Cordell Hull is Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize
Cordell Hull has devoted his entire life to the stabilization of international relations. Best known to the public are his untiring efforts in the field of commercial policy, efforts inspired by his desire to counteract autarchic tendencies both in the U.S.A. and abroad. Of these efforts, which considerably influenced national policies during the period between the wars and especially at the end of the twenties, he says: «There can be no real progress toward confidence or peace nor permanent trade recovery while retaliations and bitter trade controversies rage.»1 Confidence and peace between nations have constituted his goal in all spheres of his activity. This is the driving spirit behind his fight against isolationism at home, his efforts to create a peace bloc of states on the American continents, and his work for the United Nations Organization.
”— Gunnar Jahn, Chairman of the Nobel Committee
Cordell Hull (October 2, 1871–July 23, 1955) was an American politician from the U.S. state of Tennessee. He is best-known as the longest-serving Secretary of State, holding the position for 11 years (1933–1944) in the administration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Hull received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1945 for his role in establishing the United Nations, and was referred to by President Roosevelt as the Father of the United Nations.
Hull was born in a log cabin in Olympus, which is now part of Pickett County, Tennessee, but was then part of Overton County. He became the elected chairman of the Clay County Democratic Party at the age of 19.
In 1891, Hull graduated from Cumberland School of Law at Cumberland University and was admitted to the bar as a teenager. He served in the Tennessee House of Representatives from 1893 to 1897. During the Spanish-American War, he served in Cuba as a captain in the Fourth Regiment of the Tennessee Volunteer Infantry.
Hull served 11 terms in the United States House of Representatives (1907–1921 and 1923–1931) and authored the federal income tax laws of 1913 and 1916 and the inheritance tax of 1916. After an electoral defeat in 1920, Hull served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee. He was elected to the Senate in 1930, but resigned upon being named Secretary of State in 1933.
In 1933 Hull was appointed Secretary of State by Franklin D. Roosevelt; he served 11 years until he retired from public office. Hull became the underlying force and architect in the creation of the United Nations, drafting, along with his staff, the United Nations Charter in mid-1943. He resigned as Secretary of State in November 1944 because of failing health.
In 1945 Cordell Hull was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for "co-initiating the United Nations".
Hull died after suffering several strokes and heart attacks in 1955 in Washington, D.C., and is buried in the vault of the Chapel of St. Joseph of Arimathea in the Washington National Cathedral, which is an Episcopal church.
There is now a Cordell Hull Museum located near his birthplace in Byrdstown, Tennessee, which houses his papers and other memorabilia.