NEWBERRY, Truman Handy (1864-1945)

NEWBERRY, TRUMAN HANDY, (son of John Stoughton Newberry), a Senator from Michigan; born in Detroit, Mich., November 5, 1864; attended public and private schools; graduated from Yale College in 1885; superintendent of construction, paymaster, general freight and passenger agent, and eventually manager of the Detroit, Bay City & Alpena Railway 1885-1887; president and treasurer of the Detroit Steel & Spring Co. 1887-1901; engaged in various other manufacturing activities; organizer of the Michigan State Naval Brigade; served in the Navy during the Spanish-American War; Assistant Secretary of the Navy 1905-1908; Secretary of the Navy in the Cabinet of President Theodore Roosevelt 1908-1909; lieutenant commander United States Navy Fleet Reserve in 1917 and assistant to the commandant third naval district of New York until 1919; elected as a Republican to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1919, until his resignation on November 18, 1922; in 1921, Newberry was tried and convicted of election "irregularities"; the conviction was reversed by the Supreme Court, and, following an investigation, the Senate declared Newberry entitled to his seat but expressed disapproval of the sum spent on his election; in the face of a new movement to unseat him, Newberry resigned; engaged in manufacturing; died in Grosse Pointe, Mich., October 3, 1945; interment in Elmwood Cemetery, Detroit, Mich.

Detroit Public Library
Detroit, MI
Papers: 1879-1936. 212 feet; ca. 130,000 items. Political, personal, and business correspondence including some papers of the Detroit Steel and Spring Company, Peoples State Bank, Packard Motor Car Company, and Cleveland Cliffs Iron Company; autobiography, diary (1879), World War I scrapbook, and correspondence and diaries of his wife. Finding aid.

Michigan State University
University Archives and Historical Collections
East Lansing, MI
Papers: 1 foot of documents (1895-1938) in the Kathleen Lawler papers. Correspondence, reports, and memoranda between Newberry and Lawler, who served as special clerk to the Senate Committee on Privileges and Elections, regarding the disputed 1918 election of Newberry over Henry Ford. Finding aid.

University of Michigan
Bentley Historical Library
Ann Arbor, MI
Papers: Correspondence in James Orin Murfin papers, 1896-1940; Arthur Hendrick Vandenberg papers, 1884-1974; Chase Salmon Osborn papers, 1889-1949; Jesse Siddall Reeves papers, 1853-1942; Clarence William Sessions scrapbooks 1919-1920; Earl C. Michener papers, 1898-1934 and 1940-1954; William Butts Mershon papers, 1848-1943; Jay G. Hayden scrapbooks, 1916-1965; Ernest James McCall papers, 1897-1900 and 1918-1950; Harry Burns Hutchins papers, 1879-1930; Henry Bourne Joy papers, 1883-1937; Detroit News Isle Royale papers, 1885-1955 (bulk 1921-1946); James W. Helme papers, 1844-1938; Roy Dikeman Chapin papers, 1886-1937; Marshall L. Cook papers, 1880-1945; Edwin Denby papers, 1845-1846 and 1880-1929; Mortimer E. Cooley papers, 1873-1944; and Marion LeRoy Burton papers, 1901-1925. Finding aid.

  • Baker, Paula. Curbing Campaign Cash: Henry Ford, Truman Newberry, and the Politics of Progressive Reform. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2012.
  • Ervin, Spencer. Henry Ford vs. Truman H. Newberry: The Famous Senate Election Contest. 1935. Reprint. New York: Arno Press, 1974.