WILLIAMS, John Sharp, (1854 - 1932)

Senate Years of Service: 1911-1923
Party: Democrat

Library of Congress

WILLIAMS, John Sharp, (grandson of Christopher Harris Williams), a Representative and a Senator from Mississippi; born in Memphis, Tenn., July 30, 1854; after the death of his parents moved to Yazoo County, Miss.; attended private schools, the Kentucky Military Institute near Frankfort, the University of the South, Sewanee, Tenn., the University of Virginia at Charlottesville, and the University of Heidelberg, at Baden, Germany; subsequently studied law at the University of Virginia and in Memphis, Tenn.; admitted to the bar in 1877; moved to Yazoo City, Miss., in 1878; engaged in the practice of law and also interested in cotton planting; elected as a Democrat to the Fifty-third and to the seven succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1893-March 3, 1909); was not a candidate for renomination in 1908; minority leader in the Fifty-eighth, Fifty-ninth, and Sixtieth Congresses; chairman, Committee on Party Leaders (Fifty-eighth through Sixtieth Congresses); elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate in 1910; reelected in 1916 and served from March 4, 1911, to March 3, 1923; declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1922; chairman, Committee to Audit and Control the Contingent Expenses (Sixty-third Congress), Committee on the Library (Sixty-fourth and Sixty-fifth Congresses), Committee on the University of the United States (Sixty-sixth Congress); retired from public life and lived on his plantation, ’Cedar Grove,’ near Yazoo City, Miss., until his death there September 27, 1932; interment in the family cemetery on his plantation.


American National Biography; Dictionary of American Biography; Dickson, Harris. An Old-Fashioned Senator: A Story Biography of John Sharp Williams. New York: Frederick Stokes Co., 1925; Osborn, George C. John Sharp Williams: Planter-Statesman of the Deep South. Gloucester, Mass.: P. Smith, 1964.