George Cromwell Scott (August 8, 1864 - October 6, 1948) was a Republican U.S. Representative from Iowa's 11th congressional district for just over four years, and was a federal district court judge for over twenty-one years.
Born near East Kendall (now Morton), Monroe County, New York, Scott's mother died when he was two years old, and his father died when he was five. After being raised by his uncle, Scott moved to Iowa in 1880, when he was sixteen, to live with other relatives. He attended the country schools and the high school at Dallas Center, Iowa. He taught school while studying the equivalent of a full college courseload under the tutilege of his wife, Laura. After studying law while working for a law firm in Adel, Iowa, he was admitted to the bar in 1887 and commenced practice in Le Mars, Iowa, in 1888. He moved to Sioux City, Iowa in 1901 and continued the practice of law.
In January 1912, Scott announced his candidacy for the U.S. House seat in Iowa's 11th congressional district, which was then held by fellow Republican Elbert H. Hubbard. Hubbard defeated Scott in the June 3 primary, but died the following day. A nominating convention in July 1912 gave Scott the nomination over state senator L.E. Francis. Upon defeating Democratic and Bull Moose Party challengers in the general election, Scott was immediately sworn to fill the remainder of Hubbard's term in the Sixty-second Congress. Scott then served another full term in the Sixty-third Congress.
In 1914 Scott was renominated by the Republicans for a second full term, but was upset in the general election by Democrat Thomas J. Steele. Explained one rural newspaper, "the central feature of the Steele campaign was personal solicitation of votes and personal publicity concerning the candidate." By contrast, "Mr. Scott remained in Washington until ten days before the election and put in only one week of campaigning." However, Scott ran again two years later, and recaptured his seat from Steele. He was not a candidate for renomination in 1918. In all, Scott served in Congress from November 5, 1912, to March 3, 1915, and from March 4, 1917 to March 3, 1919.
Scott resumed the practice of law in Sioux City. He was appointed by President Warren G. Harding as judge of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Iowa, and served from March 4, 1922 until his retirement on November 1, 1943.
Scott died in Sioux City, Iowa on October 6, 1948. He was interred in Graceland Park Cemetery in Sioux City.
- "Hon. Geo. C. Scott," The Hull Index, 1912-08-02 at p. 1.
- "Wants Hubbard's Place," Cedar Rapids Evening Gazette, 1912-01-19, at p. 5.
- "Death Claims Congressman," Waterloo Evening Courier, 1912-06-05 at p.1.
- "Eleventh Iowa Elects a Demo," Waterloo Evening Courier, 1914-11-04 at p. 1.
- "Steel [sic] Victory Most Certain," Hospers Tribune, 1914-11-06 at p. 2.
- "How Eleventh Was Lost," The Cedar Rapids Republican, 1914-11-08 at p. 20 (quoting the Sioux City Journal).
- George Cromwell Scott at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
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