Hyde Murray's book, Memoirs of an Ogdensburg Kid: Presidents, Politicians and Pals, was dedicated at the W.R. Poage Legislative Library October 3. Congressman Poage was Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee from 1967 to 1974. Hyde worked under Congressman Poage for two decades as legal counsel for the Agriculture Committee in Washington, D.C. When Congressman Poage retired in 1979, Hyde was part of the group that developed the Legislative Library. Along with Hyde's book, his political papers, films, photos, and memorabilia are housed at the library located at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.
Born in Iola in 1930, Hyde was the son of the late Reid Murray, who served as a Congressman for Wisconsin's 7th district. Congressman Murray served on the House Agriculture Committee with Congressman Poage from 1939 until his death in 1952. In 1958, when Hyde applied for a position at the Agriculture Committee, Congressman Poage interviewed him and recommended his employment. Congressman Poage became one of Hyde's best political mentors and friend.
When Hyde retired from his political career and returned to Waupaca County in 1997, he put off writing his memoirs. In 2007, Hyde's health failed and due to complications from Parkinson's disease, he resided at Iola Living Assistance, where he took up writing his book in earnest. With the help and encouragement from his family and many friends, he completed his book before he died in April of this year.
The W.R. Poage Legislative Library, dedicated in 1979, celebrated its 30th year anniversary this year and Hyde's daughter, Merri Carol Martens, traveled to Baylor University to attend the ceremony. She was invited to dedicate Hyde's book and gave a short speech to the more than 100 participants.
The book records Hyde's 30-year career in politics as a Congressional lawyer, and features the advice and counsel he gave to presidents, politicians, and pals. In the last year and a half of his life, Hyde chronicled his story, tinted by time and tempered by the historical truth that old soldiers usually fight old battles better the second time around. Yet, these stories are true and carry a message of affection and respect for the institution that has served America and the world well for two centuries: The U S Congress.