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Charles Finley (politician)

Charles Finley (March 26, 1865 – March 18, 1941) was a United States Representative from Kentucky and son of Hugh Franklin Finley.[1]

Charles Finley
Charles Finley (Kentucky Congressman).jpg
Louisville Courier-Journal, March 10, 1900.
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 11th district
In office
February 15, 1930 – March 3, 1933
Preceded byJohn M. Robsion
Succeeded byDistrict eliminated
53rd and 55th Secretary of State of Kentucky
In office
January 1, 1896 – December 10, 1899
December 12, 1899 – December 29, 1899
GovernorWilliam O'Connell Bradley
Preceded byJohn W. Headley
John W. Headley
Succeeded byJohn W. Headley
Caleb Powers
Member of the Kentucky House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Born(1865-03-26)March 26, 1865
Williamsburg, Kentucky
DiedMarch 18, 1941(1941-03-18) (aged 75)
Williamsburg, Kentucky
Resting placeHighland Cemetery
Political partyRepublican
RelationsHugh Franklin Finley (father)
Alma materMilligan College
ProfessionCoal mine operator, banker, and publisher


Finley was born in Williamsburg, Kentucky, where he attended the common and subscription schools.[1] Later, he attended Milligan College. He engaged in business as a coal operator, banker, and publisher.[1]

Finley was a member of the Kentucky House of Representatives 1894-1896 and a delegate to the Republican state convention in 1895.[1] He served as Secretary of State of Kentucky from 1896 to 1900.[1]

On January 30, 1900, Democrat William Goebel was shot while the results of the previous year's election for Governor of Kentucky was still being contested; Goebel was declared the winner, and died shortly afterwards.[2] Finley was one of several Republicans suspected of involvement; they were indicted, and arrest warrants were issued.[2] Along with several others, Finley fled to Indiana to escape prosecution.[2] The Republican governor there refused to honor extradition requests, and they continued to reside in Indiana while the case was litigated.[2] In 1909, Kentucky Governor Augustus E. Willson extended clemency to Finley and other suspects; they never faced trial, and then returned to Kentucky.[2]

Finley was chairman of the Republican executive committee of the Eleventh Kentucky Congressional District from 1912 to 1928.[1] He was elected as a Republican to the Seventy-first Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of John M. Robsion and was reelected to the Seventy-second Congress and served from February 15, 1930 to March 3, 1933.[1] He was not a candidate for renomination in 1932.[1]

After leaving Congress, he retired from business activities before dying in Williamsburg, Kentucky in 1941.[3] He was buried in Highland Cemetery, Williamsburg, Kentucky.[1]




  • United States Congress. "Charles Finley (id: F000130)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)


U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
John M. Robsion
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 11th congressional district

1930 – 1933 (obsolete district)
Succeeded by
District eliminated