Miller Center

American President

A Reference Resource

William H. Hays (1921–1922): Postmaster General

William Harrison Hays was born in Sullivan, Indiana, on November 5, 1879. Hays studied law and became a lawyer and Republican activist. He served as chairman of the Indiana Republican State Committee (1918-1921) and of the Republican National Committee (1918-1921).

President Warren G. Harding appointed him postmaster general in 1921, and Hays remained in that position until 1922. He then became president of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America, and he proposed and administered the "Hays Code" to ensure that films maintain a particular moral standard. Hays died on March 7, 1954.