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Pennsylvania State Senate
https://www.legis.state.pa.us/cfdocs/legis/bioshistory/MemBio.cfm?ID=2567&body=S

Cyrus E. Woods


Photo credit:

Portrait: Senate of Pennsylvania

 

Sessions

Session Office Position District Party
1901-1902 39 Republican
1903-1904 39 Republican
1905-1906 President Pro Tempore 39 Republican
1907-1908 39 Republican
 Counties   Westmoreland

Biography

09/03/1861 - 12/08/1938

Cyrus E. Woods (R39) Westmoreland County 1901-1908

Early Life:

Cyrus E. Woods, born September 3, 1861, Clearfield, Clearfield County, Pennsylvania; son of Doctor Matthew Woods and Katharine Bella Speece; Lafayette College; University of Pennsylvania Law School, Phi Beta Kappa 1889; attorney, law practice law, Philadelphia, 1889-1894, then Pittsburgh; married Mary Todd Marchand, 1893; elected, Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1901-1908; president pro tempore, 1905-1906; diplomatic appointment, presidential, United States' Envoy,  Portugal, 1912-1913; governor appointment, Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 1915-1921; diplomatic appointment, presidential,  United States Ambassador, Spain, 1921-1923; diplomatic appointment, presidential,  United States Ambassador, Japan, 1923-1924; governor appointment, Pennsylvania Attorney General, 1929-1930;  died, December 8, 1938 (age 77 years, 96 days) uremic poisoning (kidney failure), Jefferson Hospital, Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, Interment, Saint Clair Cemetery, Greensburg, Pennsylvania.

Early Career:

Relocated, Greensburg, 1912, corporation lawyer, established, successful partnership, Gaither and Woods, Westmoreland County; general counsel, Pittsburgh Coal Company; solicitor, Pennsylvania Railroad; became, Mellon family business attorney, specializing in protecting the family’s vast financial interests.

Professional titles; business ownership; board memberships; local government; club memberships:

48-year member, Pennsylvania Bar Association, organization’s vice president; member, Delta Kappa Epsilon; member, Union League of Philadelphia, Clover Club of Philadelphia, Duquesne Club of Pittsburgh, Harrisburg Country Club.

Pennsylvania Politics:

Elected, Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate 39th district, Westmoreland County, 1901-1908; chair, Judiciary General; member, Appropriations, Corporations, Exposition Affairs, Finance and Railroads elected, president pro tempore at the close of the 1905 session, presided during the 1906 extra session; ex-officio all committees, 1907-1908.

Appointed, Governor Martin Grove Brumbaugh, Governor William Cameron Sproul, Secretary, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 1915-1921; opened, Pennsylvania Constitutional Commission.

Nominated, Interstate Commerce Commission; Governor John Fisher persuaded him to accept the state’s attorney general post.

Appointed, Governor John Fisher, Pennsylvania Attorney General, 1929-1930, resigned, to take care of his ailing wife.

Continued Government Service/National Politics:

Diplomatic appointment, President William Howard Taft, United States' Envoy to Portugal, 1912-1913; with the official title of Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary, United States had not yet elevated the post to ambassador status.

Diplomatic appointment, President Warren Gamaliel Harding, United States Ambassador, Spain, 1921-1923

Diplomatic appointment, President Warren Gamaliel Harding, President John Calvin Coolidge, United States Ambassador, Japan, 1923-1924, instrumental in organizing American relief effort in response to the devastating 1923 Great Kantō earthquake.

Legacy:

Wife, Mary Todd Marchand, a great-granddaughter, James Todd, former state Attorney General.

Cited: 

Cochran, T.B., (Ed.) Miller, H.P. (A. Ed.) (1908) Smull’s Legislative Hand Book, Biographical Sketches of Senators, page 890, 909, 915-917.