The 1924 Senate Race in Tennessee, II

The 1924 Senate Race in Tennessee, II

By Ray Hill Tennessee’s senior United States senator, John Knight Shields, was a candidate for a third term in 1924.  Shields faced two formidable opponents inside the Democratic primary: General Lawrence D. Tyson of Knoxville and former state Supreme Court Justice Nathan L. Bachman of Chattanooga.  All three candidates hailed from East Tennessee and Shields […]

Watkins Overton, ‘Mr. Crump’s Mayor’

Watkins Overton, ‘Mr. Crump’s Mayor’

By Ray Hill Samuel Watkins Overton, Jr. came from one of Tennessee’s most prominent families; Overton was the great-great grandson of Judge John Overton, a contemporary of General Andrew Jackson and the founder of Memphis. Overton joined the law firm founded by Senator Kenneth D. McKellar in 1922. An aristocrat by Tennessee standards, Watkins Overton […]

The Last Years of Lawrence D. Tyson, II

The Last Years of Lawrence D. Tyson, II

By Ray Hill Lawrence Davis Tyson, Tennessee’s junior United States senator, was a wealthy former general, industrialist and newspaper publisher. Tyson and his wife, the former Bettie McGhee, lived in a beautiful home in Knoxville. Senator Tyson, tall, with a full head of white hair and neatly trimmed moustache, was especially interested in matters relating […]

Tennessee Governors & the Path to the US Senate, IXX

Tennessee Governors & the Path to the US Senate, IXX

By Ray Hill Pulaski Congressman Ross Bass had defeated Governor Frank Clement for the Democratic nomination to succeed the late Senator Estes Kefauver.  Bass faced Republican Howard Baker in the general election.  It was the first time Frank Clement had lost an election and his defeat had been sweeping. Congressman Bass confidently approached the general […]