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Indiana Historical Bureau

IHB > About Indiana - History and Trivia > Governors' Portraits > List of Governors > Indiana Governor James Frank Hanly (1863 - 1920) Indiana Governor James Frank Hanly (1863 - 1920)

James Frank Hanly
Governor of Indiana
January 9, 1905-January 11, 1909

James Frank Hanly

Artist: Wayman Adams, American, 1883-1959, painted 1913
oil on canvas, 38 x 32 (96.5 x 81.3)
Signed and dated l.l.: Wayman Adams/1913

FRANK HANLY was born in Illinois in a log cabin, an accident of fortune from which he derived considerable political benefit in the course of his career. He was educated in Illinois common schools and at Eastern Illinois Normal School, Danville. Moving to Warren County, Indiana, in 1879, he taught school and worked as a common laborer until he was admitted to the bar in 1889. The next year he was elected to the state senate, and in 1894 he won a congressional seat. He moved to Lafayette in 1896, after failing to win renomination, and practiced law. After an unsuccessful try for the Republican nomination for United States senator in 1898, he was elected governor in 1904.

As governor, Hanly crusaded against liquor, horseracing, and political corruption, even going so far as to prosecute members of his own administration for embezzlement. An electrifying speaker, Hanly went on after his term as governor to organize a group of prohibition lecturers-more like revivalists than lecturers-called the Flying Squadron, and in 1916 he joined the Prohibition party and was its candidate for President of the United States. He died in an automobile accident in 1920.

Source: Peat, Wilbur D. Portraits and Painters of the Governors of Indiana 1800-1978. Revised, edited and with new entries by Diane Gail Lazarus, Indianapolis Museum of Art. Biographies of the governors by Lana Ruegamer, Indiana Historical Society. Indianapolis: Indiana Historical Society and Indianapolis Museum of Art, 1978.