Hattie Wyatt Caraway (1878-1950), U. S. Senator from Arkansas 1931-1944, was the first woman elected to the U.S. Senate in her own right. She was born February 1, 1878, near Bakersville, Tennessee. At fourteen, she entered Dickson (Tennessee) Normal College, where she earned a B.A. degree in 1896 and also met Thaddeus Horatius Caraway, a fellow student several years older than she. The couple married in 1902 and had three sons, Paul Wyatt, Forrest, and Robert Easley. They settled in Arkansas where Thaddeus Caraway practiced law and entered first local and then state politics.
Thaddeus Caraway was elected to the United States Congress in 1912, and to the Senate in 1920. He was reelected in 1926 but died unexpectedly in 1931, and his widow was appointed in his place. In a special election early in 1932 she was elected to the office. Unexpectedly she decided to run for a full term in 1932, and supported by Huey Long of Louisiana, she conducted an intense campaign and won the Democratic nomination, tantamount to election.
In 1938 she won her second full term, and continued to support the Roosevelt economic program.. She lost her race for a third term in 1944, but remained in Washington in other Civil Service positions. Hattie Caraway died December 21, 1950.