Lord Chancellor and possible successors

Here’s a photograph from the March 7 1928 edition of the Toronto Daily Star of the Lord Chancellor of Britain and two men who might have been about to succeed him in that office:

George Cave, 1st Viscount Cave (1856-1928) was in poor health indeed: he passed away a little over three weeks after these photos appeared in the newspaper. He resigned his office of Lord Chancellor on the day of his death. He was awarded an earldom on that day, which was normally hereditary; however, he and his wife’s four children had all died shortly after birth, so his viscountcy became extinct when he passed away and his earldom became extinct when his wife did.

Douglas Hogg, later 1st Viscount Hailsham (1872-1950), was persuaded to become Lord Chancellor after all, holding the office from 1928 to 1929, when the Conservatives were defeated in office, and again from 1935 to 1938. He left the office when he suffered a severe stroke, which forced him to learn to write with his left hand. His grandson, also Douglas Hogg (and 3rd Viscount Hailsham), was also a Conservative politician; he chose not to run again for his seat in Parliament when it was discovered that he had used taxpayers’ money to have the moat of his castle cleaned.

F. E. Smith, 1st Earl of Birkenhead (1872-1930) had apparently, by this time, become known for his pompous oratory. He had been Lord Chancellor from 1919 to 1922. He passed away a little more than two years after these photos appeared; the cause of death was pneumonia resulting from cirrhosis of the liver.

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