University of Kentucky Libraries: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Wilson W. Wyatt, Sr. Oral History Project

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Wilson W. Wyatt Sr., born in Louisville in 1905, attended the University of Louisville. While working for the Louisville and Nashville Railroad, he attended evening classes at the Jefferson School of Law; he was admitted to the Kentucky Bar in 1927. Wyatt married Anne Kinnaird Duncan in 1930 and became a junior partner in the law firm of Peter, Heyburn, Marshall and Wyatt in 1935. He then began working with the Robert Worth Bingham family and corporate empire, becoming principal counsel for the Louisville Courier-Journal and Times, WHAS radio and television, and other Bingham enterprises. From 1941 to 1945, Wyatt was mayor of Louisville. In 1946, he served as housing expediter in the Office of War Mobilization and played an important role in the formation of Americans for Democratic Action, becoming its first chairman in 1947. He was manager of Adlai Stevenson's 1952 presidential campaign and played a prominent role in his 1956 campaign. In 1959, he successfully ran for lieutenant governor on a united ticket with Bert T. Combs; he lost to incumbent Thruston B. Morton in the 1962 election for the United States Senate. Wyatt returned to Louisville in 1963 and established the state's largest law firm. Since leaving public office, he has continued to work in a wide variety of civic and cultural activities in Louisville and throughout Kentucky. These interviews with Wyatt, his wife and daughter, and an assistant document his life and political career. The complete collection record can be accessed on SPOKEdb, the Nunn Center's online collection catalog: <a href="