William G. Pickrel

William Gillespie Pickrel (February 1, 1888 – March 7, 1966) was an American attorney and politician who served as the 40th and 43rd Lieutenant Governor of Ohio in 1928 and 1931-1933 under Governor A. Victor Donahey.[1]


William G. Pickrel, nicknamed "Big Bill,"[2] was born in Jackson, Ohio on February 1, 1888, the son of D. L. and Martha (née Miller) Pickrel.[3][4] He was educated in Jackson and Dayton, graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio in 1910, received a law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law in 1912, and practiced law in Dayton.

Pickrel was a civic and legal activist, including serving as President of the Dayton and Ohio Bar Associations, a state bar examiner, a director of the Dayton Chamber of Commerce and a trustee of Miami University.[5][6]

A member of the Democratic Party, Pickrel ran unsuccessfully for the United States House of Representatives in 1920. In 1928 Cyrus Locher was appointed to the United States Senate. Lieutenant Governor Earl D. Bloom resigned in order to accept appointment to Locher's place as state Secretary of Commerce, and Pickrel was then appointed to the Lieutenant Governor's office vacated by Bloom. Pickrel completed Bloom's term, serving from April to November, 1928.[7]

In 1930 Pickrel was the successful Democratic nominee for Lieutenant Governor and served one term, January, 1931 to January, 1933. He was renominated for Lieutenant Governor in 1932, but withdrew before the general election.[8] He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for Governor in 1934.[9]

In 1944 he ran unsuccessfully for the United States Senate against Republican incumbent Robert A. Taft; he received 49.7% of the vote to Taft's 50.3%.[10] He died of a heart ailment in a Dayton hospital on March 7, 1966.[11]


  1. "Lieutenant Governors Of The State Of Ohio: 1852 - Present". Ohio Secretary of State. Retrieved 2012-01-24.
  2. Alexander P. Lamis, Mary Anne Sharkey, editors, Ohio Politics, 1994, page 198
  3. Charles William Taylor, Bench and Bar of Ohio, 1939
  4. "Ohio, County Births, 1841-2003". FamilySearch. Retrieved 2013-06-16.
  5. Portsmouth Times, Taft Runs for 2nd Term With Pickrel as Foe, November 6, 1944
  6. "OSBA Past Presidents". Ohio State Bar Association. Retrieved 2012-12-07.
  7. Toledo News-Bee, Pickrel Named to Bloom's Post, April 7, 1928
  8. Associated Press, Portsmouth (Ohio) Times, Pickrel Hands in Withdrawal, August 14, 1932
  9. Youngstown Vindicator, Pickrel to Campaign Here for Senate Post, May 2, 1944
  10. Pickrel, Schaeffer, and Ebeling law firm, History, Pickrel, Schaeffer, and Ebeling, retrieved November 21, 2013
  11. "W. G. Pickrel, Former State Official, Dies", Findlay Republican Courier, Tuesday, March 08, 1966, Findlay, Ohio, United States Of America
Political offices
Preceded by
Earl D. Bloom
Lieutenant Governor of Ohio
Succeeded by
George C. Braden
Preceded by
John T. Brown
Lieutenant Governor of Ohio
Succeeded by
Charles W. Sawyer
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