Charles Sumner Hamlin

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Charles Hamlin
Charles Hamlin.jpg
1st Chair of the Federal Reserve
In office
August 10, 1914 – August 10, 1916
President Woodrow Wilson
Deputy Frederic Delano
Preceded by Position established
Succeeded by William Harding
Personal details
Born (1861-08-30)August 30, 1861
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Died April 24, 1938(1938-04-24) (aged 76)
Washington, D.C., U.S.
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Huybertje Pruyn (m. 1898; his death 1938)
Education Harvard University (BA)

Charles Sumner Hamlin (August 30, 1861 – April 24, 1938) was an American lawyer. He was the first Chairman of the Federal Reserve, serving from 1914 to 1916.[1]


Charles Sumner Hamlin was born in Boston, Massachusetts on August 30, 1861, and graduated from Harvard University in 1886. From 1893 to 1897 and again from 1913 to 1914 he was the Assistant Secretary of the Treasury. He twice ran unsuccessfully for governor of Massachusetts, in 1902 and 1910. On August 10, 1914, he was appointed the first Chairman of the Federal Reserve and served in that capacity until August 10, 1916. He lectured at Harvard on government in 1902 and 1903; In 1912 was vice president of the Woodrow Wilson College Men's League and president of the Woodrow Wilson League of Massachusetts; and he published, besides pamphlets on statistical and financial subjects, an Index Digest of Interstate Commerce Laws (1907) and the Index Digest of the Federal Reserve Bulletin (1921).

Hamlin died in Washington, D.C. on April 24, 1938.[1][2][3] He was buried at Forest Hills Cemetery in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts.


In 1898 Sumner married Huybertje Lansing Pruyn (April 8, 1878 – March 6, 1964), the daughter of John V. L. Pruyn and granddaughter of Amasa J. Parker.


Hamlin's papers are archived at the Library of Congress.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Charles S. Hamlin Dies in Washington. First Governor of the Federal Reserve Board Had Served From 1914 to 1936. Treasury Aide Since 1893. Was Member of Many Foreign Commissions. Honored by Japan for Famine Aid Served on Many Commissions Decorated by Japan". New York Times. April 25, 1938. Retrieved 2012-10-27. April 24. Charles Sumner Hamlin, first governor of the Federal Reserve Board, died today after a long illness. He was 76 years old. At his death he was special counsel to the board of governors of the Federal Reserve System. 
  2. ^ "Chas. S. Hamlin Dies in Boston [sic]". Reading Times. Associated Press. April 25, 1938. p. 16. 
  3. ^ Carnegie Endowment (1928). Annual Report. Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. p. 179. 
  4. ^ "Charles Sumner Hamlin". Library of Congress. Retrieved 2009-11-17. Lawyer, politician, assistant secretary of the treasury, and governor of the Federal Reserve Board. Correspondence, diaries, manuscripts of writings and speeches, biographical notes, scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, printed matter and other papers relating chiefly to Hamlin's service in the United States Department of the Treasury and the Federal Reserve System, his civic affairs, and his family's social life in Washington, D.C. 

External links[edit]

Government offices
New office Chair of the Federal Reserve
Succeeded by
William Harding