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Morris Sheppard
John Morris Sheppard (May 28, 1875 - April 9, 1941) was a Democratic United States Congressman and United States Senator from Texasmarker.


He was born in Morris County, Texasmarker to lawyer and later judge and United States Congressman, John Levi Sheppard.

Sheppard studied at the University of Texas at Austinmarker and earned a law degree in 1897. After attending Yale Universitymarker, he began practicing law with his father in Pittsburg, Texasmarker and later Texarkanamarker.

In 1902, Morris Sheppard was elected as a Democrat to replace his deceased father in the United States House of Representatives. He held a seat until his resignation in 1913, when he succeeded in his bid to fill a vacancy in the Senate. During his tenure, he was a vocal supporter of the temperance movement. He helped write the Webb-Kenyon Act (1913) to regulate the interstate shipment of alcoholic beverages, authored the Sheppard Bone-Dry Act (1916) to impose prohibition on the District of Columbiamarker, introduced the Senate resolution for the Eighteenth Amendment establishing national prohibition, and helped write the Volstead Act which provided for its enforcement. Sheppard held his Senate seat until his death in Washington, D.C.marker in 1941, serving as Democratic whip between 1929 and 1933.

Sheppard is perhaps best known for asserting that "there is as much chance of repealing the eighteenth amendment as there is for a hummingbird to fly to the planet Mars with the Washington Monument tied to its tail."

Sheppard's wife, Lucile Sanderson, married the other Texas senator, Tom Connally, the year after Sheppard's death. Sheppard and his wife were the grandparents of Connie Mack III, U.S. Senator from Floridamarker, and great-grandparents of Connie Mack IV, U.S. Representative from Florida.

Other Sheppard grandsons were Richard Sheppard Arnold (1936-2004) and Morris Sheppard "Buzz" Arnold (born 1941), federal appeals court judges in Arkansasmarker. The federal courthouse in Little Rockmarker is named in Judge Richard Arnold's honor. Judge Morris Arnold, a Republican, remains on the Eighth Circuit court under senior status.

Future U.S. President and then-representative Lyndon B. Johnson ran unsuccessfully for Sheppard's Senate seat in the special election called after Sheppard's death.

External links


  1. U.S. Senate: Art & History Home > Origins & Development > Senate Spouses at
  • Washington Post, September 25, 1930, p. 5.

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