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This Day in Georgia History

February 18, 1937

Lamartine Hardman Died

Former Gov. Lamartine Hardman died in Atlanta. [Some sources cite Feb. 19.] Born in Harmony Grove (now Commerce), Georgia, Hardman began his career in the field of medicine, where he was innovative in further developing the field of anesthesiology begun by fellow-Georgian Crawford Long. Hardman was also a very successful businessman, owning cotton and roller mills, a bank, a drug company, and founding the Commerce Telephone Company. Hardman was first elected to the Georgia legislature in 1902. He served as both a representative and senator over the course of the next ten years, primarily sponsoring agricultural legislation. He also introduced the bill creating a state board of health, and wrote Georgia’s prohibition statute. After serving in the General Assembly, Hardman served as Georgia’s fuel administrator during World War I and also directed the Georgia Experiment Station in Griffin. In 1926, Hardman was elected governor after two unsuccessful attempts. He won reelection despite being seventy-six years old and in ill health. His terms as governor were noted primarily for promoting business-like efficiency in government through appointment of the Commission on Simplification and Coordination, headed by Ivan Allen, Sr.