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Will Hays [left to right] Will Rogers and Will Hays, c. 1925. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-83080).

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Hays, Will H. (05 November 1879–07 March 1954), motion picture industry official, lawyer, and politician, was born William Harrison Hays in Sullivan, Indiana, the son of John T. Hays, an attorney, and Mary Cain. He graduated from Indiana’s all-male Wabash College in 1900 and privately studied law. Upon passing the Indiana bar, Hays opened a law office in Sullivan and became city attorney. He moved through a variety of political offices in Indiana before he was named chairman of the Republican National Committee in June 1918. When ...

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Laurence Langner Photograph by Carl Van Vechten, 1934. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LOT 12735, no. 663 P&P).

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Langner, Lawrence (30 May 1890–26 December 1962), patent agent, playwright, and theatrical producer, was born in Swansea, South Wales, the son of Baruch Bernard Freedman, a businessman, and Cecilia Sarah Langner. (He took his mother’s maiden name.) He attended private schools in Swansea and in Margate, England. After a brief stint as a clerk for a theatrical manager in 1903, he was apprenticed to Wallace Cranston Fairweather, a chartered patent agent in London. Langner passed examinations of the British Chartered Institute of Patent Agents in 1910....

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Owen Young. [left to right] C. C. Dill, Owen Young, and James Couzens, before the Senate Interstate Commerce Commission. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-98142).

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Young, Owen D. (27 October 1874–11 July 1962), lawyer, business leader, and public servant, was born in Van Hornesville, New York, the son of Jacob Smith Young and Ida Brandow, farmers. Enrolling in St. Lawrence University in 1890, he graduated in 1894. In 1896 he graduated from Boston University Law School cum laude, completing the three-year program in two years. From 1896 to 1903 Young taught evening classes in common-law pleading at the law school....