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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Hazel Abel
Hazel Abel.jpg
United States Senator
from Nebraska
In office
November 8, 1954 – December 31, 1954
Preceded byEva Bowring
Succeeded byCarl Curtis
Personal details
Born(1888-07-10)July 10, 1888
Plattsmouth, Nebraska, U.S.
DiedJuly 30, 1966(1966-07-30) (aged 78)
Lincoln, Nebraska, U.S.
Resting placeWyuka Cemetery
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)George Abel
Children5
EducationUniversity of Nebraska, Lincoln (BA)

Hazel Hempel Abel (July 10, 1888 – July 30, 1966) was an American educator and politician in the U.S. state of Nebraska, who served as a member of the United States Senate for fifty-four days in 1954. She was the first woman elected to the Senate from Nebraska, and she remains the shortest-serving senator from Nebraska.

Early life

Abel was born in Plattsmouth, Nebraska, the daughter of Charles Hempel and Ella Hempel. She attended the public schools of Omaha, Nebraska and graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 1908.[1] She worked as a high school mathematics teacher and principal in Papillion, Nebraska, Ashland, Nebraska, and Crete, Nebraska before working as secretary, treasurer, and eventually president of her husband's construction company.[2]

Political career

Abel was a delegate to the Nebraska State Republican Conventions from 1939 to 1948 and from 1952 to 1956.[3] In 1954 Abel was elected to be the vice chairman of the State Republican Central Committee. That same year she was elected to complete the unexpired term of Sen. Dwight Griswold, who had died in office.[4] She became the first woman elected from Nebraska to serve in the Senate, as well as the first woman to follow another woman in a Senate seat,[5] as Eva Bowring had previously been appointed to the seat to serve until an election was held. She served in the Senate from November 8, 1954 until her resignation on December 31, 1954. She resigned three days before the expiration of her term, to give fellow Republican Carl Curtis of Nebraska, elected to the six–year term in November, a seniority advantage. She later observed that she campaigned for the two–month term to raise the visibility of women in political office. “To me it was more than just a short term in the Senate,” Abel recalled for Newsweek. “I wanted Nebraska voters to express their approval of a woman in government. I was sort of a guinea pig.”[6] While in the Senate, she voted to censure Sen. Joseph McCarthy from Wisconsin, in the Army–McCarthy hearings.[7] Abel was the fifth of six Senators to serve during the fifteenth Senate term for Nebraska's Class 2 seat (January 3, 1949 to January 3, 1955).

She was a delegate to the White House Conference on Education in 1955, and chairwoman of the Nebraska delegation to the 1956 Republican National Convention.[8] From 1955 to 1959 she was a member of the Theodore Roosevelt Centennial Commission,[9] and in 1957 she was named "American Mother of the Year".[10] She also served as the president and founder of the Nebraska Federation of Republican Women,[11] and was on the board of trustees at Doane College and Nebraska Wesleyan College.[12] She tried unsuccessfully to win the Republican nomination for Governor of Nebraska in 1960.[13]

Death and legacy

She died in Lincoln, Nebraska on July 30, 1966 and is interred in Wyuka Cemetery in Lincoln.[14] Hazel Abel Park in Lincoln is named in her honor.[15]

Family life

Abel married George Abel in 1916,[16] and they had five children, Helen, George, Hazel, Alice, and Annette.[17]

See also

References

  1. ^ "Donors Honored at Rededication of Hazel Abel Park". City of Lincoln Nebraska. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ Wasniewski, Matthew Andrew (2006). Women in Congress, 1917-2006. Government Printing Office. p. 321. Retrieved 2 June 2014. Hazel Hempel Abel University of Nebraska in 1908. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ Schultz, Jeffrey D. (1999). Encyclopedia of Women in American Politics. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 3. ISBN 9781573561310.
  4. ^ "Hazel ABEL". NebraskaGravestones.org. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ Membership Changes of the 83rd Congress
  6. ^ "ABEL, Hazel Hempel | US House of Representatives: History, Art & Archives". history.house.gov. Retrieved 2019-11-20.
  7. ^ "ABEL, Hazel Hempel". History, Art & Archivesnited States House of Representatives. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  8. ^ Schultz, Jeffrey D. (1999). Encyclopedia of Women in American Politics. Greenwood Publishing Group. p. 3. ISBN 9781573561310. Retrieved 2 June 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ "Biographies" (PDF). United States Government Printing Office. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  10. ^ "Mother's Day at 100: Exploring changing views of motherhood". Twin Citites.com. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ Nebraska Federation of Republican Women
  12. ^ "Biographies" (PDF). United States Government Printing Office. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ "ABEL, Hazel Hempel". History, Art & Archivesnited States House of Representatives. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "Hazel ABEL". NebraskaGravestones.org. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ "Donors Honored at Rededication of Hazel Abel Park". City of Lincoln Nebraska. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  16. ^ Wasniewski, Matthew Andrew (2006). Women in Congress, 1917-2006. Government Printing Office. p. 321. Retrieved 2 June 2014. Hazel Hempel Abel University of Nebraska in 1908. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  17. ^ "George P. Abel". Lincoln Community Foundation. Retrieved June 2, 2014. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

Further reading

  • Biographical Director of the United States Congress, 1774-1989: Bicentennial Edition. United States: Government Printing Office, 1989. ISBN 0-16-006384-1

External links

Party political offices
Preceded by
Dwight Griswold
Republican nominee for
U.S. Senator from Nebraska (Class 2)

1954
Succeeded by
Carl Curtis
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Eva Bowring
 U.S. senator (Class 2) from Nebraska
November 8, 1954 – December 31, 1954
Served alongside: Roman Hruska
Succeeded by
Carl Curtis
This page was last edited on 11 January 2021, at 16:49
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