William Hopkinson Cox

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William H. Cox
30th Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky
In office
December 10, 1907 – December 12, 1911
Governor Augustus E. Willson
Preceded by William P. Thorne
Succeeded by Edward J. McDermott
Personal details
Born (1856-10-22)October 22, 1856
Maysville, Kentucky
Died October 13, 1950(1950-10-13) (aged 93)
Mason County, Kentucky
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Susan E. Farrow
Religion Episcopal
Signature William H. Cox

William Hopkinson Cox (October 22, 1856 – October 13, 1950) was an American politician, who served as the 30th Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky from 1907 to 1911, under Governor Augustus E. Willson.

Early life and family[edit]

William Cox was born October 22, 1856 in Maysville, Kentucky.[1] He was the son of William Hopkinson and Elizabeth R. (Newman) Cox.[2] He was of Norman ancestry – his family name originally being DeCaux – and was a descendent of William the Conqueror.[2] His paternal grandfather, George Cox, immigrated from London, England in 1817 and founded a dry goods store in Maysville, Kentucky in 1819.[2]

Cox was educated in the private schools of Maysville.[2] He began working in the family store at age fifteen, and he and his brother George assumed operation of the store when their father died in 1885.[2] In 1904, the brothers sold the successful business to the firm of D. Hunt and Son.[3] In 1889, Cox became president of the State National Bank in Maysville, holding this position until 1901.[1][2] He was also director of the Electric Light and Gas Company for a time.[2]

Cox took an active part in the development of Maysville, financing the construction of the Cox Building in that city.[4] He also owned a housing terrace on Market Street between Third and Fourth Streets in Maysville, which became known as the Cox Block of Maysville.[2][4]

In 1880, Cox married Susan E. Farrow, niece of the Chief Justice Peters of the Kentucky Court of Appeals.[5] They had one daughter, Roberta Stockton (Cox) Wheat.[4] Cox and his wife were faithful adherents of the Episcopal church.[4]

Political career[edit]

For seven years, Cox served on the Maysville City Council, presiding over the Council for five of those years.[1] In 1888, he was chosen as the Republican nominee for a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, but he declined the nomination.[5] In November 1893, Cox was elected mayor of the city of Maysville.[5] He was the first mayor of the city elected under the new Kentucky Constitution of 1891.[1]

Cox was a delegate to the 1892 Republican National Convention that nominated Benjamin Harrison for a second term as President of the United States.[1] He was chosen as Kentucky's representative to the delegation that officially notified Harrison of his renomination.[1]

Cox was elected to represent Mason and Lewis counties in the Kentucky Senate.[4] He was re-elected once, serving a total of eight years.[1] During his term, he supported the local option solution to the question of prohibition.[1] In 1906, he received every Republican vote in the legislature for election to the United States Senate, but lost to Democrat Thomas H. Paynter.[1]

Cox was elected Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky in 1907, serving under Governor Augustus E. Willson.[4] He died October 13, 1950.


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Legislative History, p. 29
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Biographical Cyclopedia, p. 187
  3. ^ Johnson, p. 843
  4. ^ a b c d e f Johnson, p. 844
  5. ^ a b c Biographical Cyclopedia, p. 188


Political offices
Preceded by
William P. Thorne
Lieutenant Governor of Kentucky
Succeeded by
Edward J. McDermott