|Chair of the Senate Naval Affairs Committee|
March 4, 1933 – May 8, 1936
|Preceded by||Frederick Hale|
|Succeeded by||David I. Walsh|
|Chair of the Senate Expenditures in the Treasury Department Committee|
March 4, 1917 – March 4, 1919
|Preceded by||Joseph Taylor Robinson|
|Succeeded by||M. Hoke Smith|
|United States Senator|
March 4, 1917 – May 8, 1936
|Preceded by||Nathan P. Bryan|
|Succeeded by||Scott M. Loftin|
|21st Governor of Florida|
January 7, 1913 – January 2, 1917
|Preceded by||Albert W. Gilchrist|
|Succeeded by||Sidney Johnston Catts|
|19th Attorney General of Florida|
January 5, 1909 – January 7, 1913
|Governor||Albert W. Gilchrist|
|Preceded by||W. H. Ellis|
|Succeeded by||Thomas F. West|
|President of the Florida Senate|
|Preceded by||Frank Adams|
|Succeeded by||W. Hunt Harris|
|Mayor of Lakeland, Florida|
|Preceded by||James P. Thompson|
|Succeeded by||Samuel L. A. Clonts|
|Born||April 9, 1876|
Macon County, Alabama
|Died||May 8, 1936 (aged 60)|
(m. 1900; died 1922)
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Branch/service||United States Army|
|Years of service||1898|
Park Monroe Trammell (April 9, 1876 – May 8, 1936), was an American attorney and politician from the state of Florida. Trammell represented Florida in the United States Senate from 1917 until his death in 1936. As chair of the Senate Naval Affairs Committee, Trammell was essential in the creation of several naval bills that revitalized the United States Navy. Trammell previously served as the Governor of Florida and Florida Attorney General.
Trammell was born on April 9, 1876, in Macon County, Alabama. When he was a young child, Trammell and his parents moved to a citrus farm near Lakeland, Florida. Trammell attended Vanderbilt University in 1898, before enlisting in the United States Army during the Spanish-American War. Trammell served in the Quartermaster Corps, and was stationed in Tampa, Florida.
After the war, Trammell enrolled at Cumberland University, graduating in 1899. He was admitted into the Florida Bar the same year.
Trammell, a Democrat, was elected mayor of Lakeland in 1900 and re-elected to a second term in 1901. In 1902, Trammell was elected to the Florida House of Representatives, representing Polk County. He served in the Florida House until 1904, when he was elected to the Florida Senate for Polk County. From 1905 until 1907, Trammell was the President of the Florida Senate. He resigned from the senate the following year, and returned to private practice.
In 1909, Trammell was appointed to serve as the 19th Florida Attorney General by Governor Albert W. Gilchrist.
In the 1912 gubernatorial election, Trammell ran to succeed Gilchrist as Governor of Florida. After securing the Democratic nomination, Trammell defeated four other candidates in the general election, receiving 80% of the vote. His closest competitor was Socialist Thomas W. Cox.
As governor, Trammell endorsed a law in the Florida Legislature that would control spending in election campaigns, and also established a state tax commission in order to equalize property assessments across various counties. However, Trammell's governorship is most known for his blatant racism, endorsing racial segregation and overlooking the lynching of African Americans through the state. While Trammell was state attorney general, none of the 29 lynchings of black men during his term were prosecuted, nor were the 21 that occurred during his governorship.
With the ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment on April 8, 1913, U.S. Senators were to be popularly elected, rather than being elected by their state legislatures. Trammell ran for the U.S. Senate in the 1916 election, defeating incumbent Nathan P. Bryan in the Democratic primary. He went on to defeat his Republican opponent, newsman William R. O'Neal, with nearly 83% of the vote.
During his tenure as senator, Trammell was not afraid to deviate from his party. In 1916, Trammell, a member of the Old Right, an informal group of paleoconservatives in both major parties, staunchly opposed President Woodrow Wilson's call for conscription in World War I. Additionally, he opposed U.S. Supreme Court nominees Harlan F. Stone in 1925 and John J. Parker in 1930, the prior being successfully appointed to the court.
During the Great Depression, Trammell joined the Conservative Coalition, a group of conservative congressmen opposed to President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal, claiming it was too liberal, despite his overall support for Roosevelt. Opinions on the New Deal were additionally changing across the South, with many Southern Democrats who initially supported the legislation beginning to vote against it.
In Florida, the test of voters' approval of the New Deal was the Democratic primary of the 1934 U.S. Senate election, in which Trammell, who generally ran unopposed in the primaries, faced the stiffest competition of his entire career. Trammell faced former State Representative Claude Pepper, attorney Charles A. Mitchell, State Senator James F. Sikes, and Florida Democratic Committeewoman Hortense K. Wells. Though the race was mostly a competition between Trammell and Pepper, a social liberal, the latter three candidates pulled enough votes from Trammell to send the race into a runoff election between Trammell and Pepper. Trammell defeated Pepper in the runoff, winning by just a 2% margin. Trammell was unopposed in the general election.
Earlier in 1934, Trammell co-sponsored the Vinson-Trammell Act, along with House Naval Affairs Committee Chair Carl Vinson, which authorized the replacement of obsolete ship by construction of new ships in order to compete with the Japanese Empire.
During his time in the Senate, Trammell was often referred to as the most useless member of the body, having missed 642 out of 3,168 roll call votes across his entire tenure. Despite this, he was still popular among Florida voters.
Trammell was the chairman of the Senate Expenditures in the Treasury Department Committee from 1917 until 1919, and of the Senate Naval Affairs Committee from 1933 until his death in 1936.
Trammell died at his home in Washington, D.C., on May 8, 1936. He is buried in Lakeland's Roselawn Cemetery.
Trammell's senatorial papers were donated to the Lakeland Public Library and the University of Florida after his death. His gubernatorial papers reside in the Florida State Archives. In 1955, the Lakeland Public Library building was named the Park Trammell Building. It now houses the Greater Lakeland Chamber of Commerce.
Built in 1955, the Park Trammell Building is a nine-story low-rise building in Tampa, which houses the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.
The Park Trammell Building at the Florida State Mental Hospital in Chattahoochee, Florida, dedicated in 1956, is used to house the geriatric population of the institution.
Trammell married Virginia Darby on November 21, 1900. They were married until her death in 1922. He later married Beatrice Padgett, a divorced woman with a son, in 1934. Trammell had no children of his own with either woman.
Trammell was a member of the Freemasons, the Knights of Pythias, and the Woodmen of the World.
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||131,780||100.00%||+31.47%|
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||103,028||51.00%||N/A|
|Democratic||Claude D. Pepper||98,978||49.00%||N/A|
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||162,642||38.02%||N/A|
|Democratic||Claude D. Pepper||158,792||37.12%||N/A|
|Democratic||C. A. Mitchell||60,910||14.24%||N/A|
|Democratic||James F. Sikes||29,116||6.81%||N/A|
|Democratic||Hortense K. Wells||16,334||3.82%||N/A|
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||153,816||68.53%||-19.74%|
|Republican||Barclay H. Warburton||70,633||31.47%||N/A|
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||138,534||57.97%||N/A|
|Democratic||John W. Martin||100,454||42.03%||N/A|
|Democratic||Park Trammell (inc.)||45,707||88.27%||+5.41%|
|Independent Republican||W. C. Lawson||6,074||11.73%||N/A|
|Republican||William R. O'Neal||8,774||12.45%||N/A|
|Socialist||R. L. Goodwin||3,304||4.69%||N/A|
|Socialist||Thomas W. Cox||6,934||7.15%||+1.36%|
|Republican||William R. O'Neal||5,292||5.46%||-9.94%|
|Progressive||William C. Hodges||4,628||4.78%||N/A|
|Prohibition||J. W. Bingham||2,122||2.19%||N/A|