Gillis William Long
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Gillis William Long

Gillis William Long
Gillis William Long.jpg
Long as U.S. Representative
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Louisiana's 8th district

January 3, 1963 - January 3, 1965
Harold B. McSween
Speedy Long

January 3, 1973 - January 20, 1985
Speedy Long
Catherine Small Long
Personal details
Born(1923-05-04)May 4, 1923
Winnfield, Louisiana, U.S.
DiedJanuary 20, 1985(1985-01-20) (aged 61)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Resting placeAlexandria National Cemetery, Pineville, Louisiana
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Catherine Small Long (1924-2019)
Children2
EducationLouisiana State University (BA, JD)
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/serviceUnited States Army
Years of service1941-1947
RankUS-O3 insignia.svg Captain
Battles/warsWorld War II
AwardsBronze Star Medal
Purple Heart
Campaign medal (5)

Gillis William Long (May 4, 1923 - January 20, 1985) was an American politician and lawyer who served as a U.S. Representative from Louisiana. He was a member of the Long family and was the nephew of former governors Huey Long and Earl Long and the cousin of Senator Russell B. Long.

Early life

Long was born on May 4, 1923, in Winnfield, Louisiana, to Floyd Harrison Long and Birdie Long. His family moved to Pineville when he was a teenager and he attended Bolton High School. When his cousin Earl Long was running for Lieutenant Governor of Louisiana, Gillis gave campaign speeches for him at his school.[1]

In 1939, Long attended Louisiana State University for law, but was interrupted when he enlisted into the army in 1941 as a private. During World War Two he received a bronze star, five campaign stars, and the Purple Heart, and served at the Nuremberg trials before being discharged as a captain in 1947. Later that year he married Catherine Small, and four years later graduated from college with a bachelor and law degree.[2]

Political career

In 1962, he was elected to the House of Representatives from Louisiana's 8th congressional district and was selected to be the assistant Democratic Whip.[3] In 1963, he entered the Democratic primary for the Louisiana gubernatorial race, but came in third place with 15% of the vote.[4] In 1964, he attempted to win reelection, but was defeated by his more openly segregationist cousin Speedy Long.[5] In 1971, he entered the Democratic primary for the gubernatorial race again, but again came in third place, this time with 13% of the vote.

After his cousin Speedy Long retired from office, Gillis Long decided to run for the House seat he had once held. He won and was re-elected six additional times. He rose to the position of Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, which he held from 1981 to 1984. During the 1984 presidential primaries, Long endorsed former vice president Walter Mondale.[6]

On January 20, 1985, Long died from heart failure in Washington, D.C., and a moment of silence was given for him at Ronald Reagan's second presidential inauguration.[7] His wife Cathy won the special election to succeed him and served one term. In 1994 he was inducted into the Louisiana Political Museum and Hall of Fame.[8]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Gillis Long Throwing Out Political Rules in Campaign". The Shreveport Journal. November 22, 1963. p. 32. Archived from the original on November 25, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  2. ^ "Gilis: No Long Has Lost a Bid". Daily World. July 28, 1963. p. 5. Archived from the original on November 25, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  3. ^ "The Making Of A". The Morning News. November 24, 1963. p. 2. Archived from the original on November 25, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ "Another Long". The Des Moines Register. August 26, 1963. p. 14. Archived from the original on November 25, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ "Cousin Speedy beats Rep. Long". The Morning News. July 27, 1964. p. 2. Archived from the original on November 25, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ "Congressman Gillis W. Long Dies At 61". St. Louis Post-Dispatch. January 22, 1985. p. 16. Archived from the original on November 27, 2019. Retrieved 2019 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ "Ronald Reagan: Second Inaugural Address". January 20, 1985. Archived from the original on August 7, 2019. Retrieved 2019.
  8. ^ "Hall of Fame Inductees". July 3, 2009. Archived from the original on July 3, 2009.

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.

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