Robert Glenmore Simmons, 1891-1969 [RG3642.AM]


RG3642.AM:  Robert Glenmore Simmons, 1891-1969

Papers:  1922-1969
Lincoln, Nebraska:  Lawyer, Congressman, Nebraska Supreme Court Chief Justice
Size:  5.0 cu.ft.; 5 boxes & oversized volumes


Robert Glenmore Simmons was born on Christmas Day 1891 in a sod house in Scotts Bluff County, Nebraska.  Most of his early schooling was in Gering, Nebraska.  While in high school, he worked part time in the law office of Wright and Wright in Scottsbluff.  Simmons went to Hastings College for two years and then transferred to the University of Nebraska from which he graduated in 1915.

Simmons returned to Scotts Bluff County in 1916 and became county attorney.  After a year, he enlisted in the air corps and served throughout World War I.  In 1918 Simmons became Judge Advocate of General Courts Martial and taught officers training school.  After a year, he returned again to Scottsbluff, to practice law, where he stayed until 1922.  In 1920 he was named Department Commander of the American Legion in Nebraska.  In 1921 Simmons became president of the University of Nebraska Alumni Association.  In 1922 he was elected United States Representative from Nebraska’s sixth district and served five terms until his defeat in the Democratic landslide of 1932.  Simmons returned to Lincoln and reopened his law practice, which he maintained until 1938 when he was elected Chief Justice of the Nebraska Supreme Court.  Before that time, in 1934 and 36, he ran for U.S. Senator but was defeated.

Throughout his career as Chief Justice, Simmons traveled extensively throughout the world, including 2 trips to the Far East in a judicial exchange sponsored by the State Department.  Simmons also sponsored several projects, including the donation of law libraries to developing countries.  An important project for Nebraska high school students, which Simmons began, was the formation of County Government and Boys and Girls State which enabled students to learn more about State and local government.  After his retirement in January of 1963, Simmons remained active I public life although he was restricted by a heart attack in December of 1959.   He died on December 27, 1969.


This collection, the papers of Robert Glenmore Simmons, consists of 4 boxes of manuscript material and 19 scrapbooks.

This collection is arranged in 9 series: 1) Correspondence, 1924-1963; 2) Research material relating to early law practice in Nebraska, 1941-1942; 3) Speeches and statements, 1933-1960; 4) Press releases, 1933-1960; 5) Newspaper clippings, 1934-1961; 6) Photos, 1950’s; 7) Miscellany, 1934-1970; 8) Printed matter, 1935-1969; and 9) Scrapbooks, 1922-1951.

This collection relates to the public life of Robert Glenmore Simmons from 1922 until his death in 1969.  the bulk of the material is his correspondence, of which over half deals with the gathering of source material for a paper on the early practice of law in Nebraska.  Much of the material he collected is attached to the correspondence.  Also attached to correspondence are newspaper clippings and photos dealing with the donation of law books to developing countries.  Most of the speeches and press releases deal with Simmons’ Senatorial campaign in 1934 and 1936.  However, there are a large number of speeches on various topics given throughout his career as Chief Justice.  The newspaper clippings also relate primarily to Simmons’ Senatorial campaigns of 1934 and 1936.  Most of the publications are from the years Simmons was Chief Justice.  Included with these is a partial bibliography of his publications.

The collection was given by his daughter, Jean Simmons Wear on November 5, 1973.  Photographs of the Nebraska Supreme Court, taken throughout Simmons' career, have been transferred to the Society's Photo collections.


Series 1 - General Correspondence, 1924-1963
Box 1 

  1. 1924-1938
  2. May-June 1941
  3. August 1941
  4. September 1941
  5. October 1941
  6. November 1941
  7. December 1941
  8. 1942
  9. 1943
  10. 1946-1952
  11. 1954-1959
  12. 1960-1963

Series 2 - Research Material, Early Law Practice in Nebraska, 1941-1942
Box 2

  1. 1941-1942

Series 3 - Speeches and Statements, 1933-1960, n.d.

  1. Statement to House Rules Committee, February 1943
  2. 1933-1935
  3. 1943-1960 and undated

Series 4 - Press Releases, 1933-1960, n.d.

  1. 1933-1960 and undated

Series 5 - Newspaper Clippings, 1934-1961

  1. Campaign clippings, 1934-1936

Box 3

  1. Campaign clippings, 1936
  2. Miscellaneous clippings, 1931-1969

Series 6 - Photographs, 1950s (additional photographs are filed in Photo archives)

  1. Miscellaneous photographs
  2. Presentation of law books, 1954-1960

Series 7 - Miscellany, 1934-1970

  1. Speeches and manuscripts not by Simmons
  2. Campaign material, 1936
  3. Voting records:  68th - 72nd Congresses; and 74th Congress
  4. Essays written by Philippine High School students on a talk by Simmons, 1952
  5. Resolution from Cornhusker Boys and Girls State given at the time of Simmons’ death, January 1970

Series 8 - Printed Matter, 1935-1969
Box 4

  1. Bibliography of Simmons’ publications (not complete), 1935-1947
  2. 1948-1969
  3. Publications about Simmons
  4. Miscellaneous printed matter

Series 9 - Scrapbooks, 1922-1959
Box 5

  1. 1923-1924
  2. 1922-1926 (see oversize)
  3. 1929-1932
  4. 1934 (see oversize)
  5. 1934 (see oversize
  6. 1934
  7. 1934
  8. 1935-1936 (see oversize)
  9. 1935-1936
  10. 1935-1936
  11. 1936
  12. 1938
  13. 1936-1939 (see oversize)
  14. 1939-1947 (see oversize)
  15. 1952 (see oversize)
  16. 1952 (see oversize)
  17. 1952
  18. 1953-1955 (see oversize)
  19. 1956-1959 (see oversize)


Subject headings:

Law -- Nebraska
Lawyers -- Nebraska
Nebraska Supreme Court
Politics and government -- Nebraska
Simmons, Robert Glenmore, 1891-1969


APD/ct                    10-13-1975
Revised TMM        04-18-2018

Become a History Nebraska Member Today

Learn More