J. Hamilton Lewis (May 18, 1863 - April 9, 1939) was the first Senator to hold the title of Whip in the United States Senate. Lewis was born in Danville, Virginia, and also grew up in Augusta, Georgia. He was educated at the University of Virginia and studied law in Savannah, Georgia before he served in the Spanish-American War and went on to represent Washington (1897-1899) in the United States House of Representatives and Illinois (1913-1919, 1931-1939) in the United States Senate as a member of the Democratic Party. Lewis served as Majority Whip from 1913 until 1919. He would hold this position again from 1933 until his death in 1939. He was one of few politicians to represent two states in the United States Congress. He was defeated for reelection to the Senate in 1918, but regained his seat in the election in 1930. He ran unsuccessfully for governor of Illinois in 1908 and 1920.
Lewis was known to be eccentric and a talented orator. He was buried in the Abbey Mausoleum near Arlington National Cemetery but his remains were later moved to an unknown location.
Preceded by: Shelby M. Cullom United States Senator from Illinois 1913-1919 Succeeded by: Medill McCormick Preceded by: Charles S. Deneen United States Senator from Illinois 1931-1939 Succeeded by: James M. Slattery Preceded by: (none) United States Senate Majority Whip 1913-1919 Succeeded by: Charles Curtis Preceded by: Simeon D. Fess United States Senate Majority Whip 1933-1939 Succeeded by: Lister Hill