Vice-President Charles Curtis (1860-1936)

Figure 1.--Until the Kennedy Administration, American vice-presidents primarily played ceremonial roles. Here Vice-President Curtis helps pubicise the Boy Scout nut drive. They are collecting nuts on George washington's Mount Verson estate (1931). The nuts are then distrubuted around the country where gthey are planted to help expand the number nut trees, a project George Washington himself promoted.

Charles Curtis was the 31st vice-president of the United States. He was born in North Topeka, Kansas (1860). At the time Kansas was aerritory and fighting there was at of the developments leading to the Civil War. He had aocky childhood. His mother died (1865) and his father deserted him. As aesult he went to live with his mother's Indian relatives on the Kaw Reservation in Morris county (Council Grove, Kansas). When he was a little older he was taken in by his father's parents (1868). There he attended school and worked in a livery stable to earn some spare change and because he liked horses. He started racing as jockey on Kansas racetracks (1876). Some consider him to be the greatest jockey of his time. He also began working as a reporter for the North Topeka Times. He becme interested in the law. He begn studying law on his own while working as a hack (horse carriage) driver. As his studies advance he got a job in an attorney's office and studdied there as well. He worked for a time as a Notary Public. He was admitted to the Kansas Bar (1881). He developed more of an interest in politics than practicing law. He was elected Prosecuting Attorney of Shawnee County (1884). He married Annie Elizabeth Baird (1884). They had three children: Permelia, Harry, and Leona. He was re-elected to Office of Prosecuting Attorney (1886). He was elected to House of Representatives as aepublican (1992). He failed in his first Senate race (1904). He won his next Senate race (1906), but was defeated in hiosx re-election effort (1912), but won reelection (1914). He became the Republican Floor Leader (now called the majority leader) of the United States Senate (1924). This made him a national figure and was won the Republican nomination for vice-president on the ticket with Hrbert Hoover (1928). Herbert Hoover and Curtis won in a landslide. Curtis is noticeable as the first Native American of proven ancestry to serve as both senator and vice-president. Both Hoover and Curtlis were renominated by the Republicans, but as aesult of the Depression, were defeated by Govenor Franklin Roosevelt (1932). Curtis retired from politics. He died in Washington D.C. (1936).



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Created: 10:13 PM 7/10/2011
Last changed: 10:13 PM 7/10/2011