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Herbert Spencer Hadley

Gov. Herbert Spencer Hadley

  • January 11, 1909 - January 13, 1913
  • Republican
  • February 20, 1872
  • December 1, 1927
  • Kansas
  • University of Kansas, Northwestern University
  • Married Agnes Lee; three children


HERBERT S. HADLEY was born in Olathe, Kansas on February 20, 1872. His education was attained at the University of Kansas, from which he graduated in 1892, and at Northwestern University, from which he earned a law degree in 1894. He established his legal career in Kansas City, serving as the first assistant city counselor. Hadley first entered politics as prosecuting attorney of Jackson County, a position to which he was elected in 1900. He also served as the attorney general of Missouri from 1905 to 1909. Hadley next secured the Republican gubernatorial nomination, and was elected governor in November 1908. During his tenure, a railroad passenger rate discrimination law was sanctioned, and a woman’s nine-hour labor law was authorized. After completing his term, Hadley left office and retired from political life. He returned to his legal practice, as well as serving as the attorney to the Interstate Commerce Commission from 1913 to 1916. In 1917, Hadley developed health problems, prompting him to move to Colorado. He taught law at the University of Colorado, and served as counsel to the Colorado State Railroad Commission. Shortly after returning to Missouri in 1923, Hadley became chancellor of Washington University, a position he held until 1927. Governor Herbert S. Hadley passed away on December 1, 1927, and was buried in the Riverview Cemetery in Jefferson City, Missouri.


Messages and Proclamations of the Governors of the State of Missouri (Produced by the Missouri Historical Society)

Missouri State Archives (Jefferson City, MO)

Official Manual of the State of Missouri (2005-2006)
Previous editions are not available online, but are in hard copy in the State Archives.

The Political Graveyard

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.

Washington University in St. Louis

Recent Missouri Governors