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John Lanneau McMillan (April 12, 1898 – September 3, 1979) was a United States Representative from South Carolina. Born on a farm near Mullins, he was educated at Mullins High School, the University of North Carolina, as well as the University of South Carolina Law School and National Law School in Washington, D.C. He was selected to represent the United States Congress at the Interparliamentary Union in London in 1960, and in Tokyo in 1961.

John Lanneau McMillan
Congressman John L. McMillan.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1939 – January 3, 1973
Preceded by Elizabeth H. Gasque
Succeeded by Edward Lunn Young
Personal details
Born (1898-04-12)April 12, 1898
Mullins, South Carolina
Died September 3, 1979(1979-09-03) (aged 81)
Florence, South Carolina
Political party Democratic
Alma mater University of North Carolina
University of South Carolina
National University School of Law
Profession Lawyer

McMillan was elected as a Democrat to the Seventy-sixth and to the sixteen succeeding Congresses, serving from January 3, 1939 to January 3, 1973; while in Congress he was chairman of the Committee on District of Columbia from 1945 to 1947, from 1949 to 1953, and from 1953 to 1973.[1] When Black Mayor Walter E. Washington sent his first budget to Congress in late 1967, Democratic Representative John L. McMillan, chair of the House Committee on the District of Columbia, responded by having a truckload of watermelons delivered to Washington's office.[4] Soon afterward, Washington was faced with riots in the District that followed the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1968. Although he was reportedly urged by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover to shoot the rioters, Washington refused. He told the Washington Post later, "I walked by myself through the city and urged angry young people to go home. I asked them to help the people who had been burned out." Only one person refused to listen to him.[5]

McMillan was defeated in the 1972 Democratic primary by a considerably more liberal Democrat, State Representative John Jenrette. He is still the longest-serving congressman in South Carolina's history, and only Strom Thurmond represented the state longer at the federal level.

He resided in Florence, South Carolina, where he died in 1979; interment was in the McMillan family cemetery, Mullins.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Harry S. Jaffe and Tom Sherwood. Dream City: Race, Power, and the Decline of Washington D.C. Simon & Schuster, 1994, p.62
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Elizabeth H. Gasque
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 6th congressional district

1939–1973
Succeeded by
Edward Lunn Young