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Harley Martin Kilgore (January 11, 1893 – February 28, 1956) was a United States Senator from West Virginiamarker.

Born in Brown, West Virginiamarker, he attended the public schools and graduated from the law department of West Virginia Universitymarker at Morgantownmarker in 1914 and was admitted to the bar the same year.

He taught school in Hancock, West Virginiamarker in 1914 and 1915, and organized the first high school in Raleigh County, West Virginiamarker in the latter year. He was the school's first principal for a year, and commenced the practice of law in Beckley, West Virginiamarker in 1916. During the First World War he served in the infantry from 1917 and was discharged as a captain in 1920; in 1921 he organized the West Virginia National Guard and retired as a colonel in 1953.

He was judge of the Raleigh County criminal court from 1933 to 1940, and was elected as a Democrat to the U.S. Senate in 1940, and won reelection twice. He was a member of the Senate from January 3, 1941 until his death in Bethesda Naval Hospitalmarker in 1956. During the Eighty-fourth Congress, he was chairman of the committee on the judiciary. Also while in the Senate, he chaired the Kilgore Committee that oversaw U.S. Mobilization efforts for and World War II, and helped set up the War Mobilization Board. He also helped establish the National Science Foundation in 1950.

Senator Kilgore was West Virginia's favorite-son candidate in 1948 Democratic presidential primaries and won his home state unopposed.

He died in 1956, aged 63 and was interred was in Arlington National Cemeterymarker.


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