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History and GovernmentCongressional BiographiesSouth Carolina

Ellison DuRant SMITH

(1864-1944)
Senate Years of Service:
1909-1944
Party:
Democrat

SMITH, Ellison DuRant, a Senator from South Carolina; born in Lynchburg, Sumter (now Lee) County, S.C., August 1, 1864; attended the private and public schools of Lynchburg, Stewart’s School at Charleston, S.C., and the University of South Carolina at Columbia; graduated from Wofford College at Spartanburg, S.C., in 1889; member, State house of representatives 1896-1900; unsuccessful candidate for the United States Congress 1901; engaged in mercantile and agricultural pursuits; one of the principal figures in the organization of the Southern Cotton Association in 1905; field agent and general organizer in the cotton protective movement 1905-1908 and became known as “Cotton Ed”; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate in 1908; reelected in 1914, 1920, 1926, 1932 and 1938 and served from March 4, 1909, until his death; unsuccessful candidate for renomination in 1944; chairman, Committee on Transportation Routes to the Seaboard (Sixty-second Congress), Committee on Immigration (Sixty-third through Sixty-fifth Congresses), Committee on Interstate Commerce (Sixty-fifth and Sixty-eighth Congresses), Committee on Conservation of Natural Resources (Sixty-sixth Congress), Committee on Agriculture and Forestry (Seventy-third through Seventy-eighth Congresses); died in Lynchburg, S.C., on November 17, 1944; interment in St. Lukes Cemetery.

Bibliography

American National Biography; Dictionary of American Biography; Smith, Seldon. “Ellison DuRant Smith: A Southern Progressive 1909-1929.” Ph.D. dissertation, University of South Carolina, 1970; U.S. Congress. Memorial Services. 79th Cong., 1st sess., 1945. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1947.

Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1771-Present

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