Key Pittman

Key Pittman ( born September 19, 1872 in Vicksburg, Mississippi, † November 10, 1940 in Reno, Nevada ) was an American politician.


Early life

Key Pittman grew up in privileged circumstances on, who was educated by private tutors, among others, and later the Southwestern Presbyterian University in Clarksville (Tennessee ) completed. After studying law, he took the early 1890s to Seattle ( Washington) where he practiced law.


How many adventurous men it took Pittman 1897 the Klondike River, as there at the end of the 19th century broke out the famous gold rush. He even earned a gold mine, which he headed until 1901. 1902 Pittman left the region and settled in the economically thriving city Tonopah (Nevada ), where he began his work as a lawyer again. Also took Pittman 1904-1906 as a representative of Nevada at the Lewis and Clark Centennial Exposition in Portland in part.

Political career

1911 was a candidate of the party members of the Democrats for the first time for the office of U.S. Senator, but lost his immediate predecessor, William Massey. Two years later, he had more success, and drew on 29 January 1913 as a U.S. Senator from Nevada to Washington.

He was re-elected four times and belonged to the Senate until his death 27 years. He was one of the longest reigning U.S. senators.

During his tenure, he took over several functions, including from 1933 to 1940 those of the president pro tempore. During the same period he was Chairman of the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

Death and controversy

In 1940 he ran again for the office Senator, but he died during the election campaign in Washoe General Hospital of a heart attack.

For a long time it was assumed that Pittman's body was frozen by party colleagues in a bathtub, until his election had been confirmed to only then to announce his death. Thus, the Democratic Party would have had a Senate seat in the 77th Congress more. However, this rumor was never confirmed.


Vail Montgomery Pittman followed his older brother by eight years in politics and was from 1945 to 1951 governor of Nevada.