The first segment chronicles Ernest F. “Fritz” Hollings’ early life, education, and rise to political power. Hollings graduated from The Citadel in 1942, and served for thirty three months in the U.S. Army during World War II. After the military, Fritz Hollings attended law school at the University of South Carolina. In the early 1950’s, Fritz Hollings argued against racial integration of schools.
As governor of South Carolina, Hollings opened a new era for S.C., concentrating on education, industrial development, agriculture, and state credit. Hollings also expanded South Carolina’s technical training program. It is believed that Hollings’ support of President John F. Kennedy set the stage for his loss against Olin D. Johnston for the U.S. Senate seat in 1962.
Fritz Hollings has made it tough for label makers since he votes on issues, and not on political philosophies. Hollings has the reputation of being one of the first senators from the South to break the stereotype of the “southern politician.”