United States Senator. He served as the United States Senator from Kansas from 1913 to 1919. Born in 1871 in Crawfordsville, Indiana, he moved to Kansas with his family in 1880. After graduating from Seneca High School, he studied law under the direction of his father, who was both a farmer and lawyer. Thompson first practiced law in Seneca, Topeka and Iola. In 1894 he married Bertha Felt with whom he would have three children: Thelma Bertha, Wilbert Felt and William Howard, Jr. In 1905 the family moved to Garden City where he was elected judge of the 32nd Judicial District. In 1912 Thompson ran as Democratic candidate for US Senate and won by a majority of 21,000 votes over his Republican opponent, Governor W. R. Stubbs. While serving as senator, Thompson became a leader in the prohibition movement and championed women's suffrage. He had also been a strong supporter of the direct election of Senators, a proposal that became law with the adoption of the 17th Amendment to the Constitution in 1913. Thompson was defeated in his bid for re-election 1918. He then resumed his law practice in Kansas City and Tulsa. In 1927 he moved back to Washington, DC, where he practiced law until his death of heart disease. He was temporarily interred in Glenwood Cemetery in Washington, DC, until his remains were transferred to Mount Hope Cemetery in Topeka, Kansas, in May of the same year.
Bio by: Ron Roberson