Arthur Capper of Kansas

Arthur Capper of Kansas

By Ray Hill “If you trust the people, they will trust you.” Arthur Capper Before there was Bob Dole, there was Arthur Capper. Capper was the most successful politician in Kansas for decades. Of the many campaigns he waged, he lost only one. He served two terms as governor and served in the United States […]

The Great Depression in Tennessee

By Ray Hill   Tennessee, like the rest of the country, was suffering terribly from the effects of the Great Depression.  Despite the general impression the 1920s had been a decade of plenty and prosperity, that was not entirely true in the South. Tennessee was especially hard hit.  Following the crash of the stock market, […]

Vice President Harry Truman

By Ray Hill Only three men served less time in office as Vice President of the United States than Harry S. Truman. John Tyler succeeded to the presidency after thirty-one days when William Henry Harrison caught cold, which turned into pneumonia. Andrew Johnson had been vice president for forty-two days when Abraham Lincoln was assassinated. […]

Harry Truman Goes To The Senate, Part III

By Ray Hill Harry Truman’s miraculous campaign for president in 1948 has become part of American political lore.  Just about every American who can see has seen the famous picture of a beaming Truman holding up a copy of the Chicago Tribune with the headline blaring “Dewey Defeats Truman.” Yet 1948 was not the most […]

Judy, Prisoner of War and Hero

By Ray Hill I tried hard to think of a special story for readers for Christmas.  For this most special time of the year it finally occurred to me that I would share a very interesting story of Judy, an English Pointer.  For those of you who enjoy history and love dogs, this is a […]

Harry Truman Goes To The Senate, Part II

By Ray Hill When 1934 began, Harry S. Truman had been a deeply disappointed man. He faced political oblivion. By all accounts, Truman had been one of the very few honest public servants in Jackson County, Missouri. On occasion, he had been able to buck Boss Tom Pendergast who ruled Kansas City like a potentate. […]

Harry Truman Goes To The Senate I

By Ray Hill There was a time when members of the United States Senate were not only considered some of the most talented and extraordinary people in their respective states, but the entire country.  Daniel Webster, Henry Clay, and John C. Calhoun all occupied seats in the U. S. Senate at the same time and […]

Claude Pepper of Florida

By Ray Hill There is likely no other career that affords fewer opportunities for revival than politics.  Even more rare in a political career is redemption.  Claude Pepper’s political career spanned a remarkable sixty years, from 1928 until his death in 1989.  By the time he died, Pepper was something of an iconic figure, especially […]

Senator McKellar & the Fracas on the Senate Floor

By Ray Hill There are several stories told about Tennessee’s Senator Kenneth D. McKellar, some of which have become legend.  Perhaps the most frequently told story is that of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt asking McKellar if the Tennessean could hide $2 billion in the budget, which was the origin of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory.  […]

Thetus W. Sims of Tennessee

By Ray Hill For twenty-four years, Thetus W. Sims served West Tennessee as a member of Congress. Now almost entirely forgotten, he is a figure from a distant past. In fact, before his career was over, Sims was already becoming an antiquated figure, which helped to usher him out of office. Sims had been superintendent […]