Robert W. Hemphill

U.S. Congressperson

1915 – 1983

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Who was Robert W. Hemphill?

Robert Witherspoon Hemphill was a U.S. Representative from South Carolina, and later a long-serving United States federal judge. He was the great-great-nephew of Senator John Hemphill, great-nephew of John J. Hemphill, great-nephew of William Huggins Brawley, and great-great-grandson of Robert Witherspoon.

Born in Chester, South Carolina, Hemphill attended the public schools. He graduated from the University of South Carolina in 1936 and from the law school of the same university in 1938. At university, Hemphill was a member of the Euphradian Society. He was admitted to the bar in 1938 and commenced the practice of law in Chester.

He volunteered in 1941 as a flying cadet in the United States Army Air Corps and served as a bomber pilot until December 1945. After returning from the war, he served as chairman of Chester County Democratic conventions in 1946 and 1947. He was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives in 1946, serving from 1947 to 1948. He served as solicitor of the Sixth South Carolina Judicial Circuit from 1951 to 1956.

Hemphill was elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-fifth and to the three succeeding Congresses, serving from January 3, 1957, until his resignation May 1, 1964, to take a federal judicial post. During his Congressional service, he was a delegate to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Congress in London in 1959.

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May 10, 1915
Also known as
  • Robert Hemphill
Dec 25, 1983

on July 23, 2013


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