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House Armed Services Committee Through the Ages

1809
The House creates the first of a series of select committees to consider legislation on naval affairs, including the organization and maintenance of naval forces.

1811
House leaders establish the first of a series of select committees for military affairs with jurisdiction over the maintenance and regulation of land forces.

1815
The House convenes a select committee on militias, following the defeat of a measure to establish a standing committee. The select panel is responsible for overseeing state militias, including their organization, training and armament.

1822
The House creates the Naval Affairs and Military Affairs committees, replacing the chamber’s reliance on select committees. The panels enjoy broad jurisdiction over their respective domains.

1835
The House establishes the standing Militia Committee to replace the select panel.

1885
The Naval Affairs and Military Affairs committees are granted jurisdiction over their own appropriations bills.

1911
The Militia Committee formally transfers its functions and powers to the Military Affairs Committee and is terminated.

1920
The House Appropriations Committee assumes responsibility over defense-related spending bills from the Naval Affairs and Military Affairs committees.

1946
Congress passes the Legislative Reorganization Act, establishing the House Armed Services Committee in 1947, replacing the Naval Affairs and Military Affairs committees. Rep. Walter Andrews (R-N.Y.) becomes chairman of the new panel.

1953
The committee’s jurisdiction is adjusted to formalize oversight over the Defense Department. The panel’s broad jurisdiction is recognizable today and includes responsibility for the Pentagon, military service branches and the general defense of the nation.

1962
The panel assumes responsibility for authorizing the construction of military housing.

1977
The Armed Services Committee assumes jurisdiction over military applications of nuclear energy following the abolition of the Joint Atomic Energy Committee.

1986
The committee shares jurisdiction with the Interior and Insular Affairs Committee over a resolution regarding continued operation of the Hanford nuclear reactor in Washington state to produce power for the Bonneville Power Administration.

1995
Republicans assume control of the House and rename the panel the on National Security Committee during the 104th and 105th Congresses. Rep. Floyd Spence (R-S.C.) becomes Armed Services chairman.

1999
Congress changes the panel’s name back to the Armed Services Committee.

2007
Democrats assume control of the House in the 110th Congress. Rep. Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) becomes Armed Services chairman.

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