William Alexander Harris (Kansas)

William Alexander Harris ( * October 29, 1841 in Luray, Page County, Virginia; † December 20, 1909 in Chicago ) was an American politician of the Populist Party, who represented the state of Kansas in both chambers of the U.S. Congress.


At the time of Harris ' birth, his father, who also bore the name of William Alexander Harris, as MP for Virginia was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives in Washington. In this city, then the young William made ​​1859 also graduated from Columbian College, which later became George Washington University; Two years later he completed his education at the Virginia Military Institute in Lexington

After the outbreak of the Civil War Harris joined the Confederate Army. He served there for three years, initially with the rank of Adjutant General, later. Than ordnance officer in the Army of Northern Virginia After the war he settled in 1865 in Kansas, where he worked as a civil engineer for the Union Pacific Railroad until 1868. In that year he moved to Lawrence, and served there as representatives of several railroad companies, who wanted to acquire the land of the Delaware Indians. From 1884 he lived in Linwood, where he worked in agriculture and animal husbandry.


William Harris was a member of the short-lived Populist Party, which had particularly among farmers in the Great Plains and great support then later mostly rose in the Democratic Party. He was sitting on 4 March 1893 to 3 March 1895 the House of Representatives in Washington. After he had tried in vain to re-election, he spent the next two years in the Senate of Kansas, before returning as a U.S. Senator in the Congress on March 4, 1897.

This time his re-election attempt was unsuccessful, so he had to retire from the Senate on March 3, 1903. 1906 Harris lost the election for governor of Kansas, after which he retired from politics. He took a job with the National Livestock Association in Chicago, where he died 1909.