Winfield Scott Hammond (November 17, 1863 - December 30, 1915) was an American politician. He was a Democrat.
Born in 1863 in Southborough, Massachusetts, he served from Minnesota in the United States House of Representatives from March 4, 1907 to January 6, 1915. He was the 18th Governor of Minnesota from January 5, 1915 until his death December 30, 1915. He was the second governor of Minnesota to die in office. Joseph Alfred Arner Burnquist succeeded to the governorship to fill the vacancy left by Hammond's death.
Minnesota's eighteenth governor had little time to effect significant change before he died in office. Had he lived longer, perhaps Winfield Scott Hammond would have realized his ambitious plans to reorganize state government by minimizing bureaucracy and eliminating waste to make Minnesota's wheels turn more efficiently. Instead, his most notable legislation was the "county option bill," a restriction on liquor sales that pleased prohibition advocates.
An inscription under a bust of Hammond in the capitol describes him aptly as "a scholar in politics." He earned bachelor's and master's degrees from Dartmouth College and upon moving to Mankato at age 21, became principal of its high school. He later studied law while he supervised schools in Watonwan County. He made his permanent home in St. James, where he practiced law and established himself as a political contender.
A staunch Democrat in a Republican community, he lost his first bid for Congress in 1892, but perseverance and bipartisan support eventually brought him a congressional seat 14 years later. He interrupted his fourth consecutive term to leave Washington and run for governor.
Hammond had been in office only eight months when he suffered ptomaine poisoning on a trip south and died of a stroke in the little bayou town of Clinton, Louisiana.
Preceded by: Adolph Olson Eberhart Governor of Minnesota 1915 Succeeded by: Joseph A. A. Burnquist