James B. McCreary

U.S. Congressperson

1838 – 1918

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Who was James B. McCreary?

James Bennett McCreary was a lawyer and politician from the US state of Kentucky. He represented the state in both houses of the U.S. Congress and served as its 27th and 37th governor. Shortly after graduating from law school, he was commissioned as the only major in the 11th Kentucky Cavalry, serving under Confederate Brigadier General John Hunt Morgan during the American Civil War. He returned to his legal practice after the war. In 1869, he was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives where he served until 1875; he was twice chosen Speaker of the House. At their 1875 nominating convention, state Democrats chose McCreary as their nominee for governor, and he won an easy victory over Republican John Marshall Harlan. With the state still feeling the effects of the Panic of 1873, most of McCreary's actions as governor were aimed at easing the plight of the state's poor farmers.

In 1884, McCreary was elected to the first of six consecutive terms in the U.S. House of Representatives. As a legislator, he was an advocate of free silver and a champion of the state's agricultural interests. After two failed bids for election to the Senate, McCreary secured the support of Governor J. C. W. Beckham, and in 1902, the General Assembly elected him to the Senate. He served one largely undistinguished term, and Beckham successfully challenged him for his Senate seat in 1908. The divide between McCreary and Beckham was short-lived, however, and Beckham supported McCreary's election to a second term as governor in 1911.

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Born
Jul 8, 1838
Richmond
Also known as
  • James McCreary
Spouses
Religion
  • Presbyterianism
Nationality
  • United States of America
  • Confederate States of America
Profession
Education
  • Centre College
  • Cumberland University
Died
Oct 8, 1918
Richmond

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

Citation

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"James B. McCreary." Biographies.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2022. Web. 19 Jan. 2022. <https://www.biographies.net/people/en/james_b_mccreary>.

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