William A. Massey
United States Senator
from Nevada
In office
July 1, 1912 – January 29, 1913
Appointed byTasker Oddie
Preceded byGeorge S. Nixon
Succeeded byKey Pittman
Member of the Nevada State Assembly
In office
Personal details
Born(1856-10-07)October 7, 1856
Trumbull County, Ohio
DiedMarch 5, 1914(1914-03-05) (aged 57)
Litchfield, California, U.S.
Political partyRepublican

William Alexander Massey (October 7, 1856 – March 5, 1914) was an American politician who served as a member of the United States Senate from Nevada.

Early life

Born in Trumbull County, Ohio, he moved with his parents to Edgar County, Illinois in 1865. He attended public schools before studying at Union Christian College in Merom, Indiana and the Indiana Asbury University (now De Pauw University) in Greencastle, Indiana. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1877.


After being admitted to the bar, Massey began practicing law in Sullivan, Indiana. He moved to San Diego, California in 1886 and to Nevada in 1887, where he prospected, mined, and practiced law in Elko.

Massey was a member of the Nevada Assembly from 1892 to 1894, and was district attorney of Elko County from 1894 to 1896. He was a justice of the Nevada Supreme Court from 1896 to 1902, when he resigned. He moved to Reno, Nevada and resumed the practice of law, and was appointed as a Republican to the United States Senate by Governor Tasker Oddie, to fill the vacancy caused by the death of George S. Nixon.

Massey served in the Senate from July 1, 1912 to January 29, 1913. He was defeated for election to the remainder of Nixon's term by Democrat Key Pittman. While in the Senate, he was chairman of the Committee on Mines and Mining.

After his time in the Senate, he resumed the practice of law in Reno, Nevada.


Massey died on a train near Litchfield, California in March 1914.[1]


  1. ^ "Senator Suddenly Stricken on Train going to Court". Reno State Journal. March 6, 1914. Retrieved May 24, 2017 – via Newspapers.com.Free to read
Party political offices
Preceded by
George S. Nixon
Republican nominee for U.S. Senator from Nevada
(Class 1)

Succeeded by
Samuel Platt
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
George S. Nixon
U.S. senator (Class 1) from Nevada
Served alongside: Francis G. Newlands
Succeeded by
Key Pittman