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James Middleton Cox


47th & 49th Governor of Ohio
In office
January 13, 1913 – January 11, 1915
January 8, 1917 – January 10, 1921
Lieutenant W. A. Greenlund (1913-1915)
Earl D. Bloom (1917-1919)
Clarence J. Brown (1919-1921)
Preceded by Judson Harmon (1913)
Frank B. Willis (1917)
Succeeded by Frank B. Willis (1915)
Harry L. Davis (1921)

Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from 's Ohio's 3rd district
In office
March 4, 1909 – January 12, 1913
Preceded by J. Eugene Harding
Succeeded by Warren Gard

Born March 31, 1870(1870-03-31)
Jacksonburg, Ohio,
United States
Died July 15, 1957 (aged 87)
Kettering, Ohio,
United States
Political party Democratic
Children 8
Religion United Brethren in Christ
Signature

James Middleton Cox (March 31, 1870 – July 15, 1957) was a Governor of Ohio, U.S. Representative from Ohio and Democratic candidate for President of the United States in the election of 1920.

Cox was born in the tiny Butler County, Ohio, village of Jacksonburg. Cox practiced a variety of trades throughout his life: high school teacher, reporter, owner and editor of several newspapers, and secretary to Congressman Paul J. Sorg.

While a reporter, Cox once went to a town where a massive railroad accident had occurred. Other reporters went directly to the scene of the accident, but Cox instead went to the town's only telegraph office, where he hired the telegraph operator to begin transmitting the Bible to his newspaper, telling the operator he would be back. (Under the law of the day, once a message was begun, it could not be interrupted by others.) Cox then went to the accident site, gathered all the information he needed, and wrote his article. He then returned to the telegraph office, which he found full of frustrated reporters waiting to make use of the telegraph. Cox handed his article to the telegraph operator and thus scooped all of the other reporters.

Cox/Roosevelt poster
Roosevelt (left) and Cox (right) at a campaign appearance in Washington, D.C., 1920

Cox represented Ohio in the United States House of Representatives (1909-1913), resigning after winning election as Governor of Ohio (1913-1915, and 1917-1921). A capable and well-liked reformer, he was nominated a candidate for the presidency by the Democratic party while serving as Governor. Cox supported the internationalist policies of Woodrow Wilson and favored U.S. entry into the League of Nations. However, Cox was defeated in the 1920 Presidential Election by a fellow Ohioan, U.S. Senator Warren Harding of Marion, Ohio. The public had grown weary of the turmoil of the Wilson years, and eagerly accepted Harding's call for a "return to normalcy." Cox's running mate was future president Franklin D. Roosevelt. One of the better known analyses of the 1920 election is in author Irving Stone's book about defeated Presidential candidates, They Also Ran. Stone rated Cox as superior in every way over Warren Harding, claiming the former would have made a much better President. Stone argued there was never a stronger case in the history of American presidential elections for the proposition that the better man lost.

Cox recorded for The Nation's Forum several times. The campaign speech featured here [1] accuses the Republicans of failing to acknowledge that President Wilson's successful prosecution of the war had, according to Cox, "saved civilization."

Cox was publisher of the Dayton Daily News in Dayton, Ohio, where the newspaper's editorial meeting room is still referred to as the "Governor's Library." The "James M. Cox Dayton International Airport", more commonly referenced simply as Dayton International Airport, was named for Cox as well.

He built a large newspaper enterprise, Cox Enterprises, including the December 1939 purchase of the Atlanta Georgian and Journal just a week before that city hosted the premiere of Gone with the Wind.[1] This deal included radio station WSB, which joined his previous holdings, WHIO in Dayton and WIOD in Miami, to give him "'air' from the Great Lakes on the north to Latin America on the south."[2]

In 1932, 1936, 1940, and 1944, Cox supported and campaigned for the presidential candidacies of Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Cox died at his home, Trail's End, in Kettering, Ohio, in 1957, and was interred in the Woodland Cemetery, Dayton, Ohio.

Cox had six children, one of whom, Anne Cox Chambers, is still a major shareholder in the company; she owned 98% of the company with her sister Barbara Cox Anthony until the latter's death in 2007. The company's headquarters is in Atlanta.

Cox was a member of the Church of the United Brethren in Christ.

Notes

  1. ^ Cox, p.389
  2. ^ Cox, p.387

References

  • Cox, James M., Journey Through My Years, Simon and Schuster, 1946

Source: Library of Congress

External links

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
J. Eugene Harding
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Ohio's 3rd congressional district

1909 – 1913
Succeeded by
Warren Gard
Political offices
Preceded by
Judson Harmon
Governor of Ohio
1913 –1915
Succeeded by
Frank B. Willis
Preceded by
Frank B. Willis
Governor of Ohio
1917 – 1921
Succeeded by
Harry L. Davis
Party political offices
Preceded by
Woodrow Wilson
Democratic Party presidential candidate
1920
Succeeded by
John W. Davis







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