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Armistead I. Selden Jr. Papers

Identifier: MSS-1244

Scope and Contents

The collection contains the papers - primarily correspondence - of Armistead I. Selden, Jr., covering his years as a United States Representative (1953-1969), as well as the years he was Ambassador to New Zealand, Fiji, The Kingdom of Tonga, and Western Samoa (1974-1979).

The boxes are arranged chronologically. The boxes covering his years in the U.S. House of Representatives are, for the most part, arranged according to an indexing code based developed by Selden's secretaries based on subject matter. Within each folder the material is generally in alphabetical order by the correspondent's last name.


  • 1953-1979

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Biographical/Historical note

Armistead Inge Selden, Jr., was born in Greensboro, Hale County, Alabama, on February 20, 1921. He attended the public schools there and graduated from Greensboro High School in 1938 and from the University of the South, Sewanee, Tennessee, in 1942. He served in the United States Navy from August 1942 until March 1946, with 31 months aboard ship, primarily in the North Atlantic. He was discharged as a lieutenant. He was a lieutenant commander in the United States Naval Reserve.

He graduated from the University of Alabama School of Law in 1948 and was admitted to the bar in 1948 when he commenced his practice in Greensboro, Alabama. He was a member of the Alabama house of representatives in 1951 and 1952, and then elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-third Congress. He was reelected to the seven succeeding Congresses (January 3, 1953-January 3, 1969. In 1968 he was unsuccessful in a bid for the nomination to the United States Senate. He resumed his law practice until October 1970 when he was appointed Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense (International Security Affairs) where he served from October 1970 through February 1973. In 1974 he was appointed Ambassador to New Zealand, Fiji, The Kingdom of Tonga, and Western Samoa where he served until 1979. In 1980, Selden was unsuccessful in his final bid for the Republican nomination to the U.S. Senate from Alabama.

Selden was president of the American League for Exports and Security Assistance from 1980-1985. He was a resident of Greensboro, Alabama, and Falls Church, Virginia., until his death in Birmingham, Alabama, on November 14, 1985. He is interred in Greensboro City Cemetery, Greensboro, Alabama.


122 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



Papers of this Greensboro, Alabama, native who served Alabama in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1953-1969 and was appointed U.S. Ambassador to New Zealand, Fiji, Tonga, and Western Samoa in 1974.

Physical Location

These materials are stored at our off-site Archival Facility (AF) and may require up to two business days for retrieval and delivery for use in our Hoole Library reading room. Please email or call 205-348-0500 for more information.


To provide faster access to our materials, this finding aid was published without formal and final review. Email us at if you find mistakes or have suggestions to make this finding aid more useful for your research.

Processed by

Martha Bace, 2011
Guide to the Armistead I. Selden Jr. Papers
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266