Texas Politics - Speakers of the House
Leg > Speakers > Lindsey
40.    Jim T. Lindsey

Following World War II, the Texas Legislature saw a substantial influx of young, politically inclined, military veterans. Among them was Jim T. Lindsey (1926-), who became a state representative in 1949 while still a student at Baylor University. At one time, Lindsey served in the legislature with no fewer than a dozen of his military-veteran Baylor classmates. In 1955, shortly before his 29th birthday, he advanced to the speakership.

Jim T. Lindsey was born on a Bowie County farm, in the small community of Sand Hill near the county seat of Boston, on February 1, 1926. He was graduated from James Bowie High School in Simms in 1941 and then attended North Texas Agricultural College (now the University of Texas at Arlington) for two years before interrupting his education to enroll in the U.S. Army Air Corps as an aviation cadet. After being released from service in the fall of 1945, Lindsey entered Baylor University to resume his studies, eventually receiving his law degree from that institution in 1950.

Lindsey served as state representative in the 51st through 54th legislatures, assuming the speakership in the 54th Legislature. During his fist term, he briefly attended The University of Texas Law School, while maintaining his residence in Texarkana. Following his graduation from Baylor University, he joined a law firm in that city.

While in the legislature, and before his term as speaker, Lindsey served as chairman of the house revenue and taxation committee. He also was vice-chairman of the legislative audit committee, Legislative Budget Board, and Texas Legislative Council. Lindsey's term as speaker in 1955 was highlighted by passage of the Texas Business Corporation Act, the first general revision of Texas corporation laws since the 1870s, and by a similar revision of the Texas Probate Code.

At the end of the 54th Legislature, Lindsey withdrew as an active candidate for public office. He did choose to serve as chairman of the State Democratic Executive Committee from 1956 to 1959. His business interests have been the practice of law, ranching, finance, and development of the family commercial real estate enterprise. He and his wife, Moja, have been married 48 years and presently reside in Texarkana. They have five children.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Presiding Officers of the Texas Legislature, 1846-2002. [Austin, Tex.]: Texas Legislative Council, 2002. link: Jim Lindsey.

Texas Politics:
© 2005, Liberal Arts Instructional Technology Services
University of Texas at Austin