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James Hay (politician)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

James Hay
James Hay.jpg
James Hay in 1910
Senior Judge of the Court of Claims
In office
November 30, 1927 – June 12, 1931
Judge of the Court of Claims
In office
July 17, 1916 – November 30, 1927
Appointed byWoodrow Wilson
Preceded byGeorge W. Atkinson
Succeeded byWilliam R. Green
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 7th district
In office
March 4, 1897 – October 1, 1916
Preceded bySmith S. Turner
Succeeded byThomas W. Harrison
Chairman of the United States House Committee on Military Affairs
In office
March 4, 1911 – October 1, 1916
Preceded byJohn A. T. Hull
Succeeded byS. Hubert Dent Jr.
Member of the Virginia Senate
from the 15th district
In office
December 6, 1893 – March 4, 1897
Preceded byBasil B. Gordon
Succeeded byJ. L. Jeffries
Member of the Virginia House of Delegates for Greene and Madison
In office
December 2, 1885 – December 1, 1891
Preceded byThomas A. Chapman
Succeeded byJohn C. Utz
Personal details
James Hay

(1856-01-09)January 9, 1856
Millwood, Virginia
DiedJune 12, 1931(1931-06-12) (aged 75)
Madison, Virginia
Resting placeCedar Hill Cemetery
Madison, Virginia
Political partyDemocratic
EducationUniversity of Pennsylvania
Washington and Lee University (LL.B.)

James Hay (January 9, 1856 – June 12, 1931) served in both houses of the Virginia General Assembly, was a United States Representative from Virginia and a Judge of the Court of Claims.

Education and career

Born on January 9, 1856, in Millwood, Clarke County, Virginia,[1] Hay attended private schools, then the University of Pennsylvania and received a Bachelor of Laws in 1877 from the Washington and Lee University School of Law.[1] He was a teacher in Harrisonburg, Virginia from 1877 to 1879.[1] He was admitted to the bar and entered private practice in Harrisonburg from 1877 to 1879.[1] He continued private practice in Madison, Virginia from 1879 to 1897.[1] He was a commonwealth attorney for Madison County, Virginia from 1883 to 1896.[1] He was a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from 1885 to 1891, representing Greene County and Madison County.[2] He was a member of the Senate of Virginia from 1893 to 1897, representing Culpeper County, Rappahannock County, Madison County and Orange County.[3] He was a member of the Democratic State committee in 1888.[4] He was delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1888.[4]

Congressional service

Hay was elected as a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives of the 55th United States Congress and to the nine succeeding Congresses and served from March 4, 1897, until his resignation on October 1, 1916.[4] He was Chairman of the United States House Committee on Military Affairs for the 62nd through 64th United States Congresses.[4]

Military preparedness

Hay was involved in the "Preparedness Movement" of 1915 to 1916, and in response to which he drafted and pushed through the National Defense Act of 1916.[5]

Federal judicial service

Hay was nominated by President Woodrow Wilson on July 15, 1916, to a seat on the Court of Claims (later the United States Court of Claims) vacated by Judge George W. Atkinson.[6][1] He was confirmed by the United States Senate on July 17, 1916, and received his commission the same day.[1] He assumed senior status on November 30, 1927.[1] His service terminated on June 12, 1931, due to his death in Madison.[1] He was interred in Cedar Hill Cemetery in Madison.[4]

Electoral history

  • 1896; Hay was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives with 55.81% of the vote, defeating Republican Robert J. Walker, NtD (?) J. Samuel Harrisberger, and Independent John F. Forsyth.[citation needed]
  • 1898; Hay was re-elected with 77.05% of the vote, defeating SilD (?) D.C. O'Flaherty.[citation needed]
  • 1900; Hay was re-elected with 63.35% of the vote, defeating Republican C.M. Gibbens.[citation needed]
  • 1902; Hay was re-elected with 64.68% of the vote, defeating Republican Samuel J. Hoffman.[citation needed]
  • 1904; Hay was re-elected with 64.65% of the vote, defeating Republican Charles M. Kelzel.[citation needed]
  • 1906; Hay was re-elected unopposed.[citation needed]
  • 1908; Hay was re-elected with 62.85% of the vote, defeating Republican L. Pritchard.[citation needed]
  • 1910; Hay was re-elected with 57.96% of the vote, defeating Republican John Paul and Independent Hugh S. Lupton.[citation needed]
  • 1912; Hay was re-elected with 71.54% of the vote, defeating Republican George N. Earman and Independent E.C. Garrison.[citation needed]
  • 1914; Hay was re-elected with 86.96% of the vote, defeating Republican E.C. Garrison.[citation needed]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Hay, James - Federal Judicial Center".
  2. ^ Cynthia Miller Leonard (ed), The General Assembly of Virginia 1619-1978: A Bicentennial Register of Members (Richmond, 1978) pp 542, 546, 550
  3. ^ Leonard pp. 560, 564
  4. ^ a b c d e United States Congress. "James Hay (id: H000382)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  5. ^ Herring, George C., Jr. "James Hay and the Preparedness Controversy, 1915-1916." Journal of Southern History 30 (November 1964): 383-404.
  6. ^ The United States Court of Claims : a history / pt. 1. The judges, 1855-1976 / by Marion T. Bennett / pt. 2. Origin, development, jurisdiction, 1855-1978 / W. Cowen, P. Nichols, M. T. Bennett. Washington, D.C.: Committee on the Bicentennial of Independence and the Constitution of the Judicial Conference of the United States. 1976.


U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Smith S. Turner
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 7th congressional district

Succeeded by
Thomas W. Harrison
Legal offices
Preceded by
George W. Atkinson
Judge of the Court of Claims
Succeeded by
William R. Green
This page was last edited on 17 July 2020, at 02:42
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