Gilbert Hitchcock
Acting Chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus
In office
November 12, 1919 – April 27, 1920
DeputyPeter G. Gerry
Preceded byThomas S. Martin
Succeeded byOscar Underwood (Senate Democratic Leader)
United States Senator
from Nebraska
In office
March 4, 1911 – March 3, 1923
Preceded byElmer Burkett
Succeeded byRobert B. Howell
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Nebraska's 2nd district
In office
March 4, 1907 – March 3, 1911
Preceded byJohn L. Kennedy
Succeeded byCharles O. Lobeck
In office
March 4, 1903 – March 3, 1905
Preceded byDavid Henry Mercer
Succeeded byJohn L. Kennedy
Personal details
Gilbert Monell Hitchcock

(1859-09-18)September 18, 1859
Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.
DiedFebruary 3, 1934(1934-02-03) (aged 74)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Resting placeForest Lawn Memorial Park
Political partyDemocratic
Jessie Crounse
(m. 1883; died 1925)
Martha Harris
(m. 1927)
RelativesLorenzo Crounse (Father-in-law)
EducationUniversity of Michigan, Ann Arbor (LLB)

Gilbert Monell Hitchcock (September 18, 1859 – February 3, 1934) was an American congressman and U.S. Senator from Nebraska, and the founder of the Omaha World-Herald newspaper.[1]

Life and career

Bust of Hitchcock created by George Lundeen in 1985 for the Nebraska Hall of Fame.

Born in Omaha, Nebraska, Hitchcock was the son of U.S. Senator Phineas Warren Hitchcock of Nebraska. He attended the public schools of Omaha and the gymnasium at Baden-Baden, Germany. He graduated in 1881 from the law department of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor, where he was admitted to the Zeta Psi fraternity;[2] he was then admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Omaha in 1882. He continued the practice of law until 1885, when he established and edited the Omaha Evening World; four years later, he purchased the Nebraska Morning Herald and consolidated the two into the morning and evening editions of the Omaha World-Herald.[3]

On August 30, 1883, he married Jessie Crounse,[4] the daughter of Nebraska Supreme Court justice and future governor Lorenzo Crounse.

His first wife died on May 8, 1925, and on June 1, 1927, he married Martha Harris, of Memphis, TN.[4]

His family had traditionally been Republicans, but Gilbert broke tradition and became a Democrat in response to agricultural issues and the leadership of fellow Nebraskan William Jennings Bryan.[5]

Hitchcock was an unsuccessful Democratic candidate for the Congress in 1898; four years later, he was elected as a Democrat to the Fifty-eighth Congress (March 4, 1903 – March 3, 1905). He was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1904 to the Fifty-ninth Congress. Hitchcock was elected as a Democrat to the Sixtieth and Sixty-first Congresses (March 4, 1907 – March 3, 1911).

He did not seek renomination in 1910, having become a candidate for the United States Senate. Hitchcock was elected as a Democrat to the Senate by the legislature on January 18, 1911; he was reelected (by direct election) in 1916 and served from March 4, 1911, to March 3, 1923. During his two terms, he was the chairman of the Committee on the Philippines (Sixty-third through Sixty-fifth Congresses), the Committee on Foreign Relations (a portion of the Sixty-fifth Congress), and the Committee on Forest Reservations and Game Protection (Sixty-sixth Congress). As Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, he was a leading advocate of the League of Nations [5] and the Treaty of Versailles.[6]

Hitchcock was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1922 and for election in 1930. After the end of his Senate service, he resumed newspaper work in Omaha. He retired from active business in 1933 and moved to Washington, D.C., where he died on February 3, 1934.[1] He was interred in Forest Lawn Memorial Park in Omaha. Gilbert M. Hitchcock Elementary School and Hitchcock Park in Omaha were named in his honor.[7]

The newspaper was then led by his son-in-law Henry Doorly, husband of Hitchcock's daughter Margaret.

Collections of Senator Hitchcock's papers are housed at the Library of Congress and Nebraska State Historical Society.[8][9]

In 1984 Hitchcock was inducted into the Nebraska Hall of Fame.

See also


  1. ^ a b "Nebraska Democrat dies in Washington". Kentucky New Era. Hopkinsville. Associated Press. February 3, 1934. p. 1.
  2. ^ Baird, William Raymond (1915). Baird's Manual of American College Fraternities, pp.349-355
  3. ^ Walter, Katherine. "Early Nebraska Journalists". Nebraska Newspapers. University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
  4. ^ a b "G.M. Hitchcock, 74, Ex-Senator, Dead". February 3, 1934. p. 13. Retrieved September 25, 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Biography: Gilbert Monell Hitchcock". Retrieved 2009-10-15.
  6. ^ "Hitchcock, Gilbert Monell". Retrieved 2009-10-15.
  7. ^ "Omaha Public Schools". Archived from the original on 2009-03-23. Retrieved 2009-10-15.
  8. ^ "Gilbert M. Hitchcock papers, 1910-1935". Library of Congress.
  9. ^ "Gilbert Monell Hitchcock, 1859-1934 [RG3640.AM]". History Nebraska.

Further reading

U.S. House of Representatives Preceded byDavid Henry Mercer Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom Nebraska's 2nd congressional district 1903–1905 Succeeded byJohn L. Kennedy Preceded byJohn L. Kennedy Member of the U.S. House of Representativesfrom Nebraska's 2nd congressional district 1907–1911 Succeeded byCharles O. Lobeck U.S. Senate Preceded byElmer Burkett U.S. Senator (Class 1) from Nebraska 1911–1923 Served alongside: Norris Brown, George W. Norris Succeeded byRobert B. Howell Preceded bySimon Guggenheim Chair of the Senate Philippines Committee 1913–1918 Succeeded byJohn F. Shafroth Preceded byWilliam J. Stone Chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee 1918–1919 Succeeded byHenry Cabot Lodge Preceded byGeorge P. McLean Chair of the Senate Forest Reservations Committee 1919–1921 Position abolished Party political offices First Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator from Nebraska(Class 1) 1916, 1922 Succeeded byRichard Lee Metcalfe Preceded byThomas S. Martin Chair of the Senate Democratic Caucus(Acting) 1919–1920 Succeeded byOscar Underwoodas Senate Democratic Leader Preceded byJ. J. Thomas Democratic nominee for U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Nebraska 1930 Succeeded byTerry Carpenter