Henry D. Hatfield

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The Honorable
Henry D. Hatfield
Henry Hatfield.jpg
United States Senator
from West Virginia
In office
March 4, 1929 – January 3, 1935
Preceded by Matthew M. Neely
Succeeded by Rush D. Holt, Sr.
14th Governor of West Virginia
In office
March 14, 1913 – March 5, 1917
Preceded by William E. Glasscock
Succeeded by John J. Cornwell
President of the West Virginia Senate
In office
Governor William E. Glasscock
Preceded by L. J. Forman
Succeeded by Samuel V. Woods
Personal details
Born (1875-09-15)September 15, 1875
Mingo County, West Virginia
Died October 23, 1962(1962-10-23) (aged 87)
Huntington, West Virginia
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) South Carolina "Carrie" Bronson Hatfield
Profession Politician
Religion Methodism

Henry Drury Hatfield (September 15, 1875 – October 23, 1962) was a Republican politician from Logan County, West Virginia. He served a term as the 14th Governor of the state, in addition to one term in the United States Senate. Hatfield was nephew to Devil Anse Hatfield, leader of the Hatfield clan.

Hatfield was born in Logan County (present-day Mingo County, West Virginia) on September 15, 1875. He graduated from Franklin College in New Athens, Ohio. He later obtained medical degrees from what is now known as the University of Louisville and later from New York University. In 1895, he married South Carolina "Carrie" Bronson.[1]

He was appointed as surgeon for the Norfolk and Western Railway (1895–1913) and surgeon in chief of State Hospital #1 in Welch, West Virginia (1899–1913). He entered local politics first as commissioner of district roads of McDowell County (1900–1905), eventually becoming member of the State senate (1908–1912), and serving as president of the senate in 1911.

He was elected as Governor of West Virginia in 1912. He began his term by court-martialing forty-nine Socialist leaders, including Mother Jones, and then moving to negotiate a compromise to end the deadly Paint Creek–Cabin Creek strike. The settlement presented to coal operators by Hatfield and the UMWA was staunchly opposed by local Socialists. In response, Hatfield deployed soldiers to force miners to agree to the compromise and ordered presses at Socialist newspapers in Huntington and Charleston destroyed.[2] Following the expiration of his term in 1917, he entered the United States Army as a Major in the Medical Corps, serving as chief of the Surgical Service at Base Hospital No. 36 in Detroit, Michigan.

He was discharged in 1919 and returned to West Virginia. In 1928, he was elected to the United States Senate as a Republican, and served from March 4, 1929 to January 3, 1935. He was defeated in a bid for reelection in 1934.

After leaving the Senate, Hatfield settled in Huntington, West Virginia and established a private medical practice, where he worked until his death in 1962.


  1. "West Virginia's First Ladies," West Virginia Division of Culture and History, June 2007.
  2. David A. Corbin, "Betrayal in the West Virginia Coal Fields: Eugene V. Debs and the Socialist Party of America, 1912-1914," March 1978.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
L. J. Forman
President of the WV Senate
Succeeded by
Samuel V. Woods
Preceded by
William E. Glasscock
Governor of West Virginia
Succeeded by
John J. Cornwell
United States Senate
Preceded by
Matthew M. Neely
Class 1 U.S. Senator from West Virginia
Succeeded by
Rush D. Holt, Sr.