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Coke R. Stevenson

Coke R. Stevenson  

Timeline

Coke Stevenson

Texas Governor
August 4, 1941 -
January 21, 1947

Born: March 20, 1888, in a log cabin in Mason County, Texas

Early Career: Stevenson attended a country school (seven years of three-month school terms), then went into business as a teenager hauling freight between Junction and Brady. Starting as a janitor at a Junction bank, he became a bookkeeper and cashier and studied law at night. As a young man he was involved with many small businesses in Kimble County, then served as county attorney and county judge. He entered the Texas House of Representatives in 1928 and was elected speaker of the House in 1933 and lieutenant governor in 1938. He became governor when W. Lee O'Daniel resigned to become a U.S. senator. He was overwhelmingly reelected, and his term as governor was the longest of Texas governor up to that time.

Accomplishments: Stevenson concerned himself with soil conservation, expansion of and permanent financing for a state highway system, expansion of the University of Texas, and increases in teacher's salaries. He emphasized conservative fiscal policies and converted the state's deficit into a surplus by the time he left office.

Later years: Stevenson became the center of national attention during his race for the U.S. Senate in 1948, in which he ran against Congressman Lyndon Baines Johnson. The election was the closest senatorial race in the nation's history. Stevenson appeared to be the winner when an amended return was filed from Jim Wells County giving Johnson enough to win by 87 votes. Stevenson contested the election all the way to the United States Supreme Court. He took his defeat bitterly and retired from public life. He died on June 28, 1975.

Handbook of Texas article

Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor; U.S. enters World War II

Apr 24 1942
Texas assigned war bond quota of $18.6 million; 750,000 Texans will serve in the armed forces during the war

May 16 1942
Oveta Culp Hobby becomes director of the WACs

Anglo-American landings in North Africa

Ration books introduced

Polio epidemic

Salvage drives

Jun 1943
Beaumont race riot

Sep 9 1943
36th Infantry Division leads landing at Salerno; fights in Italy and Germany, awarded 15 Congressional Medals of Honor

Apr 3 1944
Supreme Court rules Texas "white primary" illegal

D-Day landings

30 percent inflation

Popular radio shows include The Red Skelton Show,
The Green Hornet
, Superman, Inner Sanctum, The Fred Allen Show, One Man's Family, and Queen for a Day

Victory in Europe

Atomic bombs dropped on Japan; Japan surrenders and World War II ends; 57 million killed in the war; 291,000 Americans

  More images

Link - Letter from Admiral Nimitz

Letter from Admiral Chester Nimitz

Link - Telegram on Beaumont riot

Telegram on the 1943 riot
in Beaumont



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