NEELY, Matthew Mansfield (1874-1958)

NEELY, MATTHEW MANSFIELD, a Representative and a Senator from West Virginia; born near Groves, Doddridge County, W.Va., November 9, 1874; attended the public schools and Salem College at Salem, W.Va.; served as a private in the infantry during the Spanish-American War; graduated from the University of West Virginia at Morgantown in 1901 and from the law department of the same university in 1902; admitted to the bar in 1902 and commenced practice in Fairmont, Marion County; mayor of Fairmont 1908-1910; clerk of the State house of delegates 1911-1913; elected as a Democrat to the Sixty-third Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of John W. Davis; reelected to the Sixty-fourth, Sixty-fifth, and Sixty-sixth Congresses and served from October 14, 1913, to March 3, 1921; unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1920 to the Sixty-seventh Congress; elected in 1922 as a Democrat to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1923, to March 3, 1929; unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1928; elected to the United States Senate in 1930; reelected in 1936 and served from March 4, 1931, until his resignation on January 12, 1941, having been elected Governor; chairman, Committee on Rules (Seventy-fourth through Seventy-sixth Congresses), Committee on the Judiciary (Seventy-seventh Congress); Governor of West Virginia 1941-1945; elected as a Democrat to the Seventy-ninth Congress (January 3, 1945-January 3, 1947); unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1946 to the Eightieth Congress; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate in 1948; reelected in 1954 and served from January 3, 1949, until his death in the naval hospital, Bethesda, Md., January 18, 1958; chairman, Committee on the District of Columbia (Eighty-first, Eighty-second, Eighty-fourth and Eighty-fifth Congresses); interment in Woodlawn Cemetery, Fairmont, W.Va.

West Virginia Division of Culture and History
Charleston, WV
Papers: Gubernatorial papers and miscellaneous items.

West Virginia University
West Virginia and Regional History Collection
Morgantown, WV
Papers: 1900-1955. 16 feet. Includes drafts of speeches, correspondence, and 17 scrapbooks reproduced on 17 microfilm reels. Little on Senate career.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in West Virginia Governors' records, 1931-1964.

  • Neely, Matthew M. State Papers and Public Addresses. Charleston, WV: n.p., 1948.
  • U.S. Congress. Memorial Services Held in the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States: Together with Remarks Presented in Eulogy of Matthew Mansfield Neely, Late a Senator from West Virginia. 85th Cong., 2d sess., 1958. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1958.