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Morris K. Udall Oral History Project

Mo Udall and favorite typewriter

Morris "Mo" King Udall of Tucson, AZ was born in St. Johns, AZ on June 15, 1922. He entered the United States Army-Air Force as a private in 1942 and was discharged as a captain in 1946 having served in the Pacific Theatre. He was awarded a J.D. degree from the University of Arizona in 1949. Morris K. Udall was elected to his seat in the 87th Congress in 1961. He served in each succeeding Congress until his resignation on May 4, 1991. Morris K. Udall served as chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Interior and Insular Affairs from 1977 to 1991. He also was the ranking member of the Committee on Foreign Affairs. He was a candidate in the Democratic primaries for President in the 1976 national campaign.

Those interviewed in this project include former presidents, former and current congress people and senators, journalists and intellectuals, key staff members and campaign aides, family members and friends. Topics covered include early Arizona history, congressional history, Alaska wilderness preservation, the Central Arizona Project, bipartisanship in a less polarized time, life on the presidential campaign trail, the beginning of the end of the Vietnam War, the beginnings of the Democratic Study Group, and the role of poker-playing in congressional politics.

The Morris K. Udall Oral History Project is generously funded by the Morris K. Udall Foundation and administered by the University of Arizona Library Special Collections. Its goal is to collect, preserve, and make available an archive of spoken recollections that illuminate the lives and careers of Congressman Udall and the Udall family. The interviews are not intended to be memorials to Congressman Udall or to the Udall family, but rather to advance an understanding of the major issues, events, and personalities of their times.

New interviews are added periodically.