THOMPSON, Fred Dalton (1942-2015)
Senate Years of Service: 1994-2003

THOMPSON, FRED DALTON, a Senator from Tennessee; born in Sheffield, Ala., on August 19, 1942; attended the public schools in Lawrenceburg, Tenn.; graduated from Memphis State University 1964; received J.D. degree from Vanderbilt University 1967; admitted to the Tennessee bar in 1967 and commenced the practice of law; assistant U.S. attorney 1969-1972; minority counsel, Senate Select Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities ("Watergate Committee") 1973-1974; special counsel to Tennessee Governor Lamar Alexander 1980; special counsel, Senate Committee on Foreign Relations 1980-1981; special counsel, Senate Intelligence Committee 1982; member, Tennessee Appellate Court Nominating Commission 1985-1987; actor; elected as a Republican to the United States Senate in the November 8, 1994, special election to fill the unexpired portion of the term ending January 3, 1997, left vacant by the resignation of Albert Gore, Jr.; took the oath of office on December 2, 1994; reelected in 1996 for the term ending January 3, 2003; not a candidate for reelection in 2002; chair, Committee on Governmental Affairs (One Hundred Fifth and One Hundred Sixth Congresses; One Hundred Seventh Congress [January 20, 2001-June 6, 2001]); resumed acting career; resided in Nashville, Tenn., until his death there November 1, 2015; interment in Mimosa Cemetery, Lawrenceburg, Tenn..

University of Tennessee
Modern Political Archives
Knoxville, TN
Papers: 1994-2002. 367 feet. Correspondence, notes, memoranda, reports, clippings, electronic records, audio and video tapes, and memorabilia documenting legislative and administrative activities of his Senate career. Included are files related to the 1997 Campaign Finance Investigation, state office files, and material from his two Senate campaigns (1994 and 1996).

  • Thompson, Fred D. At That Point in Time: The Inside Story of the Senate Watergate Committee. New York: Quadrangle/New York Times Book Co., 1975.
  • Thompson, Fred D. Teaching the Pig to Dance: A Memoir of Growing up and Second Chances. New York: Crown Forum, 2010.