He attended Shady Side Academy, graduated from Phillips Andover Academy in 1941 and from Yale University in 1944, where he was a member of Skull and Bones.
He served in the United States Navy from 1943 until he was discharged as a lieutenant (jg) in 1946 with service in the Pacific Theater. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1949. He was elected in 1959 as a Democrat to the 86th Congress and to the ten succeeding Congresses.
He was not a candidate for reelection in 1980.
He served as Assistant City Solicitor of Pittsburgh from 1954 to 1957, as a member of Allegheny County Housing Authority from 1956 to 1958, and the Pittsburgh Art Commission in 1958.