Governor of Tennessee, 1923 to 1927. Governor Peay streamlined state government agencies, instituted a substantial road building program and overhauled public education. He also strongly supported the establishment of the Smoky Mountains National Park. In 1925 he signed into law House Bill No. 185 outlawing the "teaching of the Evolution Theory in all the Universities, Normals and all other public schools of Tennessee, which are supported in whole or in part by the public school funds of the State, and to provide penalties for the violations thereof." This law was put to the test in the celebrated "monkey" trial of high school biology teacher John T. Scopes in July, 1925. Peay became the first governor of the state to die in office when he succumbed to a brain hemorrhage at the Governor's Residence on October 2, 1927.
Bio by: Don Connelly
Sallie Hurst Peay