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Thomas J. Walsh

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Title: Thomas J. Walsh  
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Subject: United States Senate election in Montana, 1918, United States Senate election in Montana, 1924, United States Senate election in Montana, 1930, John E. Erickson (Montana politician), Joseph M. Dixon
Collection: 1859 Births, 1933 Deaths, American People of Irish Descent, American Schoolteachers, Democratic Party United States Senators, Educators from Wisconsin, Montana Democrats, Montana Lawyers, People from Helena, Montana, People from Spink County, South Dakota, People from Two Rivers, Wisconsin, United States Presidential Candidates, 1924, United States Senators from Montana, University of Wisconsin Law School Alumni, University of Wisconsin–madison Alumni, Wisconsin Lawyers
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Thomas J. Walsh

Thomas J. Walsh
United States Senator
from Montana
In office
March 4, 1913 – March 2, 1933
Preceded by Joseph M. Dixon
Succeeded by John E. Erickson
Personal details
Born Thomas James Walsh
(1859-06-12)June 12, 1859
Two Rivers, Wisconsin
Died March 2, 1933(1933-03-02) (aged 73)
near Wilson, North Carolina
Political party Democratic
Profession Law

Thomas James Walsh (June 12, 1859 – March 2, 1933) was a lawyer and Democratic Party politician from Helena, Montana who represented Montana in the United States Senate from 1913 to 1933. He had a national reputation as a liberal and was President-elect Franklin D. Roosevelt's choice as Attorney General when he died.[1]

Contents

  • Background 1
  • Career 2
  • References 3
  • Further reading 4
  • External links 5

Background

An Irish Catholic, Walsh was born in Two Rivers, Wisconsin, where his father was an active Democrat and a member of the school board. He spent some time teaching in the public schools in Wisconsin. Walsh then went to University of Wisconsin–Madison and University of Wisconsin Law School and was admitted to the Wisconsin Bar. Walsh moved to Redfield, Dakota Territory to practice law. Moving to Helena, Montana in 1890 Walsh worked on injury cases involving railroad accidents and on copper litigation.[2]

Career

Walsh became a leader in Democratic Party politics in Helena, Montana. He was defeated in the 1906 election for Congress. He was first elected to the United States Senate in 1912, and served until his death in 1933. He emerged as a spokesman for President Woodrow Wilson in the Senate and supported the graduated income tax, farm loans, and women's suffrage. He managed President Wilson's western campaign against Charles Evans Hughes, which resulted in Wilson's very narrow reelection victory. Walsh, unlike many Irish Catholics, supported Wilson's foreign policy. He voted for war against Germany in 1917 and in 1919 supported Wilson's peace plans, including the League of Nations. In 1918, he ran for re-election, and in an unusual three-way election that included him, former State Representative Oscar M. Lanstrum as the Republican nominee, and United States Congresswoman Jeannette Rankin as the National Party nominee, narrowly won his second term. When Walsh ran for re-election in 1924, he defeated Frank Bird Linderman by a solid margin. In 1930, Walsh ran for re-election to what would be his fourth and final term in the Senate, and defeated Albert J. Galen in a landslide. During his tenure in the Senate, Walsh gained fame for his legal ability in the Judiciary Committee and on the floor.

In the 1920s, Walsh headed the Senate investigation into the Teapot Dome scandal that involved top officials of the administration of President Warren G. Harding.[3] He was chairman of the Democratic National Convention in New York in 1924, and of Chicago in 1932. Walsh opposed child labor, and supported women's suffrage and Prohibition.

In 1933, Walsh was nominated for the post of Attorney General by incoming President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. In late February, he married in secret to Mina Nieves Perez Chaumont de Truffin. Less than a week after their marriage, however, he died of a heart attack on the train to Washington for Roosevelt's inauguration.[3]

His funeral service was held in the Chamber of the United States Senate; interment in Resurrection Cemetery, Helena, Mont.[4]

References

  1. ^ Tribune Staff. "125 Montana Newsmakers: Sen. Thomas J. Walsh". Great Falls Tribune. Retrieved August 26, 2011. 
  2. ^ Thomas Walsh, Two Rivers Economic Development
  3. ^ a b  
  4. ^ WALSH, Thomas James, (1859 - 1933)

Further reading

  • J. Leonard Bates. "Walsh, Thomas James"; Feb. 2000American National Biography Online
  • J. Leonard Bates, ed. Tom Walsh in Dakota Territory: Personal Correspondence of Senator Thomas J. Walsh and Elinor C. McClements (1966).

External links

United States Senate
Preceded by
Joseph M. Dixon
U.S. Senator from Montana
1913–1933
Succeeded by
John E. Erickson
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