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76th United States Congress

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

76th United States Congress
75th ←
→ 77th

January 3, 1939 – January 3, 1941
Members96 senators
435 representatives
5 non-voting delegates
Senate majorityDemocratic
Senate PresidentJohn N. Garner (D)
House majorityDemocratic
House SpeakerWilliam B. Bankhead (D)
(until September 15, 1940)
Sam Rayburn (D)
(from September 16, 1940)
1st: January 3, 1939 – August 5, 1939
2nd: September 21, 1939 – November 3, 1939
3rd: January 3, 1940 – January 3, 1941

The 76th United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, composed of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives.[1][2] It met in Washington, D.C., from January 3, 1939, to January 3, 1941, during the seventh and eighth years of Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the 1930 United States census.

Both chambers had a Democratic majority - holding a supermajority in the Senate, but a greatly reduced majority in the House, thus losing the supermajority there. With President Roosevelt, the Democrats maintained an overall federal government trifecta.

The 76th is also the most recent Congress to have held a third session.

Chaplain of the United States Senate ZeBarney Thorne Phillips delivering prayer to open the session

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Major events

President Roosevelt signing the Selective Training and Service Act of 1940, September 16, 1940.


Major legislation

Party summary


(shading shows control)
Total Vacant


End of previous congress 74 2 1 18 1 96 0
Begin 69 2 1 23 1 96 0
End 68 1 25
Final voting share 70.8% 1.0% 1.0% 26.0% 1.0%
Beginning of next congress 66 0 1 27 1 95 1

House of Representatives

House seats by party holding plurality in state
  80+% to 100% Democratic
  80+% to 100% Republican
  60+% to 80% Democratic
  60+% to 80% Republican
  Up to 60% Democratic
  Up to 60% Republican
(shading shows control)
Total Vacant



End of previous congress 324 5 0 7 89 1[a] 426 9
Begin 260 1 1 2 169 1 434 1
End 256 167 4287
Final voting share 59.8% 0.2% 0.2% 0.5% 39.0% 0.2%
Beginning of next congress 268 1 1 3 162 0 435 0



Majority (Democratic) leadership

Minority (Republican) leadership

House of Representatives

Majority (Democratic) leadership

Minority (Republican) leadership



Senators were popularly elected statewide every two years, with one-third beginning new six-year terms with each Congress. Preceding the names in the list below are Senate class numbers, which indicate the cycle of their election, In this Congress, Class 1 meant their term ended with this Congress, requiring reelection in 1940; Class 2 meant their term began in the last Congress, requiring reelection in 1942; and Class 3 meant their term began in this Congress, requiring reelection in 1944.

House of Representatives

The names of members are preceded by their district numbers.

Changes in membership

The count below reflects changes from the beginning of this Congress.


Senate changes
Vacated by Reason for change Successor Date of successor's
formal installation[b]
J. Hamilton Lewis (D) Died April 9, 1939.
Successor appointed April 14, 1939, to continue the term.
James M. Slattery (D) April 14, 1939
M. M. Logan (D) Died October 3, 1939.
Successor appointed October 10, 1939, to continue the term.
Successor elected November 5, 1940, to finish the term.
Happy Chandler (D) October 10, 1939
William E. Borah (R) Died January 19, 1940.
Successor appointed January 27, 1940, to continue the term.
Successor elected November 5, 1940, to finish the term.
John Thomas (R) January 27, 1940
Ernest W. Gibson (R) Died June 20, 1940.
Successor appointed June 24, 1940, to continue the term.
Ernest W. Gibson Jr. (R) June 24, 1940
Ernest Lundeen (FL) Died August 31, 1940.
Successor appointed October 14, 1940, to continue the term.
Successor lost election to finish the term.
Joseph H. Ball (R) October 14, 1940
Key Pittman (D) Died November 10, 1940.
Successor appointed November 27, 1940, to continue finish the term, also appointed to serve in the next term.
Berkeley L. Bunker (D) November 27, 1940
James M. Slattery (D) Interim appointee lost election November 21, 1940, to finish the term. Charles W. Brooks (R) November 22, 1940
Lewis B. Schwellenbach (D) Resigned December 16, 1940, to become judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Washington.
Successor appointed December 19, 1940, to finish the term.
Monrad Wallgren (D) December 19, 1940

House of Representatives

House changes
District Vacated by Reason for change Successor Date of successor's
formal installation[b]
Maryland 5th Vacant Rep. Stephen W. Gambrill died in previous Congress Lansdale Sasscer (D) February 3, 1939
Arkansas 4th William B. Cravens (D) Died January 13, 1939 William F. Cravens (D) September 12, 1939
Pennsylvania 4th J. Burrwood Daly (D) Died March 12, 1939 John E. Sheridan (D) November 7, 1939
Tennessee 6th Clarence W. Turner (D) Died March 23, 1939 W. Wirt Courtney (D) May 11, 1939
Maryland 1st Thomas A. Goldsborough (D) Resigned April 5, 1939, after being appointed associate justice of the District Court of the United States for the District of Columbia David J. Ward (D) June 8, 1939
New York 34th Bert Lord (R) Died May 24, 1939 Edwin A. Hall (R) November 7, 1939
Georgia 4th Emmett M. Owen (D) Died June 21, 1939 A. Sidney Camp (D) August 1, 1939
Wisconsin 3rd Harry W. Griswold (R) Died July 4, 1939 Vacant until the next Congress
Tennessee 3rd Sam D. McReynolds (D) Died July 11, 1939 Estes Kefauver (D) September 13, 1939
California 18th Thomas M. Eaton (R) Died September 16, 1939 Vacant until the next Congress
South Carolina 1st Thomas S. McMillan (D) Died September 29, 1939 Clara G. McMillan (D) November 7, 1939
Ohio 22nd Chester C. Bolton (R) Died October 29, 1939 Frances P. Bolton (R) February 27, 1940
Tennessee 2nd J. Will Taylor (R) Died November 14, 1939 John Jennings Jr. (R) December 30, 1939
Puerto Rico at-large Santiago Iglesias (Coalitionist) Died December 5, 1939 Bolívar Pagán (Socialist) December 26, 1939
Colorado 3rd John A. Martin (D) Died December 23, 1939 William E. Burney (D) November 5, 1940
Michigan 5th Carl E. Mapes (R) Died December 12, 1939 Bartel J. Jonkman (R) February 19, 1940
New York 14th William I. Sirovich (D) Died December 17, 1939 Morris M. Edelstein (D) February 6, 1940
Ohio 17th William A. Ashbrook (D) Died January 1, 1940 J. Harry McGregor (R) February 27, 1940
Nebraska 1st George H. Heinke (R) Died January 2, 1940 John H. Sweet (R) April 19, 1940
Tennessee 9th Clift Chandler (D) Resigned January 2, 1940, after being elected Mayor of Memphis Clifford Davis (D) February 15, 1940
New York 31st Wallace E. Pierce (R) Died January 3, 1940 Clarence E. Kilburn (R) February 13, 1940
New York 22nd Edward W. Curley (D) Died January 6, 1940 Walter A. Lynch (D) February 20, 1940
Iowa 6th Cassius C. Dowell (R) Died February 4, 1940 Robert K. Goodwin (R) March 5, 1940
Maine 2nd Clyde Smith (R) Died April 8, 1940 Margaret Chase Smith (R) June 3, 1940
Georgia 8th W. Benjamin Gibbs (D) Died August 7, 1940 Florence Reville Gibbs (D) October 1, 1940
New Jersey 8th George N. Seger (R) Died August 26, 1940 Vacant until the next Congress
Alabama 7th William B. Bankhead (D) Died September 15, 1940 Zadoc L. Weatherford (D) November 5, 1940
North Carolina 1st Lindsay C. Warren (D) Resigned October 31, 1940, after being appointed Comptroller General of the United States Herbert C. Bonner (D) November 5, 1940
Texas 18th John Marvin Jones (D) Resigned November 20, 1940, to become judge of the United States Court of Claims Vacant until the next Congress
Louisiana 2nd Paul H. Maloney (D) Resigned December 15, 1940, to become Collector of Internal Revenue for New Orleans District Vacant until the next Congress
Washington 2nd Monrad Wallgren (D) Resigned December 19, 1940, after being appointed to the US Senate having already been elected. Vacant until the next Congress
Missouri 11th Thomas C. Hennings Jr. (D) Resigned December 31, 1940, to become candidate for Circuit attorney of St. Louis Vacant until the next Congress


Lists of committees and their party leaders for members of the House and Senate committees can be found through the Official Congressional Directory at the bottom of this article. The directory after the pages of terms of service lists committees of the Senate, House (Standing with Subcommittees, Select and Special) and Joint and, after that, House/Senate committee assignments. On the committees section of the House and Senate in the Official Congressional Directory, the committee's members on the first row on the left side shows the chairman of the committee and on the right side shows the ranking member of the committee.

This page was last edited on 1 September 2023, at 03:37
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