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Senator Barry Goldwater

Barry Goldwater was an American politician, five-term U.S. Senator (1953-65, 1969-87), whose unsuccessful 1964 U.S. Presidential candidacy helped launch a conservative revolution within the Republican Party.

Biographical fast facts

Full or original name at birth: Barry Morris Goldwater

Date, time and place of birth: January 2, 1909, at 3 a.m., at 710 North Center Street (now Central Avenue), Phoenix, Arizona *

Date, time, place and cause of death: May 29, 1998, shortly after 7 a.m., Paradise Valley, Arizona, U.S.A. (Natural causes)

Marriage #1
Wife: Margaret "Peggy" Johnson (m. September 22, 1934 - December 11, 1985) (her death)
Wedding took place in Muncie, Indiana, U.S.A.

Marriage #2
Wife: Susan Shaffer Wechsler (m. February 9, 1992 - May 29, 1998) (his death)
Wedding took place in Scottsdale, Arizona, U.S.A.

Sons: Barry Morris Goldwater, Jr. (b. July 15, 1938)
Michael Goldwater (b. 1940)

Daughters: Joanne Goldwater (b. 1936)
Peggy Goldwater (b. 1944)

Father: Baron Goldwater (a merchant) (d. March 6, 1929)
Mother: Josephine Williams (b. 1876 - d. December 27, 1966)

Remains: Cremated, with ashes interred at the Christ Church of the Ascension Memorial Garden, 4015 East Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley, Arizona, U.S.A.

Error corrections or clarifications

* He was not born January 1st, or the 3rd as most sources have reported. Throughout his life, Senator Goldwater reported January 1st as his date of birth in his various autobiographies and other books, because he truly believed that it was his actual date of birth. Late in life, he became aware of a birth announcement appearing in the Saturday evening edition of the Arizona Gazette, January 2nd, 1909, which reads, "At 3 oclock this morning, a beautiful nine-pound baby boy was born to Mr. and Mrs. Barry Goldwater at their home on north Center Street. It was perhaps late for the little stranger to wish his parents a 'Happy New Year' but the many friends of Barry are making up for it today by congratulating him and sending their best wishes to Mrs. Goldwater, who is getting along very well."

Senator Barry Goldwater later confirmed the above birth data revelation in an interview appearing in the January 18th, 1987 issue of Arizona Republic.

All of the following publications, in some past editions, have offered erroneous birth data on Senator Goldwater.

Americana Encyclopedia

Born This Day: A Daily Celebration of Famous Beginnings by Ed Morrow

Collier's Encyclopedia

Daily Celebrity Almanac by Bob Barry

Encyclopedia Britannica

Funk & Wagnalls Encyclopedia

Grolier Encyclopedia

Time/Information Please Almanac

Who's Who in America

The World Book Encyclopedia Year Book

World Almanac and Book of Facts

and many, many more!

It is not our intent to denigrate these fine publications, but merely to point out the above inaccuracy to prevent further dissemination of the erroneous data.

Career - Selected writing credits

Considered the architect of modern conservatism, Barry M. Goldwater championed a brand of rugged individualism, and was one of the most influential U.S. leaders of the 20th century. General Goldwater also served in the U.S. military and the reserves (1941-67), was an experienced pilot and founded the Arizona National Guard. Other positions Goldwater held, include Phoenix city council member (1949-1952), Department of the Interior, Indian Affairs advisory committee member (1948-50), and President of Goldwater's department stores (1937-53).

Goldwater never hesitated to speak his mind. His habit of speaking from the hip, produced comments that came back to haunt him for years. "There are words of mine floating around in the air that I would like to reach up and eat," he once said. It was that bluntness and candor that caused many voters in the 1964 Presidential election to fear he was a trigger-happy hawk who might start a nuclear war, and was one of the factors that contributed to his defeat. He served five-terms in the U.S. Senate (1953-65, 1969-87). In 1986, he received the nation's highest civilian award, the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Goldwater was an avid outdoorsman and an accomplished photographer best known for his Western landscapes and pictures of native Americans. His photographs of the American West have appeared in many magazines and several books.

Selected writing credits:
He was the author of a number of books including, Arizona Portraits (1940), The Conscience of a Conservative (1960), Why Not Victory?: A Fresh Look at American Foreign Policy (1962), People and Places (1967), The Conscience of a Majority (1970), The Coming Breakpoint (1976), China and the Abrogation of Treaties (1978), With No Apologies (1979), and Goldwater (1988).


The most in-depth of more than four dozen sources consulted in preparing this profile:
Goldwater, by Barry Goldwater (1988)
With No Apologies, by Barry Goldwater (1979)
The Conscience of a Conservative, by Barry Goldwater (1960)
Mr. Conservative: Barry Goldwater, by Jack Bell (1962)

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