Term: Philipp, Emanuel Lorenz 1861 - 1925
Definition: businessman, politician, governor, b. Sauk County. He taught country school for a time, and in 1880 became a railroad telegrapher at Baraboo. He was later transferred to Milwaukee, and from 1889 to 1902 held various executive positions with the Gould system lines and with the Schlitz Brewing Co. and its affiliates. He managed a lumber and stave company in Mississippi (1894-1902), and founded the town of Philipp, Tallahatchie County, Miss. In 1903 he organized the Union Refrigerator Transit Co. of Wisconsin, purchasing the equipment of the URT of Ky. (a Gould family property), and eventually built the firm into one of the most successful refrigerator transit companies in the country. A Republican, Philipp supported Robert M. La Follette, Sr. (q.v.), for the governorship in 1900, and assisted in forming a coalition that led to La Follette's nomination and election. With other conservative Republicans, however, he soon grew dissatisfied with La Follette's tax policies, especially in respect to railroads, broke with him in 1901, and after 1904 became one of the ablest leaders of the Stalwart faction of the party. Philipp was the author of The Truth about Wisconsin Freight Rates (1904) and Political Reform in Wisconsin (1910), both books criticizing La Follette's progressive program. In 1914, with the Progressive faction of the Republican party badly split, Philipp was successful in winning the Republican gubernatorial nomination, and in Nov., 1914, was elected governor. He was twice re-elected, and served from Jan., 1915, to Jan., 1921. Although at first charged by some of the progressive leaders with corruption and too great an interest in the railroads, Philipp's scrupulous integrity could never really be challenged. During his administration he favored reduction of expenditures and limitations on independent boards; he provided state aid for the improvement of rural schools; he established the state system of accounting, the State Department of Agriculture, and the State Conservation Commission. With the threat of World War I imminent, Philipp favored neutrality, but vigorously supported the war effort once the U.S. was involved. He organized the state council of defense, and the state food administration, and equipped the Wisconsin National Guard for federal service. As much as any man, Philipp was successful in combatting the violent war hysteria of the time, and was elected to his third term on a platform that both supported the war effort and upheld constitutional liberties. Philipp was also instrumental in establishing a four-year medical course at the Univ. of Wisconsin and in constructing the Wisconsin General Hospital. He was not a candidate for re-election in 1920 and, after leaving the governor's office, retired to his home in Milwaukee where he served as regent of Marquette Univ., and was a director of the Chicago, Milwaukee and St. Paul R.R. R. S. Maxwell, Emanuel L. Philipp (Madison, 1959); Dict. Amer. Biog.; Milwaukee Sentinel, June 16, 1925; E. L. Philipp Papers.
[Source: Dictionary of Wisconsin biography]