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James H. Hughes

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

James H. Hughes
United States Senator
from Delaware
In office
January 3, 1937 – January 3, 1943
Preceded byDaniel O. Hastings
Succeeded byC. Douglass Buck
Delaware Secretary of State
In office
GovernorEbe W. Tunnell
Preceded byWilliam H. Boyce
Succeeded byCaleb R. Layton
Personal details
James Hurd Hughes

(1867-01-14)January 14, 1867
Felton, Delaware, U.S.
DiedAugust 29, 1953(1953-08-29) (aged 86)
Lewes, Delaware, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Caroline Taylor
ResidenceDover, Delaware, U.S.

James Hurd Hughes (January 14, 1867 – August 29, 1953) was an American lawyer and politician from Dover, in Kent County, Delaware. He was a member of the Democratic Party who served as U.S. Senator from Delaware.

Early life and family

Hughes was born in Kent County, Delaware, near Felton, the son of Rebecca (Hurd) and Ebenezer Hughes. He attended the Collegiate Institute in Dover, taught school for a few years, studied law, and was admitted to the Delaware Bar in 1890. Along with his law practice, he was engaged in agricultural pursuits and banking.

Political career

Senator James H. Hughes (D-Del.), Mrs. Hughes, Mrs. George Schwartz, mother of Welch, George Schwartz, his stepfather, and Lieutenant George S. Welch with F. D. R. at the White House, May 25, 1942
Senator James H. Hughes (D-Del.), Mrs. Hughes, Mrs. George Schwartz, mother of Welch, George Schwartz, his stepfather, and Lieutenant George S. Welch with F. D. R. at the White House, May 25, 1942

Hughes served as the Delaware Secretary of State from 1897 until 1901. He ran for governor of Delaware in 1916 but was defeated by Republican John G. Townsend, Jr., a businessman from Selbyville, Delaware. Twenty years later, in 1936 he was elected to the U. S. Senate, defeating incumbent Republican U. S. Senator Daniel O. Hastings. During this term, he served with the Democratic majority in the 75th, 76th, and 77th Congress.

Hughes lost his bid for a second term in 1942, losing the Democratic Party nomination to E. Ennalls Berl. In all, he served from January 3, 1937, until January 2, 1943, during the administration of U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt. After completing his term in the Senate, he returned to the practice of law. All the while, from 1905 until his death, he was a director of the Farmers' Bank of Delaware.

Death and legacy

Hughes was married to Caroline Taylor.[1] Their great-granddaughter is actress Perrey Reeves.

Hughes died at Lewes and is buried in the Lakeside Methodist Episcopal Cemetery at Dover.

His home, Wheel of Fortune, was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1973.[2]


Elections are held the first Tuesday after November 1. U.S. Senators are popularly elected and take office January 3 for a six-year term.

Public Offices
Office Type Location Began office Ended office notes
Secretary of State Executive Dover 1897 1901 Delaware
U.S. Senator Legislature Washington January 3, 1937 January 3, 1943 class 2
United States Congressional service
Dates Congress Chamber Majority President Committees Class/District
1937–1939 75th U.S. Senate Democratic Franklin D. Roosevelt class 2
1939–1941 76th U.S. Senate Democratic Franklin D. Roosevelt class 2
1941–1943 77th U.S. Senate Democratic Franklin D. Roosevelt class 2
Election results
Year Office Subject Party Votes % Opponent Party Votes %
1916 Governor James H. Hughes Democratic 24,053 47% John G. Townsend, Jr. Republican 26,664 52%
1936 U.S. Senate James H. Hughes Democratic 67,136 53% Daniel O. Hastings Republican 52,469 41%


  1. ^ "Princeton Alumni Weekly". 1983.
  2. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  • Carter, Richard B. (2001). Clearing New Ground, The Life of John G. Townsend, Jr. Wilmington, Delaware: The Delaware Heritage Press. ISBN 0-924117-20-6.


External links

Party political offices
Preceded by
Thomas M. Monaghan
Democratic nominee for Governor of Delaware
Succeeded by
Andrew J. Lynch
Preceded by
Thomas F. Bayard Jr.
Democratic Party nominee for United States Senator (class 2) from Delaware
Succeeded by
E. Ennalls Berl
Political offices
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Daniel O. Hastings
U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Delaware
Served alongside: John G. Townsend Jr., James M. Tunnell
Succeeded by
C. Douglass Buck
This page was last edited on 11 January 2021, at 20:38
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