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Robert Lee Henry (May 12, 1864 – July 9, 1931) was a Democratic member of the United States House of Representatives from Texas from 1897 to 1917 (7th district: 1897–1903; 11th district: 1903–1917).

Robert Lee Henry
HENRY, ROBERT L. HONORABLE LCCN2016857398 (cropped).jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 11th district
In office
March 4, 1903 – March 3, 1917
Preceded byRudolph Kleberg
Succeeded byTom Connally
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 7th district
In office
March 4, 1897 – March 3, 1903
Preceded byGeorge C. Pendleton
Succeeded byAlexander W. Gregg
Personal details
Born(1864-05-12)May 12, 1864
Linden, Texas
DiedJuly 9, 1931(1931-07-09) (aged 67)
Houston, Texas
Political partyDemocratic

Early lifeEdit

Robert Lee Henry was the great-great-great grandson of Patrick Henry and was born in Linden, Texas on May 12, 1864. While a child, he attended public schools and moved to Bowie County in 1878 and to McLennan County in 1895. He was graduated from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas in 1885. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1886 and practiced for a short time in Texarkana, Texas. He was graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 1887.

Political careerEdit

Henry was elected mayor of Texarkana in 1890 but resigned in 1891. He was then appointed First Assistant to the Attorney General of Texas 1891-1893 and Assistant Attorney General (1893–1896). He settled in Waco, Texas in 1895 and practiced law. He was elected as a Democrat to Congress from 1897-1917. From 1905-1907, Rep. Henry was Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus. He was also Chairman of the House Committee on Rules (1912–1917). A strong supporter of Woodrow Wilson in 1912, Henry was considered a progressive Democrat. He was not a candidate for renomination in 1916, but was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for United States Senator. He engaged in the practice of law in Waco, and again was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for United States Senator in 1922 and 1928. He moved to Houston, Texas in 1923 and resumed the practice of his profession. Robert L. Henry died in Houston, on July 9, 1931, from a self-inflicted gunshot to his head in an apparent suicide.[1] He was buried in Rose Hill Cemetery, Texarkana, Texas.


  1. ^ "Suicide Ends Career of R.L. Henry in Texas. Ex-Member of Congress, Long a Political Figure, Was Ill and Had Met Reverses". New York Times. July 10, 1931. Retrieved 2008-12-07. Worried over recent financial reverses and suffering from ill health, Robert Lee Henry, 67 years old, a member of Congress from Texas for twenty years, ended his life with a pistol shot at his residence here early this morning.

External linksEdit

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
George C. Pendleton
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 7th congressional district

Succeeded by
Alexander W. Gregg
Preceded by
Rudolph Kleberg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 11th congressional district

Succeeded by
Tom Connally
Political offices
Preceded by
Joseph Gurney Cannon
Chairman of House Rules Committee
Succeeded by
Edward W. Pou
North Carolina