Miller Center

American President

A Reference Resource

Frederick M. Vinson (1945–1946): Secretary of the Treasury

Frederick Moore Vinson was born on January 22, 1890, in Louisa, Kentucky. He received a law degree from Kentucky's Centre College in 1911 and became involved in state politics. Vinson was elected to the House of Representatives in 1924 and was a major supporter of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal programs.

From 1938 until 1943, Vinson sat as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals. He then served as the director of economic stabilization from 1943 to 1945. Vinson was federal loan administrator for a brief time in 1945 but then became the director of war mobilization and reconversion.

In July of that year, President Harry S. Truman named Vinson secretary of the treasury. Vinson held that post until 1946, when Truman made him chief justice of the United States Supreme Court. Vinson died while serving as chief justice in September 1953.