Papers of a former Republican governor (1965-1971), lieutenant governor (1955-1959/1961-1963), and state senator (1941-1955). The processed portion entirely concerns his pre-gubernatorial career. Included are correspondence (mainly 1940-1956) with family, friends, Republican political leaders, and constituents; notes; reports; speeches; press releases; campaign records from his 1940, 1944, 1954 and 1962 campaigns and from the 1950 and 1952 gubernatorial campaigns of Walter Kohler Jr.; memorabilia; and scrapbooks of photographs and biographical clippings.
Also included are files concerning various civic and financial involvements such as the Bong Memorial Foundation, the Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company, and the University of Wisconsin Alumni association; legal records and estate papers pertaining to his father, Judge Warren P. Knowles Sr.; and constituent correspondence of his brother Robert Knowles.
Among the prominent correspondents are John Byrnes, Thomas Coleman, Glenn Davis, Frank Graass, Walter Kohler, Jr., Philip Kuehn, Melvin Laird, Jack Olson, Oscar Rennebohm, Alexander Wiley, John Wyngaard, and Robert Zimmerman.
The processed portion of this collection is summarized above, dates 1910-1964 and is described in the register. Additional accessions date to 1990 and are described below.
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