  • ___. "Governor Ernest Gruening, the Federal Government, and the Economic Development of Territorial Alaska.'' Pacific Historian 28 (Winter 1984): 4-16.
  • ___. "Governor Ernest Gruening's Struggle for Territorial Status--Personal or Political?'' Journal of the West 20 (January 1981): 32-40.
  • Ross, Sherwood. Gruening of Alaska. New York: Best Books, 1968.
  • U.S. Congress. Memorial Addresses and other Tributes in the Congress of the United States on the Life and Contributions of Ernest H. Gruening. 93d Cong., 2d sess., 1974. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1974.