TOOLE, Joseph Kemp

1851–1929

Biography

TOOLE, Joseph Kemp, a Delegate from the Territory of Montana; born in Savannah, Andrew County, Mo., May 12, 1851; attended the public schools in St. Joseph, Mo., and the Western Military Academy, Newcastle, Ky.; moved to Helena, Mont., in 1870; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1871 and commenced practice in Helena, Mont.; district attorney of the third judicial district of Montana 1872-1876; member of the Territorial house of representatives 1879-1881; member and president of the Territorial council 1881-1883; delegate to the State constitutional conventions at Helena, Mont., in 1884 and 1889; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth and Fiftieth Congresses (March 4, 1885-March 3, 1889); did not seek renomination in 1888, having become a gubernatorial candidate; elected as the first Governor of Montana and served from November 8, 1889, until January 1, 1893; resumed the practice of law in Helena; delegate to the Democratic National Conventions in 1892 and 1904; again elected Governor in November 1900; reelected in 1904 and served from January 7, 1901, until April 1, 1908, when he resigned on account of ill health; lived in retirement, dividing his time between his home in Helena, Mont., and San Francisco, Calif.; died in Helena, Mont., March 11, 1929; interment in Resurrection Cemetery.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

[ Top ]

External Research Collections

Montana Historical Society
Library and Archives Department

Helena, MT
Papers: 1851-1929, 0.2 linear foot. A scrapbook presented to Joseph Porter Toole after the death of his father, Joseph Kemp Toole, in March 1929. The scrapbook, given as a gift to Joseph P. Toole, contains letters of condolence, obituaries, biographical writings, and resolutions from Montana State Legislature and various private organizations.
Papers: 1889, 0.1 linear foot. This collection consists of letters of congratulation to Joseph K. Toole on his speech in Congress on 15 Jan. 1889 urging the passage of the "Omnibus Bill," admitting Montana, North and South Dakota, and Washington as states. Also included is a telegram to Toole from James Blaine in Washington, D.C., announcing the signing of the proclamation declaring Montana a state of the union.
Papers: 1893-1905, 0.1 linear foot. Scattered papers of Joseph K. Toole. Collection consists of correspondence (1893-1905); legal documents concerning family mining properties and the Edwin W. Toole estate; a speech (1899) given at the laying of the Capitol cornerstone; a certificate admitting Toole to practice before the U.S. Supreme Court; and political memorabilia.
Papers: In the Montana Governor Records, 1871-1962, 155 linear feet. Persons represented include Governor Joseph K. Toole.
Papers: In the Toole Family Papers, 1886-1919, 0.1 linear foot. The papers contain a letter (May 22, 1905) from Decius S. Wade to J.K. Toole regarding E.W. Toole's death.
Sound Recordings: In the Taped Public Programs, 1998, 13 tapes. Persons represented include Joseph K. Toole.

Montana State University
Merrill G. Burlingame Special Collections, Bozeman Libraries,

Bozeman, MT
Papers: In the Montana Governor Records (1901-1908: Toole), 0.4 linear foot. Applications, letters of recommendation, and petitions for appointment sent to Joseph Kemp Toole, Governor of Montana.
Papers: In the Richard B. Roeder Papers, 1949-1995, 57 boxes. Persons represented include Joseph Kemp Toole.

University of California, Berkeley
The Bancroft Library

Berkeley, CA
Papers: 1889, 1 folder. Dictation from Joseph Kemp Toole: Helena, 1889. Part of a collection of dictations concerning people and events in the early years of Montana.
[ Top ]