Charles I. Dawson

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Charles I. Dawson
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky
In office
January 13, 1925 – June 30, 1935
Appointed byCalvin Coolidge
Preceded byCharles Harwood Moorman
Succeeded byElwood Hamilton
Attorney General of Kentucky
In office
GovernorEdwin P. Morrow
Preceded byCharles H. Morris
Succeeded byThomas Burnett McGregor
Member of the Kentucky House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Charles I. Dawson

(1881-02-13)February 13, 1881
Logan County, Kentucky
DiedApril 24, 1969(1969-04-24) (aged 88)
Resting placeCave Hill Cemetery
Louisville, Kentucky
Political partyDemocratic (until 1909)
Republican (from 1909)
EducationUniversity of Kentucky
read law

Charles I. Dawson (February 13, 1881 – April 24, 1969) was a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky.

Education and career[edit]

Born on February 13, 1881, in Logan County, Kentucky, Dawson attended the University of Kentucky and read law in 1905. He entered private practice in Russellville, Kentucky from 1905 to 1906. He continued in private practice in Pineville, Kentucky starting in 1906. He was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1906. He was the county attorney of Bell County, Kentucky from 1910 to 1920. He was the Attorney General of Kentucky from 1920 to 1924.[1] Dawson was a member of the Democratic Party until 1909, and a member of the Republican Party from 1909.[2]

Federal judicial service[edit]

Dawson was nominated by President Calvin Coolidge on January 2, 1925, to a seat on the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky vacated by Judge Charles H. Moorman. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on January 13, 1925, and received his commission the same day. His service terminated on June 30, 1935, due to his resignation.[1]

Later career and death[edit]

Dawson resumed private practice in Louisville, Kentucky from 1935 to 1969. He died on April 24, 1969.[1] He was interred in Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville.[2]

Unsuccessful political campaigns[edit]

In 1923 Dawson, still serving as attorney general, was the Republican nominee for Governor of Kentucky. The Democratic nominee, J. Campbell Cantrill, suddenly died that September, after defeating Alben Barkley for the nomination. Democrat William J. Fields quickly replaced Cantrill on the ticket after Barkley declined the nomination. Dawson lost the general election to Fields, winning 306,277 votes (46.2%) to Fields' 356.035 (53.8%).[2]

In 1950 Dawson was the Republican nominee for a seat in the United States Senate. Dawson lost that race to Democrat Earle C. Clements, who won 300,276 votes (53.9%) to Dawson's 256,876 (46.1%). Clements went on to become the assistant majority floor leader under Lyndon B. Johnson, serving as Majority Leader of the United States Senate during Johnson's extended absence due to medical reasons.[2]


  1. ^ a b c Charles I. Dawson at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
  2. ^ a b c d Kleber, John E.; Kentucky, University Press of; Policy, Institute for Regional Analysis and Public; Library, Camden-Carroll; University, Morehead State (19 February 2019). "The Kentucky Encyclopedia".


External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Edwin P. Morrow
Republican nominee for Governor of Kentucky
Succeeded by
Flem D. Sampson
Preceded by
James Park
Republican nominee for United States Senator from Kentucky (Class 3)
1950 (special), 1950
Succeeded by
Thruston Ballard Morton
Legal offices
Preceded by
Charles H. Morris
Attorney General of Kentucky
Succeeded by
T. B. McGregor
Preceded by
Charles Harwood Moorman
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Kentucky
Succeeded by
Elwood Hamilton