University of Idaho

Manuscript Group 10


Scrapbooks, 1903-1947

10 linear feet

In compliance with the terms of Senator William Borah's will, the scrapbooks were donated to the University of Idaho by Mrs. Borah. The majority were received in June 1940, having first been microfilmed by the Library of Congress (LC). A second set of scrapbooks was acquired from LC in 1950. These two acquisitions were combined and were processed by Judith Nielsen in March 1985. The Library has also acquired the microfilm of the scrapbooks (Film 1064) which is recommended to users because of their fragility.


William Edgar Borah, Republican Senator from Idaho, was born in Fairfield, Illinois, June 29, 1865, the seventh of ten children born to William Nathan and Elizabeth (West) Borah. He was educated in the public schools near Fairfield and at Enfield College. He spent two years, 1885-1887, at the University of Kansas, but had to withdraw because of illness. He then studied law in the office of his brother-in-law and was admitted to the Kansas bar in 1890.

In 1891 he moved west and settled in Boise, Idaho, where he opened a law office. On April 21, 1895, he married Mary McConnell the daughter of Governor William J. McConnell.

He first became a candidate for the U.S. Senate in 1903, but was defeated by Weldon Heyburn. He was elected in 1907 and served in that body until his death in 1940. In 1924 he became chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee; he also served on the Judiciary Committee. He was often mentioned as a presidential candidate, but not until 1936 did he actually enter any primaries; his defeat at the convention by Alf Landon was not unexpected.

William E. Borah died January 19, 1940, following a stroke.


The 56 scrapbooks and 34 folders of mounted newspaper clippings which deal with the political career of William Borah span the years 1903 to 1947, with the bulk of the items from the years 1910-1939. The bound volumes contain, in addition to newspaper clippings and journal articles, some correspondence.

In addition to the clippings, there are photographs of Borah and audio recordings of four of his speeches.


The clippings in this manuscript group are in three separate subseries. The first is a group of mounted, but unbound, clippings which are in chronological order. The second group consists of 31 bound volumes, each having an alphabetical designation, which are arranged by subject. The third group consists of 25 bound volumes which are in chronological order and have been given a numerical designation.

The non-scrapbook material in this group was placed in a separate box, but because of its miscellaneous nature it is in no specific order.


I. Clippings & Scrapbooks, 1903-1947 1-4 & o.s

A. Mounted Clippings

B. Scrapbooks by Subject

C. Scrapbooks by Date

II. Other Items 5 & o.s.



Box Folder Description Items

I. Clippings and Scrapbooks, 1903-1947

A. Mounted Clippings, 1906-1947

1 1-34 Mounted Clippings, 1906-1947 578

B. Scrapbooks by Subject, 1903-1939

2 35 A. Politics - Miscellaneous, 1906-1907 1

36-37 B, C. Politics - Campaign of 1904 2

38 D. Politics - Campaigns of 1904, 1906 1

39 E. Politics, 1905-1906 1

40 F. Haywood Trial, 1907 1

41 G. Haywood Trial; Borah Trial for Fraud, 1907 1

42 H. Borah Trial for Fraud, 1907 1

43 I. Politics - January-May 1907 1

o.s. 44 J. Politics and Miscellaneous, Dec. 1907- May 1908 1

2 45 K. Brownsville Affair, January-April 1908 1

o.s. 46 L. Taft-Sherman Campaign of 1908 1

2 47 M. Politics and Miscellaneous, 1908-1910 1

48 N. Public Land Laws and Public Land Policy, 1908-1909 1

49-50 O, P. Politics - Direct Election of Senators, 1910-1913 1

51 Q. Personal, 1911-1912 (contains photo of Borah's birthplace) 1

o.s. 52 R. Convention and Campaign of 1912 (contains photo of Borah and President Taft) 1

o.s. 53 S. Politics - Speculation on Borah for President, 1912-1916 1

3 54 T. Memoranda Relative to Republican Policies and Party Action. 1912-1916. 1

55 U. Borah for President, Convention of 1916, Contemplated Retirement, 1914-1917 1

56 V. 1922-1928 1

57 W. 1918-1928 1

58 X. Chairman Senate Foreign Relation Committee, 1922-1928 1

59-61 Y. Editorial comment on radio address of Senator Borah, July 23, 1932 3

4 62-63 Z. Supreme Court Reorganization, 1937 2

64 AA. License Bill Monopoly, 1937-1939 1

o.s. 65 BB. Borah for President, 1935-1936 1

C. Scrapbooks by Date, 1920-1939

4 66-68 1-3. December 1920-June 1924 3

o.s. 69-90 4-25. July 1924-November 1939 22

II. Other Material

5 91 Lists of Items in Borah Family Gifts to the Library, 1950-1966 3

92 Invitations, 1914-1945 6

93 Date Book belonging to Mrs. Borah, 1943 1

94 Bound volume entitled "Politics" containing handwritten notes by W.E. Borah, n.d. 1

95 Photographs, n.d. 12

96 Aluminum phonodiscs of four of Borah's speeches, 1938, 1939 14

97 Reel to Reel tape recordings of above speeches 4

98 The Biggest Steal in the World's History, compiled by Warren G. Davenport, 1937 1

99 Printing block for William Edgar Borah Memorial Library bookplate, n.d. 1

o.s. 100 Certificate of appreciation from the employees of the Chief Clerks Offices, Royal Hungarian Ministry of Justice, 1931 1

101 Wood plaque presented to members of the Senate Judiciary Committee re: Roosevelt's attempt to pack the court, 1937? 1

mg010.htm / November 1994

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