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Inventory of the Eugene Chappie Papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Eugene Chappie papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1965-1980
    Collection number: See series descriptions
    Creator: Chappie, Eugene
    Extent: 7.5 cubic feet
    Repository: California State Archives
    Sacramento, California
    Abstract: Eugene A. Chappie, Republican, was a State Assembly Member, 1965-1980. Bills introduced by him cover a wide array of subjects including welfare reform, removal of architectural barriers for the handicapped, feeding of guide dogs for the blind, and environmental protection and planning.
    Physical location: California State Archives
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the California State Archives. Permission for reproduction or publication is given on behalf of the California State Archives as the owner of the physical items. The researcher assumes all responsibility for possible infringement which may arise from reproduction or publication of materials from the California State Archives collections.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Eugene Chappie papers,LP[number]:[folder number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.

    Acquisition Information

    The California State Archives acquired the Eugene Chappie Papers following his final Assembly term.

    Alternative Forms of Material Available

    Microfilm copies of bill files are available for the years 1965-1980 at the California State Archives.

    Processing Information

    In addition, there are unprocessed records consisting mainly of subject files from 1966-1978. Also included are scrapbooks, correspondence, photos, and miscellaneous videotapes, and sound recordings. Please consult California State Archives staff.


    Eugene A. Chappie, Republican, was a State Assembly Member, 1965-1980. He was first elected to the 6th Assembly District in 1964 representing Yuba, Nevada, Placer, El Dorado, Amador, Alpine, Calaveras, Tuolumne, Mariposa, Mono, and Inyo Counties. As a result of reapportionment in 1973, his district changed to District 3 and included the counties of Butte, Colusa, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Sutter, and Yuba beginning with the 1974 elections.
    Chappie was born in Sacramento on March 28, 1920 and attended schools in Sacramento, although the family ranch was in Cool, El Dorado County. His first grade teacher gave him the name Chappie from his Italian surname of Chiappa. He was a rancher by profession and served in World War II and the Korean War. On October 5, 1941, Chappie married Paula Di Benedetto and together they had five children; Susan, Eugene II, John, Tina, and Linda. He married again in the 1980s after the disillusion of his first marriage.
    In 1950 Governor Earl Warren appointed Chappie to a vacant seat on the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors. He served on the Board from 1950-1964.
    Chappie was elected to the State Assembly for the first time in 1964. In looking back on his legislative career, Chappie stated that he often times had to obtain permission to leave the state in order to visit parts of his eleven county 6th District, which he represented. The district stretched from Death Valley to north of Lake Tahoe. He claimed to have totaled three cars and one airplane over the years that he represented that district. He was almost relieved when his district was reapportioned out of his district in 1973 and became somewhat more manageable.
    During his term in the Legislature, Chappie was a member of the following committees.

    State Assembly, 1965-1980

    • Standing Committees
    • Agriculture, 1975-1980
    • Budget, Legislative, 1974
    • Government Administration, 1969-1971
    • Government Organization, 1965-1967, 1979-1980
    • *Vice Chair, 1965-1967
    • Health and Welfare, 1969-1970
    • Intergovernmental Relations, 1971-1972; 1977
    • Local Government, 1971-1974, 1979
    • *Vice Chair, 1971-1972
    • *Chair, 1979
    • Municipal County Government, 1965-1969
    • Planning and Land Use, 1971-1973
    • *Vice Chair, 1972-1973
    • Planning, Land Use and Energy, 1974
    • *Vice Chair, 1974
    • Rules, 1969-1970, 1975
    • *Chair, 1969-1970
    • Social Welfare, 1965-1969
    • *Chair, 1966-1968
    • Water, 1965-1968
    • Ways and Means, 1972-1978
    • Joint Committees
    • Budget, Legislative, 1974-1980
    • Fairs, Allocation and Classification, 1972-1980
    • Subcommittee on Fairs and Horse Racing, 1979-1980
    Chappie was proud of the fact that he was the only Republican chair of a committee (Social Welfare) during Jesse Unruh's tenure as Speaker of the Assembly.
    As a result of his legislation concerning off-road vehicles, the Eugene Chappie Off-Highway Vehicle Park in Beckwourth Riverfront Park, Marysville was named in his honor.
    In addition, as a member of the Legislature, Chappie served as Chair of the Assembly Republican Caucus in the 1970s and served on the California Heritage Preservation Commission, the Commission on the Status of Women, and the Commission of the Californias.
    In 1980 Chappie won election to the House of Representatives and served six years as a member of Congress. He then served as a political consultant for a national public relations firm for the next few years. In 1988 Governor George Deukmejian appointed him to fill a vacancy on the El Dorado Board of Supervisors. In 1990 he lost his only election of his career when he attempted to be a full term supervisor. He died on May 31, 1992.

    Scope and Content

    The Eugene A. Chappie Papers consist of Bill Files, 1965-1980. The bill files document Chappie's legislative activity during his term as a member of the California State Legislature. Bills introduced by him cover a wide array of subjects including welfare reform, removal of architectural barriers for the handicapped, feeding of guide dogs for the blind, off road vehicles, and Lake Tahoe Basin planning.


    The Eugene Chappie papers are arranged into two series: bill files and photographs.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been associated with these materials in the Archives' automated public access system (currently in development, September 2004).


    Chappie, Eugene
    California - - Legislature - - Assembly
    Environmental policy
    People with disabilities Legal status, laws, etc.

    Related Material

    Eugene A. Chappie, Oral History Interview, Conducted in 1990 by Donald B. Seney, California State University, Sacramento, for the California State Archives, State Government Oral History Program.