Russell McWhortor Cunningham

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Russell McWhortor Cunningham
Russell McWhortor Cunningham ca 1904.png
Acting Governor of Alabama
In office
April 25, 1904 – March 5, 1905
Lieutenant None
Acting Governor for William Jelks
Preceded by William Jelks
Succeeded by William Jelks
5th Lieutenant Governor of Alabama
In office
Governor William Jelks
Preceded by Robert F. Ligon (1876)
Succeeded by Henry B. Gray
Member of the Alabama Senate
In office
Member of the Alabama House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Born August 25, 1855
Mount Hope, Lawrence County, Alabama
Died June 6, 1921 (aged 65)
Birmingham, Alabama
Political party Democratic
Profession Surgeon, Physician

Russell McWhortor Cunningham (August 25, 1855 – June 6, 1921) was an American Democratic politician who was the acting Governor of Alabama from April 25, 1904 to March 5, 1905. He was lieutenant governor when Governor William D. Jelks fell ill and left the state for treatment, and since the Alabama Constitution requires that if the governor leave the state for more than 20 days, the lieutenant governor must act as governor until their return.

Although he was de jure only an interim chief of the state administration, because he served as Acting Governor for nearly a year, he is regarded as one of the Alabama Governor by the state government, and his portrait hanging along other Governor's portrait, as well as he figured on official state site alongside them. Cunningham is buried in Elmwood Cemetery.

Cunningham served in the Alabama House of Representatives 1880-1881. In 1896-1900, he served in the Alabama State Senate and was president of the senate. He also served in the Alabama Constitutional Convention of 1901.[1]


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Political offices
Preceded by
Robert F. Ligon
Lieutenant Governor of Alabama
Acting Governor 1904–1905
Succeeded by
Henry B. Gray