ALFRED M. LANDON, the twenty-sixth governor of Kansas, was born in West Middlesex, Pennsylvania on September 9, 1887. His education was attained at the Marietta Academy in Ohio and at the University of Kansas, where he earned a law degree in 1908. He established a career in the oil business, becoming a successful independent oil producer. During World War I, he served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army chemical warfare division. Landon entered politics in 1914, serving as chairman of the Progressive Party, however, his political affiliation later switched to the Republican Party. He served three months as the executive secretary to Governor Henry Allen in 1922, and was chairman of the Republican State Committee from 1928 to 1930. Landon won the 1932 Republican gubernatorial nomination and was sworn into the governorship on January 9, 1933. He was reelected to a second term in 1934. During his tenure, the state government was restructured, conservation programs were initiated, fees, taxes and utility rates were all reduced, farm and unemployment aid was secured, local government finance reform was authorized, and a state income tax was sanctioned. Also, a scandal involving forged bonds was dealt with, the policies of the New Deal were supported, a stronger corporation commission was planned, and standardized bookkeeping practices for local governments was established. After running unsuccessfully for president in 1936, Landon finished out his gubernatorial term, leaving office on January 11, 1937. He later served as a delegate to the 1940, 1944, and 1948 Republican National Conventions, and was a member of the Kansas Commission on Constitutional Revision. Governor Alfred M. Landon died on October 12, 1987, and was buried at the Mt. Hope Cemetery in Topeka, Kansas.

Sources:

Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 2, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

National Park Service

The Political Graveyard