Open main menu

William Robert Smith (August 18, 1863 – August 16, 1924) was a United States Representative from Texas and a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas.

William Robert Smith
Hon. Wm. R. Smith of Texas LCCN2016820744 (cropped).jpg
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
In office
April 12, 1917 – August 16, 1924
Appointed byWoodrow Wilson
Preceded bySeat established by 39 Stat. 938
Succeeded byCharles Albert Boynton
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 16th district
In office
March 4, 1903 – March 3, 1917
Preceded byDistrict established
Succeeded byThomas L. Blanton
Personal details
William Robert Smith

(1863-08-18)August 18, 1863
Smith County, Texas
DiedAugust 16, 1924(1924-08-16) (aged 60)
El Paso, Texas
Resting placeEvergreen Cemetery
El Paso, Texas
Political partyDemocratic
EducationSam Houston Normal Institute
read law

Education and careerEdit

Born on August 18, 1863, near Tyler in Smith County, Texas,[1] Smith attended the country schools, then graduated from Sam Houston Normal Institute (now Sam Houston State University) in 1883 and read law in 1885.[1] He was admitted to the bar and entered private practice in Tyler from 1885 to 1888, then moved in February 1888 to Colorado City, Mitchell County, Texas and continued private practice from 1888 to 1897.[1] He was a Judge of the Texas District Court for the Thirty-Second Judicial District from 1897 to 1903.[1]

Congressional serviceEdit

Smith was elected as a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives of the 58th United States Congress and to the six succeeding Congresses, serving from March 4, 1903, to March 3, 1917.[2] He was Chairman of the Committee on Irrigation of Arid Lands in the 62nd through 64th United States Congresses.[2] He was an unsuccessful candidate for renomination in 1916.[2] He moved to El Paso, Texas in October 1916 and returned to the private practice of law.[2]

Federal judicial serviceEdit

Smith was nominated by President Woodrow Wilson on April 11, 1917, to the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas, to a new seat authorized by 39 Stat. 938.[1] He was confirmed by the United States Senate on April 12, 1917, and received his commission the same day.[1] His service terminated on August 16, 1924, due to his death in El Paso, Texas.[1] He was interred in Evergreen Cemetery in El Paso.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g William Robert Smith Sr. at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
  2. ^ a b c d e "William Robert Smith". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.


External linksEdit

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
District established
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Texas's 16th congressional district

Succeeded by
Thomas L. Blanton
Legal offices
Preceded by
Seat established by 39 Stat. 938
Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Texas
Succeeded by
Charles Albert Boynton