Richard S. Whaley

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Richard Smith Whaley
Chief Justice of the United States Court of Claims
In office
June 28, 1939 – July 9, 1947
Appointed by Franklin D. Roosevelt
Preceded by Fenton Whitlock Booth
Succeeded by John Marvin Jones
Judge of the United States Court of Claims
In office
June 3, 1930 – June 27, 1939
Appointed by Herbert Hoover
Preceded by Nicholas J. Sinnott
Succeeded by Samuel Estill Whitaker
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 1st district
In office
April 29, 1913 – March 3, 1921
Preceded by George Swinton Legaré
Succeeded by W. Turner Logan
37th Speaker of the South Carolina House of Representatives
In office
January 8, 1907– February 19, 1910
Governor Duncan Clinch Heyward
Martin Frederick Ansel
Preceded by Mendel Lafayette Smith
Succeeded by Mendel Lafayette Smith
Member of the South Carolina House of Representatives from Charleston County
In office
February 14, 1913 – April 29, 1913
In office
January 8, 1901– February 19, 1910
Personal details
Born (1874-07-15)July 15, 1874
Charleston, South Carolina
Died November 8, 1951(1951-11-08) (aged 77)
Charleston, South Carolina
Resting place Charleston, South Carolina
Political party Democratic
Alma mater University of Virginia
Profession lawyer, judge

Richard Smith Whaley (July 15, 1874 – November 8, 1951) was a U.S. Representative from South Carolina, and chief justice of the United States Court of Claims.

Born in Charleston, South Carolina, Whaley attended the Episcopal High School, in Alexandria, Virginia, and was graduated from the law department of the University of Virginia, where he was a member of St. Anthony Hall, in 1897. In 1896, Whaley served as the first head coach of the University of South Carolina football team.[1] During his one season with the Gamecocks, he compiled an overall record of one win and three losses (1–3).[2]

He was admitted to the bar in 1897 and commenced practice in Charleston, South Carolina. He served as member of the State house of representatives 1901-1910, 1913. He served as speaker from 1907 to 1910 and as speaker pro tempore in 1913. He was presiding officer of the Democratic State convention in 1910 and of the Democratic city convention in 1911. He served as delegate to the Democratic National Conventions in 1912 and 1920.

Whaley was elected as a Democrat to the Sixty-third United States Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of George Swinton Legaré. He was re-elected to the Sixty-fourth, Sixty-fifth, and Sixty-sixth Congresses and served from April 29, 1913, to March 3, 1921. He was not a candidate for renomination in 1920, and resumed the practice of law. He was appointed commissioner of the United States Court of Claims in 1925, appointed judge by President Herbert Hoover in 1930, and was designated chief justice in 1939. He retired as chief justice in 1947. He died in Charleston, South Carolina, November 8, 1951. He was interred in Magnolia Cemetery.


  1. ^ "Richard Smith Whaley: Memory Hold The Door". University of South Carolina School of Law. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  2. ^ DeLassus, David. "W.H. "Dixie" Whaley Records by Year". College Football Data Warehouse. Retrieved August 7, 2012.
  • The United States Court of Claims : a history / pt. 1. The judges, 1855-1976 / by Marion T. Bennett / pt. 2. Origin, development, jurisdiction, 1855-1978 / W. Cowen, P. Nichols, M.T. Bennett. Washington, D.C.: Committee on the Bicentennial of Independence and the Constitution of the Judicial Conference of the United States. 1976.
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
George Swinton Legaré
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
W. Turner Logan
Legal offices
Preceded by
Nicholas J. Sinnott
Judge of the United States Court of Claims
Succeeded by
Samuel Estill Whitaker
Preceded by
Fenton Whitlock Booth
Chief Justice of the United States Court of Claims
Succeeded by
John Marvin Jones
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