Hilda Phelps Hammond

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Hilda Phelps Hammond​​​

(Organizer of women's group opposing the Huey Long regime)​​

Hilda Phelps Hammond of LA.jpg

Born April 15, 1890​​
New Orleans, Louisiana

Alma mater:
​ Sophie Newcomb College​

Died October 20, 1951 (aged 61)​​
New Orleans, Louisiana

Resting place:
​ Metairie Cemetery in New Orleans

Spouse Arthur Browne Hammond, Sr.​ (married 1918–1951, her death)

Arthur Hammond, Jr.
John Phelps Hammond, Sr.
Blanche Hammond Scott
Mrs. William North
​​ Ashton and Blanche Moulton Phelps
Jock Scott (grandson)

Religion Episcopalian

Hilda Phelps Hammond (April 15, 1890 – October 20, 1951)[1] was a political activist from her native New Orleans, Louisiana, who was known for her heated opposition to the Long political dynasty.


Hammond was the daughter of Ashton Phelps (1853–1919), president of the publishing companies for The Times-Democrat (1889-1914) and The New Orleans Times-Picayune (1914–1919), and the former Blanche Moulton (1862–1917). In 1909, Hilda Phelps graduated as senior class president from H. Sophie Newcomb Memorial College, the former women's college affiliated with Tulane University which closed in 2006.[2]

Hammond was the state chairperson of the Women’s Committee for the Council of National Defense during World War I. In the early 1830s, she tried to bring about defeat for both U.S. Senators John Holmes Overton, Sr. (1875–1948) and Huey Pierce Long, Jr., whom she accused of election fraud. In November 1933, she testified before the United States Senate Investigating Committee. She was the founder and first chairman of the Women's Committee of Louisiana, a reform organization which advocated honest government and ridding the state of the Long regime. In 1934, the year before Huey Long's assassination, she published the pamphlet, Is the Senate Afraid of Huey Long? In 1936, she authored the book entitled Let Freedom Ring, which details her endeavors for reform. In the late 1920s, Hammond contributed a weekly column to The New Orleans Times-Picayune, which blended historical stories with her classic New Orleans recipes. She also hosted a news commentary program on several radio stations in New Orleans.[2][3]

In 1917, at Trinity Episcopal Church in New Orleans, Hilda Phelps wed Pennsylvania native Arthur Browne Hammond, Sr. (1890–1963), an attorney whom Huey Long subsequently fired in 1930 from the New Orleans Dock Board, an action which galvanized Hilda Hammond to fight the Long regime. Arthur outlived his wife by twelve years and died the day after the assassination of U.S. President John F. Kennedy. The couple had four children, Arthur Hammond, Jr.; John Phelps Hammond, Sr.; Blanche Hammond Scott (1920-1985), the wife of U.S. District Judge Nauman Steele Scott (1916–2001) of Alexandria, and Mrs. William North.[2] Hammond had a brother, Esmond Phelps (1888–1950), who was born two years before his sister and died the year preceding her death.[1] One of her grandsons, Jock Scott, was an attorney and college professor who represented Rapides Parish in the Louisiana House of Representatives from 1976 to 1988. He was four years of age when his grandmother died. Another grandson, John Phelps Hammond, Jr. (1961–2017), worked in the financial services industry.[4]

Hilda Hammond died in New Orleans at the age of sixty-one. She and her husband are interred at Metaire Cemetery in New Orleans.[1]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Hilda Phelps Hammond. Findagrave.com. Retrieved on May 4, 2020.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Hammond, Hilda Phelps. A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography: Louisiana Historical Association. Retrieved on May 4, 2020.
  3. 'A Dictionary of Louisiana Biography uses these sources for the article on Hilda Hammond: Pamela Tyler, Silk Stockings and the Ballot Box: Women and Politics in New Orleans, 1920-1965 (1996), and The New Orleans Times-Picayune obituary, October 21, 23, 1951.
  4. John Phelps Hammond, Jr.. Lakelawn.tributes.com (November 2017). Retrieved on May 4, 2020.

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