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Robert Lee Williams
Birth: Dec. 20, 1868
Brundidge
Pike County
Alabama, USA
Death: Apr. 10, 1948
Durant
Bryan County
Oklahoma, USA

Oklahoma Governor. Growing up in Alabama, Williams became an attorney and Methodist minister before moving to Indian Territory where he increasingly became involved in local politics. He became a leading organizer of the Democratic party in Oklahoma. When Oklahoma became a state in 1907, its first Governor, Charles Haskell, appointed Williams to the Supreme Court. From 1907 until 1914, Williams served as Chief Justice of the Oklahoma Supreme Court. In 1914, he resigned the position of Chief Justice to run for Governor. He won a narrow victory over John Fields, and was inaugurated Governor on January 11, 1915. The state was facing economic problems. which Williams addressed by consolidating state agencies, reducing appropriations, and increasing state revenues. He also pushed for a highway construction bill, a state insurance bond, and an office of pardons and paroles. In 1915, the U. S. Supreme Court in the case of Guinn vs. United States declared the state's "grandfather clause" unconstitutional because its purpose was to deny African-Americans the right to vote. Williams called for a special legislative session to devise a method to continue the discrimination against African-American voters. The legislature proposed a literacy test, but it was rejected by the voters. At the beginning of World War I, some Oklahomans opposed the draft in what was known as the "Green Corn Rebellion." The uprising was crushed under Williams' direction. At the conclusion of his administration in 1919, Williams was appointed by President Wilson to be a United States Judge for the Eastern District of Oklahoma. He held the position from 1919 to 1937, when President Roosevelt elevated him to the Tenth Circuit Court. He retired from that court in 1939, but continued to provide judical advice and services until his death in 1948. (bio by: Thomas Fisher) 
 
Burial:
Highland Cemetery
Durant
Bryan County
Oklahoma, USA
 
Maintained by: Find A Grave
Originally Created by: Thomas Fisher
Record added: May 14, 2008
Find A Grave Memorial# 26819661
Robert Lee Williams
Added by: Thomas Fisher
 
Robert Lee Williams
Added by: Michelle 💕ღ
 
Robert Lee Williams
Added by: Michelle 💕ღ
 
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- Michelle 💕ღ
 Added: Feb. 20, 2014

- Tom A. Hawk
 Added: Dec. 20, 2013
For my greatuncle; brother of my grandfather Simeon W. Williams.
- MaryAnn
 Added: Sep. 8, 2010
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