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Theodore Francis Green papers

Biographical note

Born October 2, 1867 in Providence, RI, U. S. Senator Theodore Francis Green received his A.B. (1887) and A.M. (1888) from Brown University. He studied law, 1888-1892, at Harvard Law School and the Universities of Berlin and Bonn, Germany. Returning to Providence, he practiced law after admittance to the Rhode Island Bar in 1892 and taught Roman Law at Brown, 1894-1898. He received a commission as a lieutenant during the Spanish-American War.

Green served RISD as a Trustee and Honorary Trustee from 1900 till his death in 1966. In addition, he served as Vice-President (1907-1939), Acting President (1913, 1931), a member of the Executive Committee (1900-1936), and Chair of the Endowment Committees of 1902 and 1910. He served as a trustee of Brown University, Butler Hospital for the Insane, and Providence Public Library as well as Chair of the Providence City Plan Commission, 1917-1919.

Green began his political career in 1906 winning election to the State House (Providence; 11th District) as a member of the reform Lincoln Party, serving a one-year term. Created by wealthy Rhode Island families such as the Metcalfs, Goddards, and Sharpes, the Lincoln party aligned with the Democratic Party against the corrupt Republican Party machine. Moving to the Democratic Party, Green remained active in politics running unsuccessfully for Governor (1912; 1930) and Congress, 1st District (1918). Renominated for Governor in 1932, Green won the election and then reelection in 1934. The 1935 New Years Day "Green Revolution" broke the Republican Party's control of state government. In 1936, he defeated fellow RISD Trustee Jesse H. Metcalf for a seat in the U. S. Senate. He served until 1961.