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George Hoar: A Featured Biography

George Hoar

At the end of his life, George F. Hoar was heralded as the last senator in the mold of Charles Sumner and Daniel Webster. Elected to the Senate from Massachusetts in 1877, he was a vocal opponent of the direct election of senators. Hoar was nevertheless a progressive senator, supporting civil rights, women’s suffrage, and anti-trust laws. Hoar co-authored the Sherman Anti-Trust Act of 1890. His opposition to the imperialism of the time was legendary; in fact, his critics accused him of igniting a riot in the Philippines with a speech he gave against American acquisition of the islands. As chairman of the Committee on Privileges and Elections, he helped craft the Presidential Succession Act of 1886. He was most proud of his work on the Committee on Claims, which took on great importance in settling damage claims following the Civil War.