Mike Mansfield Interview, April 9, 1999


Mike Mansfield


Don Oberdorfer



Download Audio Interview (59.5 MB)

Download Transcript of April 9, 1999 Interview (326 KB)


Mike Mansfield talks about some his relatives who are still in Montana—where they live, work, and his relation to them. Mansfield also recalls a couple times when he met with J. Edgar Hoover, the FBI Director from 1935 to 1972. Mansfield talks about his attempts to get permission for trips to China when he first became a member of Congress. He remembers meeting with President Franklin D. Roosevelt to discuss the idea. He also discusses President Nixon’s trip to China in 1972, and the correspondence with diplomats such as Chou En Lai that led to it. Mansfield gives his opinion on the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre, which he saw as unnecessary and unforgivable. Mansfield also reminisces about some of his most satisfying achievements both as a Congressman and as an ambassador.


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Document Type

Oral History


Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano), 1882-1945; Hurley, Patrick J. (Patrick Jay), 1883-1963. ; Mansfield, Mike, 1903-2001—Interviews; Mansfield, Mike, 1903-2001—Travel—China; Oberdorfer, Don. Senator Mansfield: The Extraordinary Life of a Great Statesman and Diplomat; Vorys, John Martin, 1896-1968; United States. Congress. Senate; Ambassadors—China; Ambassadors—Japan; Americans—China; Americans—Japan; Ex-legislators—United States—Interviews; Senators, United States Congress—Montana; China—Description and travel; China—Foreign relations—United States; China—History—Tiananmen Square Incident, 1989; China—History—20th century; Japan—Foreign relations—United States; United States—Foreign relations—China; United States—Foreign relations—Japan; United States—Politics and government—20th century

Original Date


Time Period

Twentieth century

Geographic Coverage

Montana; China; Japan; Vietnam



Original Collection

Don Oberdorfer Interviews with Mike Mansfield Oral History Project, OH 391, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula

Digital Publisher

University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library


Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / library.archives@umontana.edu

Oral History Number

OH 391-007

Media Type

Sound; Text

Original Format

1 sound cassette (01:30:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (12 p.: 28 cm.)

Digital Format

audio/mp3; application/pdf

Run Time

40 minutes

Local Filename

OH_391_007.mp3; OH_391_007.pdf

Mike Mansfield Interview, April 9, 1999