Green, Theodore Francis, 1867-1966

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1867-10-02
Death 1966-05-19
English

Biographical notes:

Brown University class of 1887. At different times lawyer with Green, Hinckley and Allen; and with Green, Curran, and Hart. Instructor in law at Brown University. Governor of Rhode Island.

From the description of Papers, [ca. 1907-1938]. (Brown University). WorldCat record id: 122365837

U.S. senator and governor of Rhode Island and lawyer.

From the description of Theodore Francis Green papers, 1924-1960 (bulk 1937-1960). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 75382875

Biographical Note

  • 1867, Oct. 2: Born, Providence, R.I.
  • 1894 - 1897 : Instructor in law, Brown University, Providence, R.I.
  • 1906: Became senior member of law firm of Green, Hinckley, and Allen, Providence, R.I.
  • 1907 - 1908 : Member, Rhode Island House of Representatives
  • 1912: Democratic candidate for governor of Rhode Island
  • 1912 - 1960 : Delegate to Democratic national convention
  • 1914: Chairman, Democratic state convention, Rhode Island
  • 1920: Democratic candidate for U.S. House of Representatives
  • 1924: Chairman, Democratic state convention, Rhode Island
  • 1924 - 1937 : Member, Council of Legal Education of American Bar Association
  • 1926: Chairman, Democratic state convention, Rhode Island
  • 1928: Democratic candidate for governor of Rhode Island
  • 1929 - 1930 : Chairman, Democratic State Central Committee, Rhode Island
  • 1930: Democratic candidate for governor of Rhode Island
  • 1933 - 1937 : Governor of Rhode Island
  • 1936 - 1960 : National committeeman, Democratic Party
  • 1937 - 1960 : U.S. senator
  • 1949 - 1960 : Member, Senate Committee on Foreign Relations (chairman, 1957-1959)
  • 1957 - 1958 : Chairman, Joint Congressional Delegation to the Third NATO Parliamentary Conference, Paris, France
  • 1966, May 19: Died, Providence, R.I.

From the guide to the Theodore Francis Green Papers, 1924-1960, (bulk 1937-1960), (Manuscript Division Library of Congress)

Born October 2, 1867 in Providence, RI, U. S. Senator Theodore Francis Green received his A.B. (1887) and A.M. (1888) from Brown University. He studied law, 1888-1892, at Harvard Law School and the Universities of Berlin and Bonn, Germany. Returning to Providence, he practiced law after admittance to the Rhode Island Bar in 1892 and taught Roman Law at Brown, 1894-1898. He received a commission as a lieutenant during the Spanish-American War.

Green served RISD as a Trustee and Honorary Trustee from 1900 till his death in 1966. In addition, he served as Vice-President (1907-1939), Acting President (1913, 1931), a member of the Executive Committee (1900-1936), and Chair of the Endowment Committees of 1902 and 1910. He served as a trustee of Brown University, Butler Hospital for the Insane, and Providence Public Library as well as Chair of the Providence City Plan Commission, 1917-1919.

Green began his political career in 1906 winning election to the State House (Providence; 11th District) as a member of the reform Lincoln Party, serving a one-year term. Created by wealthy Rhode Island families such as the Metcalfs, Goddards, and Sharpes, the Lincoln party aligned with the Democratic Party against the corrupt Republican Party machine. Moving to the Democratic Party, Green remained active in politics running unsuccessfully for Governor (1912; 1930) and Congress, 1st District (1918). Renominated for Governor in 1932, Green won the election and then reelection in 1934. The 1935 New Years Day "Green Revolution" broke the Republican Party's control of state government. In 1936, he defeated fellow RISD Trustee Jesse H. Metcalf for a seat in the U. S. Senate. He served until 1961.

From the guide to the Theodore Francis Green papers, Green (Theodore Francis) papers, 1901-1910, (bulk 1902), (Rhode Island School of Design Archives)

Theodore Francis Green (1867-1966), was born in Providence on October 2, 1867, the son of Arnold Green (1858). He entered Brown at fifteen and graduated in 1887. After that he studied at Harvard Law School and the Universities of Berlin and Bonn. He joined his father's law firm, and after 1906 headed the law firm of Green, Hinckley and Allen until 1923, and after that the firm of Green, Curran and Hart. He was an instructor in Roman law at Brown from 1894 to 1897. In 1932, at the age of 65, instead of retiring, Green was elected Governor of Rhode Island on the Democratic ticket. His political career up to that point had not been promising. In 1907 he had been elected to the Rhode Island House of Representatives, but his bids for higher office were unsuccessful. He was defeated for election as Governor in 1912, as Congressman in 1918, and as Governor again in 1930. He finally came into office along with Franklin D. Roosevelt's Democratic sweep in 1932. After that it was easy. He was elected to the United States Senate in 1936 and remained there until 1961. He served on the Foreign Relations Committee from 1937 to 1947 and from 1949 to 1959, and in 1957, at age 89, was appointed chairman of the committee. He voluntarily resigned the chairmanship in 1959.

Green was a dedicated alumnus of the University. He was on the building committee for Rockefeller Hall and was chairman of the Brown Union from 1903 to 1907. He introduced the bear as the mascot of the University and composed the verse of the Class of 1887 Gate. He served 66 years on the Corporation, as a trustee from 1900 to 1929 and as a fellow from that time until his death on May 19, 1966 in Providence.

From the guide to the Theodore Francis Green speeches and personal papers, Green (Theodore Francis) speeches and personal papers, 1883-1960, (John Hay Library Special Collections)

Theodore Francis Green (1867-1966), was born in Providence on October 2, 1867, the son of Arnold Green (1858). He entered Brown at fifteen and graduated in 1887. After that he studied at Harvard Law School and the Universities of Berlin and Bonn. He joined his father’s law firm, and after 1906 headed the law firm of Green, Hinckley and Allen until 1923, and after that the firm of Green, Curran and Hart. He was an instructor in Roman law at Brown from 1894 to 1897. In 1932, at the age of 65, instead of retiring, Green was elected Governor of Rhode Island on the Democratic ticket. His political career up to that point had not been promising. In 1907 he had been elected to the Rhode Island House of Representatives, but his bids for higher office were unsuccessful. He was defeated for election as Governor in 1912, as Congressman in 1918, and as Governor again in 1930. He finally came into office along with Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Democratic sweep in 1932. After that it was easy. He was elected to the United States Senate in 1936 and remained there until 1961. He served on the Foreign Relations Committee from 1937 to 1947 and from 1949 to 1959, and in 1957 at age 89 achieved his fondest wish of becoming chairman of the committee. He voluntarily resigned the chairmanship in 1959. The very last years of his life he suffered two falls and a critical illness, during which he was accustomed to following the local news bulletins on his condition on television, which he explained was “the only way I can find out how I feel.” He had been very frail as a child as a result of early illness, but compensated for this by being very athletic, especially in tennis and swimming, into his 80s.

Green’s loyalty to Brown was legendary. He had lived nearby and attended Brown Commencements from his early childhood until his old age, being absent only while he was a student in Germany. In 1957, after he had worn his academic gown for more than fifty years, he was presented with a new one. He was on the building committee for Rockefeller Hall and was chairman of the Brown Union from 1903 to 1907. He introduced the bear as the mascot of the University and composed the verse of the Class of 1887 Gate. He served 66 years on the Corporation, as a trustee from 1900 to 1929 and as a fellow from that time until his death on May 19, 1966 in Providence.

(The above entry appears in Encyclopedia Brunoniana by Martha Mitchell, copyright ©1993 by the Brown University Library. It is used here by permission of the author and the University and may not be copied or further distributed without permission.)

From the guide to the Theodore Francis Green papers, Green (Theodore Francis) papers, (bulk 1900-1961), 1821-1961, (John Hay Library Special Collections)

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Subjects:

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Occupations:

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  • Senators, U.S. Congress--Rhode Island
  • Governors--Rhode Island

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