William Jennings Bryan Dorn (April 14, 1916 – August 13, 2005) was a United States politician from South Carolina who represented the western part of the state in the United States House of Representatives from 1947 to 1949 and from 1951 to 1975 as a Democrat.
William Jennings Bryan Dorn
|Chair of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee|
January 3, 1973 – December 31, 1974
|Preceded by||Olin E. Teague|
|Succeeded by||Ray Roberts|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from South Carolina's 3rd district
January 3, 1951 – December 31, 1974
|Preceded by||James Butler Hare|
|Succeeded by||Butler Derrick|
January 3, 1947 – January 3, 1949
|Preceded by||Butler B. Hare|
|Succeeded by||James Butler Hare|
|Member of the |
South Carolina Senate
from Greenwood County
January 14, 1941 – June 20, 1942
|Member of the |
South Carolina House of Representatives
from Greenwood County
January 10, 1939 – June 8, 1940
|Born||April 14, 1916|
Greenwood County, South Carolina
|Died||August 13, 2005 (aged 89)|
Greenwood, South Carolina
|Spouse(s)||Mildred Johnson (m. 1948, d. 1990)|
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Branch/service||United States Army Air Corps|
|Years of service||1942–1945|
|Battles/wars||World War II|
Dorn was born near Greenwood, South Carolina on April 14, 1916, the son of Thomas Elbert and Pearl Griffith Dorn. Thomas Dorn was a school teacher, principal, and superintendent who hoped his son would have a political career, so he named the boy after William Jennings Bryan. Bryan Dorn attended the public schools of Greenwood and Greenwood High School, and became a farmer. He attended the University of South Carolina where he was a member of the Clariosophic Society.  He was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives in 1938 and to the South Carolina Senate in 1940. He served in the United States Army Air Forces in Europe during World War II.
Dorn was first elected to Congress in the 1946 election. In the 1948 election, he unsuccessfully challenged incumbent U.S. Senator Burnet R. Maybank for the Democratic nomination. Maybank won the nomination, and was unopposed in the general election.
Dorn returned to the House in the 1950 election, and became known for his work on issues related to the military and the expansion of civil rights. He was a signatory to the 1956 Southern Manifesto that opposed the desegregation of public schools ordered by the Supreme Court in Brown v. Board of Education.
In 1966, journalist Drew Pearson reported that Dorn was one of a group of Congressman who had received the "Statesman of the Republic" award from Liberty Lobby for his "right-wing activities". In his final term he was chairman of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee.
Candidacy for governorEdit
He left Congress to run for Governor of South Carolina in 1974. He lost the Democratic primary to Charles 'Pug' Ravenel, who the South Carolina Supreme Court later ruled ineligible on residency grounds required by the state constitution. A special state convention then chose Dorn as the Democratic candidate. He was defeated in the general election by Republican James B. Edwards, one of the few disappointments in what was generally a big year for Democrats. In 1978, Dorn again sought the Democratic nomination for governor but was eliminated in a three-way race won by Richard Riley. In 1980, he was elected chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party, and he served until 1984.
In 1978, President Jimmy Carter named the Columbia, South Carolina, Veteran's Affairs Hospital after Dorn as the "William Jennings Bryan Dorn Veterans' Hospital." Dorn died in Greenwood on August 13, 2005. He was buried at Bethel Methodist Church Cemetery in Callison, Greenwood County, South Carolina.
- Dorn, William Jennings Bryan, and Scott Derks. Dorn: Of the People, A Political Way of Life. Columbia and Orangeburg, S.C.: Bruccoli Clark Layman/Sandlapper Publishing, 1988
- Moore, William V. (October 26, 2016). "Biography, William Jennings Bryan Dorn". SC Encyclopedia. Columbia, SC: University of South Carolina.
- "Page 84".
- "Longtime congressman dies at 89 in Greenwood". The Item. Sumter, South Carolina. AP. August 14, 2005. p. 6A. Retrieved June 11, 2015.
- Pearson, Drew (November 2, 1966). "Judge Rules Against Liberty Lobby". The Free Lance-Star. Fredericksburg, Virginia. p. 6. Retrieved December 14, 2014.
- Bass, Jack; DeVries, Walter (1995). The Transformation of Southern Politics: Social Change and Political Consequence Since 1945. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press. p. 268. ISBN 978-0-8203-1728-1.
- Administration, US Department of Veterans Affairs, Veterans Health. "Our History – Columbia VA Health Care System". www.columbiasc.va.gov. Retrieved 2020-04-08.
- United States Congress. "William Jennings Bryan Dorn (id: D000434)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
- A film clip "Longines Chronoscope with William Jennings Bryan Dorn" is available at the Internet Archive
- William Jennings Bryan Dorn: In His Own Words Audio clips from the Papers of William Jennings Bryan Dorn at South Carolina Political Collections* William Jennings Bryan Dorn Papers at the University of South Carolina at South Carolina Political Collections