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History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/Marcellus L. Temple

Marcellus L. Temple - History of Iowa.jpg
[M. L. Temple]


MARCELLUS L. TEMPLE, author of the notable “Temple Amendment,” was born in Wadestown, Virginia, September 16, 1848. He attended the West Virginia University from which he graduated in 1873. The same year he came west locating at Osceola, Clarke County, Iowa, where he was admitted to the bar and entered upon the practice of his profession. Mr. Temple was a conservative Democrat until 1882 when his party declared against the prohibitory amendment to the Constitution, when he canvassed the State for the amendment, voted for it and has since acted with the Republican party. In 1892 he was chosen on the Republican ticket one of the presidential electors, and the following year was a delegate to the Republican State Convention. He was elected a Representative to the House of the Twenty-sixth General Assembly in 1895, serving in the regular and extra sessions as chairman of the first division of the Code Commission. As the result of his connection with important railroad legislation, he introduced and secured the passage of the famous “Temple Amendment” which was enacted into law in 1898. Mr. Temple was defeated for reëlection in 1897 but in 1899 he was again elected, serving in the Twenty-eighth General Assembly as chairman of the judiciary committee of the House. He was the leading candidate for Speaker until he withdrew to secure harmony among the supporters of John H. Gear for United States Senator. He became the recognized Republican leader of the House during that session.