SCR 1008 | 30th Legislature, Second Regular Session (1972)

A Concurrent Resolution on the death of The Honorable Carl Hayden (co-sponsor with entire Senate)

Role of Senator O'Connor: Co-sponsor

Signed into law: January 28, 1972

document icon View PDF of law as passed

DISCLAIMER: This text has been pulled automatically from the scan of the bill from the State of Arizona Research Library. If you would like to quote the exact text of this bill in any piece of work or research, please view the original using the link above and gather your quote directly from the source. The Sandra Day O'Connor Institute does not warrant, represent, or guarantee in any way that the text below is accurate.


(Automatically generated)


Introduced by Arizona State Senate/and House of Representatives A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION


Arizona and the nation is saddened by the death of United States Senator Carl Hayden, a native Arizonan without peer.

"The grand old man of Congress", the Honorable Mr. Hayden passed away on January 25, 1972, at Mesa, Arizona, at the age of ninety-four.

He was the dean of the United States Senate, served in Congress fifty-six years, an all-time record, including more than forty-one years in the Senate, also a record. He was the first man to serve fifty years in Congress and was Arizona's first and only Congressman in the United States House of Representatives for fifteen years.

Never a loud fighter, yet a leader, not by might but by ability and insight, Senator Hayden quietly earned the many titles of respect bestowed upon him by the ten presidents with whom he served and other leaders of the nation. President Harry Truman referred to him as "America's Silent Senator". President Calvin Coolidge said he was "The Desert Fox". He was also "Mr. Washington", "A Senator's Senator", "The Best Trader in the Senate" and "The Father of the Highway Federal Aid Program".

The ever-barefoot son of a Connecticut Yankee whose mule teams hauled goods from Sante Fe, New Mexico, to Tucson, Arizona, one hundred twenty-four years ago, Mr. Hayden was born October 2, 1877, at Hayden's Ferry, now Tempe, Arizona.

He was educated in Tempe schools including Tempe Normal School, now Arizona State University, and Stanford University, where he was a member of the debate team and center on the football team.

As a boy he drove his father's cows in from pasture, rode an old horse to the Grand Canyon and back by himself before he was a teenager and had finished a nine-volume history of the world by age twelve. His sister, "Miss Sallie", said he never wore shoes, except to church, until he went to college. He was the national long-range rifle champion in 1911 and an infantry major in World War I.

He met and married his wife, Nan Downing, when both were students at Stanford. They were married fifty-three years when she died in 1961. Mrs. Hayden designed and made the copper, gold and blue cloth flag adopted as Arizona's official state flag.

Senator Hayden began his public career in 1902 as a member of the Tempe Town Council. He was Maricopa County Treasurer from 1904 to 1906 and was Maricopa County Sheriff from 1907 until elected to Congress in 1911. He was sworn in as Arizona's only Representative in Congress five days after Arizona became a state on Valentine's Day in 1912. He was elected to the United States Senate in 1926 and served continuously until his retirement January 3, 1969.

He felt his crowning achievement was passage during his last term in Congress of the legislation authorizing the Central Arizona Project, a project he began in 1938 when he convinced The Bureau of Reclamation to start the engineering work.

His special fields in Congress included highways, irrigation, reclamation, agriculture and mining. He was a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee from 1927 until retirement and its Chairman the last fourteen years. He was Chairman of the Committee on Rules and Administration, a member of the Committee on Post Offices and Post Roads and sponsored the legislation that set the formula for distribution of federal aid to highways on basis of area rather than population. In 1937 he obtained three million dollars for the Salt River Project, Headgate Rock Dam and the Gila Project. He is credited with obtaining the Coolidge Dam and San Carlos Project. In 1950, he obtained four hundred thousand dollars for Indian social security benefits. He did much to make Arizona a prominent air training center.

President John F. Kennedy summed it up when he said of Senator Hayden:

"Every federal project which has contributed to the West - irrigation, power and reclamation - bears his mark. And the great federal highway program which binds this country together. - this in large measure is his creation."

He was known as a Senator who did his legislative homework, made few speeches, worked twelve hours a day, seven days a week."a working, walking encyclopedia of legislative information". When questioned about his aversion to speech making he replied, "When you've got the votes you don't have to talk".

On his eightieth birthday a scroll prepared by a friend in Congress had space for twenty-five signatures, but when it reached him it had one hundred seventy-four thousand six hundred eighty-eight signatures.

After his retirement he kept busy in his office in the library named in honor of his father at Arizona State University. He worked at the same desk he had used for forty years in the Senate.

When Senator Hayden was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws Degree by the University of Arizona in 1948, the citation said in part:

"His services to the state have been various and unsurpassed. Particularly as a specialist in legislation affecting irrigation and federal highways he has played a major role in the reclamation of her fertile acres and in opening her scenic, climatic and industrial treasures to new citizens and visitors from over the world."

Huge irrigation and power projects, green vistas of reclaimed desert, and uncounted miles of wide, straight highways will long endure as monuments to Carl Hayden of Arizona.


Be it resolved by the Senate of the State of Arizona, the House of Representatives concurring:

That the Legislature of the State of Arizona wishes to express its sincere regret and profound sorrow over the passing of the Honorable Carl Hayden and do extend its sympathies and condolences to the surviving members of his family.

Unanimously adopted by the Senate - January 27, 1972

Unanimously adopted by the House of Representatives - January 27, 1972

Approved by the Governor - January 28, 1972

Header photo: Arizona State Capitol. Credit: Gage Skidmore / Wikipedia - CC.