Member Biography

Wiliam Evans Crow 


Library of Congress


03/10/1870 - 08/02/1922

William Evans Crow (R32) Fayette County 1907-1921

Early Life: 

William Evans Crow, born March 10, 1870, German Township, Fayette County, Pennsylvania; son of Josiah Benton Crow and Elizabeth McCombs; reared farm; basic education, Southwestern State Normal School, 1890, graduated Waynesboro College: engaged, newspapers, attorney, lumber, coal, farming; appointed, assistant district attorney, 1896; elected, Republican, district attorney, 1898-1901; elected, Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate 1907-1921; appointed, United States Senator, 1921-1922; married Adelaide Curry 1897, four children: Evans, William, Elinore and Warren; died at his home, 'Chalk Hill,' near Uniontown, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, August 2, 1922, interment: Uniontown Cemetery, Fayette County, Pennsylvania (i)

Early Career:

Newspaper business 1891, reporter, Brownsville Clipper, Pittsburgh Press. Editor, Uniontown Republican Standard (later News-Standard) 1893.

Preparing for a legal career under Boyd and Umbel, Uniontown; bar association, 1895, Law partnership of Shelby and Crow, 1905.

Pennsylvania Politics:

Secretary, Republican Fayette County Committee 1895, 1896, and 1897, Chairman, 1898 -1910.

Appointed, assistant district attorney, 1896.

Elected, Republican, District Attorney, 1898-1901.

Delegate, Republican Nation Convention, Chicago, June 7- June 10, 1916.

Member, Republican State Committee 1899-1901, and 1918; Chairman, 1913-1915; member, Republican National Committee 1913-1920.

Elected, Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate, 32nd district, Fayette County, 1907-1921; elected, President pro tempore, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1909 -1911; Senate Majority Caucus Leader, 1919 -1921; Chaired, Federal Relations Committee, Railroads, Corporations, Executive Nominations, and Finance Committees; member, Appropriations, Banks and Building and Loan Associations Committees. Resigned, October 24, 1921.

Continued Government Service/National Politics:

Appointed, Republican, United States Senate, October 17, 1921, (vacancy, death, Philander C. Knox. Served October 24, 1921, until his death, August 2, 1922. (i)

Legislative Accomplishments:

The Chair of the 1913 Corporations Committee, produced the state’s first Workmen’s Compensation Act, supported enactment of the Public Service Commission bill, aided in the adoption of the 17th Amendment (United States Senators), and backed the state’s 1913 Election Bill (in compliance to federal law). 

Championed, 1913 voter registration and voting machine act, Commonwealth’s 1913 Civil Rights bill, 1911 Anthracite Mine Safety Act, the Sproul Highway Act, and a bill exempting direct descendants from inheritance taxes.  

An act “Establishing a School System in Pennsylvania” was the highlight of Crow’s 1911 session as pro tem.  After previous support of the 1909 school code, the senator proved instrumental in the enactment of the first modern education bill, a 28-article code establishing a four-class school system, applicable to districts encompassing from less than 5,000 to over 500,000 residents.  School directors stood responsible for levying local taxes, and citizens bore responsibility to pay them.  In particular, the system required local occupational taxes to finance state normal, vocational, special, high, joint, and teachers’ schools.  Crow supported the death penalty, the 18th and 19th Amendments (prohibition and women’s suffrage),  1913 direct primary election law, and sponsored Governor Sproul’s 1919 Constitutional Commission proposal.  In 1921, he opposed Sam Salus’s Equal Rights (Accomodations) Bill and backed the session’s Full Crew Repealer, a measure responding to railroad management’s complaint of union featherbedding.


Son, United States Congressman William Josiah Crow 80th (1947–1949)


Smull’s Legislative Hand Book, (1916) Miller, H. Biographical Sketches of Senators, pages 1093 and 1123-1126.



Congressional Biography

After 8 session(s) serving in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, Wiliam Evans Crow  went on to serve in congress