A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 01, 2011
“Politicians forget they’ve been appointed and think they’ve been anointed”

Claude Pepper (1900-1989) was Florida’s United States senator from 1936-1951; he served in the House of Representatives from 1963-1989. In 1954 (when Pepper was out of office), his wife, Mildred Pepper, was quoted by “Broadway Medley” columnist Leonard Lyons: “The mistake a lot of politicians make is in forgetting they’ve been appointed and thinking they’ve been anointed.” The quote was republished in The Reader’s Digest.

Mildred Pepper died in 1979 at age 75. The “appointed/anointed” quotation is often incorrectly credited to Claude Pepper.


Wikipedia: Claude Pepper
Claude Denson Pepper (September 8, 1900 – May 30, 1989) was an American politician of the Democratic Party, and a spokesman for left-liberalism and the elderly. In foreign policy he shifted from pro-Soviet in the 1940s to anti-Communist in the 1950s. He represented Florida in the United States Senate from November 4, 1936, to January 3, 1951, and the Miami area in the United States House of Representatives from January 3, 1963 until his death on May 30, 1989.

In 2000, the United States Postal Service issued a 33¢ Distinguished Americans series postage stamp honoring Pepper.

Florida State University Claude Pepper Center
Claude Denson Pepper (1900-1989)
Claude Denson Pepper was born near Dudleyville, Alabama on September 8, 1900. He graduated from the University of Alabama in 1921 and from Harvard Law School in 1924. After establishing a general law practice in Perry, Florida, Pepper began his political career with his election to the Florida House of Representatives in 1929. While working in the State Capitol in 1931 he met his future wife, Mildred Webster outside the Governor’s office in Tallahassee. Claude and Mildred were married on December 29, 1936 in St. Petersburg, Florida and for 43 years they were inseparable.

18 January 1954, San Mateo (CA) Times, “Broadway Medley” by Leonard Lyons, pg. 16, col. 5:
Mrs. Claude Pepper, wife of the ex-senator from Florida, said: “The mistake a lot of politicians make is in forgetting they’ve been appointed and thinking they’ve been anointed.”

Google Books
The Reader’s Digest
Volume 66
1955
Pg. 128:
Mrs. Claude Pepper: The mistake a lot of politicians make is in forgetting they’ve been appointed and thinking they’ve been anointed. — Quoted by Leonard Lyons

1 November 1965, Dallas (TX) Morning News, “It Happened Last Night” by Earl Wilson, pg. A15:
REMEMBERED QUOTE: “The mistake a lot of politicians make is in forgetting they were appointed and thinking they’ve been anointed.”—Mrs. Claude Pepper.

Google Books
The Captive American
By Lee Brandenburg and Andrew Lewis Shepherd
San Jose, CA: Hampton Books
1988
Pg. 65:
Pepper’s wife seems to see things a bit more clearly than her husband does, at least on the subject of Lifetime Politicians. She once said, “The mistake a lot of politicians make is in forgetting they’ve been appointed and thinking they’ve been annointed.” I wonder what the pillow-talk was like that night.

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • (0) Comments • Saturday, January 01, 2011 • Permalink