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“D” is for Dent, Frederick Bailey (1922-2019)

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“D” is for Dent, Frederick Bailey (1922-2019). Textile executive, U.S. Secretary of Commerce, diplomat. A native of New Jersey, Dent was a World War II veteran. In 1946, he joined the textile firm founded by his great-grandfather and moved south to Spartanburg. He wound up staying at Mayfair Mills, becoming its president in 1958. He was president of the South Carolina Textile Manufacturers Association and of the American Textile Manufacturers Institute (ATMI). He travelled overseas, negotiating trade agreements to limit textile imports to the U.S. In 1973, Dent was confirmed as U.S. Secretary of Commerce and continued in that office until 1975 when he was named a special representative with the rank of ambassador. Through his work in Washington, Frederick Bailey Dent is credited with an introducing energy conservation program for the National Energy Conservation Council.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.