Thomas P Gore: Oklahoma’s Blind Senator

Thomas P Gore: Oklahoma’s Blind Senator

By Ray Hill Tennesseans recall our own two senators named Gore, but there was another, who was apparently a distant cousin, Thomas Pryor Gore. T. P. Gore accomplished much and enjoyed a long and successful career in spite of being blind. Gore had suffered two different childhood accidents that left him completely blind. Thomas P. […]

The New Deal in Tennessee II

The New Deal in Tennessee II

By Ray Hill Tennessee’s delegation in Congress in 1932 was effective and able; it would make a big difference in providing jobs for desperate Tennesseans, as well as flooding the state with projects and improvements. Congressman Joseph W. Byrns of Nashville was well on his way to his eventual rise to become Speaker of the […]

The New Deal in Tennessee I

The New Deal in Tennessee I

By Ray Hill “I have got no horse no autmobel and no nothing to ride can you pleas if possible fix for me to get some help some way can you fix for me some way so my family will not purish.” So wrote a man from Newcomb, Tennessee to Congressman J. Will Taylor on […]

FDR Comes to Tennessee

FDR Comes to Tennessee

By Ray Hill President Franklin Delano Roosevelt came to Tennessee several times during his presidency.  It gave local politicians the opportunity to bask in the glow of Roosevelt’s magnetic presence and the people of Tennessee to actually see the jaunty tilt of FDR’s large head, cigarette holder firmly clenched between his teeth.  The popular image […]

Senator Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma

Senator Elmer Thomas of Oklahoma

By Ray Hill Unlike many Southern states, Oklahoma did not continuously reelect incumbent United States senators, yet John William Elmer Thomas was one of the longest serving senators from the Sooner State. When he first entered the U.S. Senate, Elmer Thomas could have come straight from central casting; tall, prematurely white haired, with a classic […]

The Man From Wyoming: Senator Joseph C. O’Mahoney

The Man From Wyoming: Senator Joseph C. O’Mahoney

By Ray Hill Wyoming today is dominated by Republicans, but during the height of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, perhaps the most popular politician in the state was a Democrat: Joseph Christopher O’Mahoney. Like the state he represented in the United States Senate, O’Mahoney prided himself on his independence. The Wyoming senator was perhaps the […]

Lassie

Lassie

By Ray Hill It is quite likely there is hardly anyone who grew up in the 1940s, 1950s, and early 1960s who cannot fondly recall the adventures of a particular collie named Lassie.  Most of us marveled at Lassie’s intelligence and bravery and her unending devotion to her owner.   Our hearts skipped a beat when […]

John Nance Garner as Vice President

John Nance Garner as Vice President

By Ray Hill Few men have been as colorful as John Nance Garner of Texas. Garner spent thirty-eight years in Washington, D. C., and the last eight as vice president under Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Yet, Garner shunned the limelight, preferring to make his considerable presence felt in the corridors of power and hidden offices of […]

The 1932 Governor’s Race In Tennessee, II

The 1932 Governor’s Race In Tennessee, II

By Ray Hill Tennessee, like every other state in the union, had been devastated by the Great Depression. The suffering in Tennessee was accentuated by the fact almost seven million dollars in state money had been lost when Caldwell and Company, one of the largest banking enterprises in the South, collapsed. That had caused Governor […]