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What are the rules on this matter?

In 1955, who sworn in Sam Rayburn? Sam Rayburn was Dean of the House during January 3, 1953 to November 16, 1961.

Where can I find the official records on the swearing-in ceremonies?

  • I suspect that in order to answer this, someone is going to have to track down a copy of the relevant Congressional Record. Unfortunately, that time period isn't generally digitized. – Bobson Nov 9 '15 at 13:02
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This is from the Schenectady NY Gazette, printed on January 5th, 1955, two days after the 84th Congress began.

RAYBURN, who arrived here from Bonham, Txas, on March 4, 1913, took the oath from Representative Carl Vinson (D), who came here from Milledgeville, Ga., on Nov. 3, 1914. ~*

According to Vinson's Wikipedia page, Vinson was the second most senior member of Congress at the time, having served for 40 years. According to this article from the Rome News-Tribune

The only man with enough seniority to swear in Speaker Sam Rayburn was Sixth District Congressman Carl Vinson, of Georgia. The custom is that the senior member of the House swears in the Speaker, and then the Speaker swears in the other members of the lower legislative body.

This implies that, when the most senior member of the House is the one becoming the Speaker, it is the next most senior member who does the swearing in.

I searched for the Schenectady article using this website.

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