James A. Reed
|James Alexander Reed|
|United States Senator
March 4, 1911 – March 4, 1929
|Preceded by||William Warner|
|Succeeded by||Roscoe C. Patterson|
November 9, 1861|
|Died||September 8, 1944
Reed was born on a farm in Richland County, Ohio. He moved with his family to Cedar Rapids, Iowa at the age of 3. He went to public schools and attended Coe College. He became a lawyer and moved to Kansas City, Missouri in 1887.
Reed served as a city councilor of Kansas City from 1897 to 1898, and as prosecutor of Jackson County from 1898 to 1900. He unsuccessfully prosecuted Jesse E. James, son of the bandit Jesse James, for train robbery in 1899. He was elected Kansas City mayor from 1900 to 1904.
As mayor, Reed rocketed to national fame after overseeing the "Kansas City Spirit" construction of Convention Hall in 90 days in order to host the 1900 Democratic National Convention. The original Convention Hall had opened in 1899. It burned down on April 4, 1900. The Convention was scheduled to be held on July 4. Reed marshaled resources and it opened in time for the convention.
In 1910, he was elected to the United States Senate from Missouri as a Democrat. He served in the Senate for three terms, from 1911 until 1929, when he decided to retire. Unlike many members of his party, he opposed the League of Nations. He sought and failed to receive the Democratic nomination for President. He served as chairman of the Committee on Weights and Measures from 1917 to 1921.
One of his biggest contributions to the State of Missouri came in 1913 when as a member of the Senate Banking Committee he changed his vote to break a deadlock to pass the Federal Reserve Act which resulted in Missouri getting 2 of the 12 Federal Reserve Banks (in St. Louis and Kansas City). Missouri is the only state with multiple headquarters of the Federal Reserve.
In 1927 he opposed the reauthorization of the Sheppard–Towner Act, which had been enacted in 1921 to reduce maternal and infant mortality and improve the health of mothers and babies, and attacked the Children's Bureau for its "excessive" federal funding and the "power and control" Sheppard-Towner gave to Grace Abbott, Bureau Chief. On the floor of the Senate, Reed ridiculed the Children's Bureau and suggested, "We would better reverse the proposition and provide for a committee of mothers to take charge of the old maids [in the Children's Bureau] and teach them how to acquire a husband and have babies of their own."
The same year, Reed unsuccessfully represented Henry Ford in Shapiro v. Ford, a federal libel lawsuit, brought by Aaron Shapiro, leader of the American husbandry movement. Through his newspaper, The Dearborn Independent, Ford had published a series of articles containing excerpts from his book, The International Jew, which amongst other allegations, contended that Shapiro, who was Jewish, and the American husbandry movement were part of an international Jewish conspiracy to defraud American farmers.
In 1929, as Reed was retiring from the Senate, H.L. Mencken wrote a tribute to him, praising Reed for his opposition to what Mencken called "demagogues" and "charlatans" from both political parties.  Reed then retired from politics and moved back to Missouri where he continued to practice law. He was also an active Civitan during this time. He died at his summer home in Oscoda County, Michigan.
See also 
- Little,, L. A. (2012). The Trial of Jesse James, Jr. ISBN 0615597963.
- A Foregone Conclusion: The Founding of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis by James Neal Primm - stlouisfed.org - Retrieved January 1, 2007
- Saker Woeste, Victoria. "Suing Henry Ford: America's First Hate Speech Case". Suing Henry Ford: America's First Hate Speech Case. American Bar Foundation. Retrieved 06/01/12.
- Victoria Saker Woeste | Insecure Equality: Louis Marshall, Henry Ford, and the Problem of Defamatory Antisemitism, 1920–1929 | The Journal of American History, 91.3 | The History Cooperative
- H.L. Mencken, "Editorial," American Mercury, v. 16, no. 64 (April 1929) 410.
- Leonhart, James Chancellor (1962). The Fabulous Octogenarian. Baltimore Maryland: Redwood House, Inc. p. 277.
Lela B. Costin, Two Sisters for Social Justice, Illinois, 1983.
Jan Hults, The Senatorial Career of James Alexander Reed. Unpublished Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Kansas, History, 1987. Bibliography: leaves 317-331.
Lee Meriwether, Jim Reed: Senatorial Immortal; A Biography. Webster Groves, MO: International Mark Twain Society, 1948. 273 pp. illus., ports. 22 cm.
James A. Reed, “The Pestilence of Fanaticism,” American Mercury, v. 5, no. 17 (May 1925) 1-7. 
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James M. Jones
|Mayor of Kansas City, Missouri
Jay H. Neff
|United States Senate|
|United States Senator (Class 1) from Missouri
Served alongside: William J. Stone, Xenophon P. Wilfley, Selden P. Spencer, George H. Williams, Harry B. Hawes
Roscoe C. Patterson