Biographical Sketch of the Creator of the Collection
Born in New York City on February 25, 1910, Millicent Hammond Fenwick grew up in New Jersey and lived in Spain when her father served as the ambassador to that country in the late 1920s. Educated at the Foxcroft School in Middleburg, Virginia, she later attended Columbia University and the New School for Social Research in New York City.
She began her professional life as a magazine editor, and she served in that capacity from 1938 to 1952. Her political career began in the latter year, when she took a seat on the Bernardsville, New Jersey, school board. Election to the borough council followed in 1958. Her public life also included service on the United States Commission on Civil Rights, membership in the New Jersey general assembly, and director of that state's consumer affairs agency.
Fenwick's congressional service began in 1975, when she took her seat as a Republican in the Ninety-fourth Congress. Her district was New Jersey's Fifth, which included the cities of Morristown, Princeton, and Raritan. Three successful reelection campaigns followed. In 1982, however, she left her House seat to make a bid for one of New Jersey's United States Senate seats. Although she lost that race and, thereby, ended her career in elective politics, her public service continued from 1983 to 1987 as President Ronald Reagan's appointee as United States representative (with ambassadorial rank) to the United Nations Agencies for Food and Agriculture.
Late in her life, Fenwick also gained considerable national attention as the basis for the character Congresswoman Lacey Davenport in "Doonesbury," a popular comic strip featuring political satire. Fenwick died on September 16, 1992, in Bernardsville, New Jersey.
Scope and Content of the Collection
The contents of this collection tend to be of a routine purpose and consist mainly of invitations. The bulk of Fenwick's papers is housed at Rutgers University in New Jersey.