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William H. King

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

William King
Sen. Wm. H. King, Utah LCCN2016845501 (cropped).jpg
President pro tempore of the United States Senate
In office
November 19, 1940 – January 3, 1941
Preceded byKey Pittman
Succeeded byPat Harrison
Secretary of the Senate Democratic Caucus
In office
March 4, 1917 – March 3, 1927
LeaderThomas S. Martin
Gilbert Hitchcock (Acting)
Oscar Underwood
Joseph Taylor Robinson
Preceded byKey Pittman (Acting)
Succeeded byHugo Black
United States Senator
from Utah
In office
March 4, 1917 – January 3, 1941
Preceded byGeorge Sutherland
Succeeded byAbe Murdock
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Utah's at-large district
In office
April 2, 1900 – March 3, 1901
Preceded byB. H. Roberts (Elect)*
Succeeded byGeorge Sutherland
In office
March 4, 1897 – March 3, 1899
Preceded byClarence Emir Allen
Succeeded byB. H. Roberts (Elect)*
Personal details
William Henry King

(1863-06-03)June 3, 1863
Fillmore, Utah, U.S.
DiedNovember 27, 1949(1949-11-27) (aged 86)
Salt Lake City, Utah, U.S.
Resting placeSalt Lake City Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic
Annie Lyman
(m. 1889; died 1906)

Vera Sjodahl
(m. 1912; his death 1949)
Children7, including David
EducationUniversity of Utah
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor (LLB)
*Roberts was denied from being seated.

William Henry King (June 3, 1863 – November 27, 1949) was an American lawyer, politician, and jurist from Salt Lake City, Utah. As a Democrat, King represented Utah in the United States Senate from 1917 until 1941.


King was born in Fillmore, Utah Territory to Josephine (née Henry) and William King.[1] He graduated from Brigham Young Academy in Provo, Utah and attended the University of Deseret (now University of Utah) in Salt Lake City. He served as a missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Great Britain from 1880 to 1883.

After holding local offices and serving two terms in the territorial legislature, he graduated from the law department of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor. He later joined the Utah bar and practiced law. He held other territorial offices and was appointed as an associate justice of the Utah Supreme Court, serving between 1894 and 1896.

After Utah became a state in 1896, King was elected to the United States House of Representatives and served in the 55th Congress from March 4, 1897 to March 3, 1899. He was not nominated for a second term, but when his replacement, B. H. Roberts, was denied his seat because he was a polygamist, King was elected to complete Roberts's term. He served from April 2, 1900 to March 3, 1901. He ran for the same position in 1900 and again in 1902, but lost both times.

King was elected to the United States Senate four times, serving between March 4, 1917 and January 3, 1941. He was defeated for renomination in 1940. In 1918 and 1919, he served on the Overman Committee, which investigated seditious pro-German activity during World War I and Bolshevik-inspired anti-Americanism in the months following the war's end. He served as the President pro tempore of the Senate from 1940-41 during the 76th Congress.

King remained in Washington, D.C., where he practiced law until April 1947. He returned to Utah and died there in 1949. He was buried at Salt Lake City Cemetery.

King was married twice, first to Louisa Ann "Annie" Lyman, to whom he wed in 1889, and remained with her to her death on April 16, 1906.[2][3] He was then married to Vera B. Sjodahl, a daughter of Janne M. Sjödahl, from 1912 to his own death in 1949.[4] One of his sons by Vera, David S. King, served three terms in the U.S. House of Representatives and was a United States Ambassador to both the Malagasy Republic and Mauritius. One of his granddaughters, Jody Olsen, has served as Director of the Peace Corps since 2018. His paternal first cousin, Culbert Olson, was a Governor of California.

King was a direct descendant of Edmund Rice, his family's English immigrant ancestor to Massachusetts Bay Colony, as follows:[5]

  • William H. King, son of
  • William King (1834–1892), son of
  • Thomas Rice King (1813–1879),[6] son of
  • Thomas King (1770–1845), son of
  • William King (1724–1793), son of
  • Ezra Rice King (1697–1746), son of
  • Samuel Rice King (1667–1713), son of
  • Samuel Rice (1634–1684), son of

See also


  1. ^ "Pioneers and Prominent Men of Utah", FamilySearch, retrieved April 27, 2018
  2. ^ "Utah, County Marriages, 1887-1940", FamilySearch, retrieved April 27, 2018
  3. ^ "Utah Deaths and Burials", FamilySearch, retrieved April 27, 2018
  4. ^ "Utah Marriages, 1887-1935", FamilySearch, retrieved April 27, 2018
  5. ^ Edmund Rice (1638) Association, 2007. Descendants of Edmund Rice: The First Nine Generations.
  6. ^ "Thomas Rice King". Early Latter Day Saints; Mormon Trail Database. Retrieved 21 Sep 2010.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Clarence Emir Allen
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Utah's at-large congressional district

Succeeded by
B. H. Roberts
Preceded by
B. H. Roberts
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Utah's at-large congressional district

Succeeded by
George Sutherland
Party political offices
First Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Utah
(Class 1)

1916, 1922, 1928, 1934
Succeeded by
Abe Murdock
Preceded by
Key Pittman
Secretary of the Senate Democratic Caucus
Succeeded by
Hugo Black
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
George Sutherland
U.S. Senator (Class 1) from Utah
Served alongside: Reed Smoot, Elbert D. Thomas
Succeeded by
Abe Murdock
Preceded by
Blair Lee
Chair of the Senate Post Office Expenditures Committee
Succeeded by
Henry W. Keyes
Preceded by
Arthur Capper
Chair of the Senate District of Columbia Committee
Succeeded by
Pat McCarran
Political offices
Preceded by
Key Pittman
President pro tempore of the U.S. Senate
Succeeded by
Pat Harrison
This page was last edited on 4 October 2020, at 12:21
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