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Virgil Chapman

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Virgil Chapman

Virgil Munday Chapman
United States Senator
from Kentucky
In office
January 3, 1949 – March 8, 1951
Preceded by John S. Cooper
Succeeded by Thomas R. Underwood
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 6th district
In office
January 3, 1935 – January 3, 1949
Preceded by Brent Spence
Succeeded by Thomas R. Underwood
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 7th district
In office
March 4, 1931 – January 3, 1935
Preceded by Robert E. Lee Blackburn
Succeeded by Andrew J. May
In office
March 4, 1925 – March 3, 1929
Preceded by Joseph W. Morris
Succeeded by Robert E. Lee Blackburn
Personal details
Born (1895-03-15)March 15, 1895
Middleton, Kentucky
Died March 8, 1951(1951-03-08) (aged 55)
Bethesda, Maryland
Political party Democratic

Virgil Munday Chapman (March 15, 1895 – March 8, 1951), a Democrat, represented Kentucky in the United States House of Representatives and in the United States Senate.

Chapman, originally from Middleton, Kentucky, practiced law in Irvine, Kentucky, then Paris, Kentucky, then Lexington, Kentucky. He was married to Mary Chapman and had one daughter, Elizabeth.

In 1924 Chapman was elected to the United States House of Representatives and served two terms representing Kentucky's 7th Congressional District in the House, 1925-1929. In 1928 Chapman lost his House seat in the Republican landslide as Herbert Hoover was elected president. Chapman was ousted that year by Republican Robert E. Lee Blackburn but defeated Blackburn in a rematch two years later, in 1930. Chapman, re-elected to the House in 1930, served two terms, 1931-1935, representing the 7th district. Chapman then was elected to represent Kentucky's 6th district in the House and held that seat from 1935 through 1949.

In 1948 Chapman defeated incumbent John Sherman Cooper for a seat in the United States Senate. An automobile accident in Washington, DC killed Chapman on March 8, 1951. He was buried in the Paris Cemetery. Later in life, Chapman was said to have suffered from alcoholism. In Robert Caro's Pulitzer Prize winning book "Master of the Senate," Chapman is chronicled as a Senator who was routinely inebriated at work in the US Senate.[1]

Chapman was succeeded in both the House of Representatives and the Senate by Thomas R. Underwood. This is rare but not unique — Dan Quayle, William Hathaway, Spark Matsunaga, Henry C. Hansbrough, and Jonathan Chace were all also succeeded by the same person in both the House and Senate.

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Joseph W. Morris
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 7th congressional district

1925 – 1929
Succeeded by
Robert E. Lee Blackburn
Preceded by
Robert E. Lee Blackburn
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 7th congressional district

1931 – 1935
Succeeded by
Andrew J. May
Preceded by
Brent Spence
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 6th congressional district

1935 – 1949
Succeeded by
Thomas R. Underwood
United States Senate
Preceded by
John Sherman Cooper
U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Kentucky
January 3, 1949 – March 8, 1951
Served alongside: Alben W. Barkley, Garrett L. Withers, Earle C. Clements
Succeeded by
Thomas R. Underwood

References

  1. ^ Caro, Robert. Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 2009. P 338.
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