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Harold T. Johnson

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bizz Johnson
Harold T. 'Bizz' Johnson.jpg
Chair of the House Committee on Public Works
In office
January 3, 1977 – January 3, 1981
Preceded byRobert E. Jones Jr.
Succeeded byJames J. Howard
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from California
In office
January 3, 1959 – January 3, 1981
Preceded byClair Engle
Succeeded byEugene A. Chappie
Constituency2nd District (1959-1975)
1st District (1975-1981)
Personal details
Harold Terry Johnson

(1907-12-02)December 2, 1907
Broderick, California, U.S.
DiedMarch 16, 1988(1988-03-16) (aged 80)
Sacramento, California, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Albra Irene Manuel (1937–1983; her death)
This picture was taken after the 7-mile marker along the Bizz Johnson trail
This picture was taken after the 7-mile marker along the Bizz Johnson trail

Harold Terry "Bizz" Johnson (December 2, 1907 – March 16, 1988) was an American politician from California and a member of the Democratic Party.


Born in Broderick, California, Johnson earned his lifelong nickname "Bizz" at age four when his uncle observed him leading the other children and compared him to Bismarck. He attended public school in Roseville and the University of Nevada. He worked for the Pacific Fruit Express Company, starting as a clerk before rising to a supervisory position, and was a district chairman of the Brotherhood of Railway Clerks.[1][2]

Johnson entered politics as a trustee of the Roseville school board in 1941, was elected to the Roseville city council in 1943, and served as mayor of Roseville. In 1948, he was elected to the California State Senate representing Placer, Nevada and Sierra counties. In the legislature, he supported the creation of a four-lane highway across the Sierra Nevada that eventually became Interstate 80. He also sponsored legislation to ensure that the 1960 Winter Olympics would be held in Squaw Valley.[1][2]

Johnson was elected to his first of eleven terms to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1958, eventually becoming chairman of the Committee on Public Works and Transportation in 1977. He was a proponent of the Auburn Dam on the American River, however the project never came to fruition. He was known as a stubborn negotiator and resisted efforts to transfer control of Washington Union Station from the Interior Department to the Transportation Department.[1][2][3]

Johnson was reelected by comfortable margins, even as the district turned more conservative. However, Johnson lost reelection to Republican state assemblyman Eugene A. Chappie in 1980 on the back of former California Governor Ronald Reagan's strong victory in that year's presidential election, falling to only 39.8 percent of the vote. After his defeat, he continued to lobby for uncompleted projects that had been authorized when he in office.[2] Proving just how Republican this district was, a Democrat has only cracked the 40 percent barrier six times since Johnson left office.

Johnson married Albra Irene Manuel of Roseville in 1937, remaining together to her death in 1983, and had a son and daughter. He died on March 16, 1988 at a Sacramento hospital at the age of 80.[2]



  1. ^ a b c United States Congress. "Harold T. Johnson (id: J000135)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  2. ^ a b c d e "H.T. Johnson; Served 22 Years in Congress". United Press International. Los Angeles Times. 1988-03-18. Retrieved 2018-07-26.
  3. ^ Harden, Blaine (1980-11-18). "Bizz Johnson's Domain". Washington Post. Retrieved 2018-07-27.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Jerrold Seawell
Member California State Senate, 7th District
Succeeded by
Ronald G. Cameron
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Clair Engle
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
Donald H. Clausen
Preceded by
Donald H. Clausen
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Eugene A. Chappie
Preceded by
Robert E. Jones
Chairman of House Transportation Committee
Succeeded by
James J. Howard
New Jersey
This page was last edited on 21 October 2020, at 22:31
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