Open main menu

James Kee (April 15, 1917 – March 11, 1989) was a U.S. Democratic politician and a member of the United States House of Representatives from West Virginia

James Kee
James Kee 89th Congress 1965.jpg
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from West Virginia's 5th district
In office
January 3, 1965 – January 3, 1973
Preceded byElizabeth Kee
Succeeded byDistrict eliminated
Personal details
Born(1917-04-15)April 15, 1917
Bluefield, West Virginia
DiedMarch 11, 1989(1989-03-11) (aged 71)
Montgomery, West Virginia
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Helen Lee Chapman
Alma materGeorgetown University

Life and careerEdit

Kee was born in Bluefield, West Virginia. He was the son of John Kee, who represented the Bluefield-based 5th District from 1933 until his death in 1951, and Elizabeth Kee, who succeeded her husband in Congress and served from 1951 until 1965. James Kee served as his mother's administrative assistant from 1953 to 1965. When his mother decided not to run for re-election in 1964, he ran for his mother's old seat and won, serving in the 89th through the 92nd U.S. Congress from January 3, 1965 to January 3, 1973.

After West Virginia lost a seat in the House of Representatives as a result of the 1970 U.S. Census, Kee's 5th District was merged with the Huntington-based 4th District, represented by fellow Democrat Ken Hechler. The state legislature intended to force Hechler, a firm opponent of the Democratic Party machine, out of office; indeed, the new district contained 65% of Kee's former territory even though it retained Hechler's district number. However, Hechler made the most of his strong union ties and routed Kee in the primary.

Kee was a resident of Fayetteville, West Virginia until his death in Montgomery, West Virginia on March 11, 1989 at the age of 71.

See alsoEdit


  • United States Congress. "James Kee (id: K000038)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  • James Kee at The Political Graveyard
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Elizabeth Kee
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from West Virginia's 5th congressional district

District eliminated