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 Sherman Minton

Sherman Minton

Birth
Georgetown, Floyd County, Indiana, USA
Death 9 Apr 1965 (aged 74)
New Albany, Floyd County, Indiana, USA
Burial New Albany, Floyd County, Indiana, USA
Memorial ID 5715 · View Source
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Jurist, US Senator, and US Supreme Court Associate Justice. A member of the Democratic Party, he served one term in the US Senate from January 1935 until January 1941 and on the US Supreme Court from October 1949 until October 1956. The third of five children, his father was a laborer for the New Albany and St. Louis Air Line Railway. At age nine, his mother died and as a young teenager, he relocated to Fort Worth, Texas with this older brother and worked at a meat packing plant in order to help support his family. The following year, he returned to his New Albany, Indiana home and after graduating from New Albany High School in 1910, he enrolled at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, graduating at the top of his class in 1913. He then enrolled in the Indiana University School of Law (now the Indiana University Maurer School of Law) and played on the college football team. In 1915 he graduated at the top of his class and received a scholarship to attend Yale Law School at New Haven, Connecticut, graduating with his law degree in 1916. He returned to his home and opened a law practice and when the US entered World War I in April 1917, he joined the US Army, commissioned a captain, and sent to France in July 1918 with the 84th Division, American Expeditionary Forces. He did not see combat action and remained in Germany for until his discharge in August 1919. While in Europe, he studied law at the University of Paris before returning home in March 1920 to resume his law practice. He then entered politics and lost the Democratic nomination for Indiana's 3rd congressional district. After relocating to Miami, Florida to join a law firm, he returned home in January 1928 and was defeated again for the Democratic congressional nomination. In 1934 he ran for US Senate and won, defeating incumbent Republican Arthur Ray Robinson. It was during his Senate campaign that he delivered his infamous "You Cannot East the Constitution" speech" which nearly cost him the election. As a US Senator, he staunchly championed President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal policies and served on a special Lobby Investigation that looked into the questionable practices of lobby groups. In 1940 he ran for re-election to the US Senate and narrowly lost to the Republican challenger, Raymond E. Willis. In May 1941 President Roosevelt nominated him to serve on the US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, filling the seat vacated by the death of Walter Emanuel Treanor. In September 1949 US President Harry Truman nominated him to the US Supreme Court and he was confirmed by the US Senate the following month. During his tenure on the High Court, he wrote 67 majority opinions, of which his most famous was in Barrows v. Jackson (1953). His health began to slowly decline and he retired from the High Court in October 1956 and returned to his home where he occasionally lectured at Indiana University and gave public speeches. He received honorary doctorate degrees from the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky and Oxford University in England. In late March 1965 he was hospitalized for what turned out to be internal bleeding and he died at the age of 74. The Sherman Minton Bridge that crosses the Ohio River on Interstate 64, between Louisville, Kentucky and New Albany, Indiana, is named in his honor. A bust in his honor resides in the rotunda of the Indiana State Capitol building in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Bio by: William Bjornstad


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Added: 11 Jun 1999
  • Find A Grave Memorial 5715
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Sherman Minton (20 Oct 1890–9 Apr 1965), Find A Grave Memorial no. 5715, citing Holy Trinity Cemetery, New Albany, Floyd County, Indiana, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .