John R. Kittrell – Democrat, Elected


  • AG04_KittrellJohnRJohn R. Kittrell - Nevada Historical Society

4th Nevada Attorney General
Term:  January 4, 1875 - January 6, 1879

Biography

John R. Kittrell, born in 1829 in North Carolina, apparently remained there long enough to be acculturated to the values of “his old south”.  His obituary indicates that he “[w]as a southern Democrat and inherited all the prejudices of the south in his dislike of everything Republican.”  Another account portrays Kittrell as “uncompromising a foe to the causes and institution of the Union as any White Leaguer of the South.”  The account also stated that he was “a man of pleasing manners when he don’t [sic] display the bitter Rebel side of his character.[1]  His love for Nevada, as well as for his native North Carolina, always remained strong.  Admitted to the Nevada State Bar on May 4, 1871,[2] Kittrell began serving as Nevada’s Attorney General in 1875.

Election of 1874

Elected as Nevada’s fourth Attorney General on November 3, 1874, Kittrell (Democrat) received 9,050 (50.5%) of the 17,906 votes cast, and Moses Tebbs (Republican) received 8,856 (49.5%) votes.[3]

Election of 1876

In this election, Kittrell became the first Attorney General to lose re-election to office.

Office Administration and Duties

Kittrell had no deputies or other support staff according to the Nevada Attorney General’s budgets for the 1875–1877 and 1877–1879 state biennial fiscal periods:

1875–1877 Budget

$7,000

 

$7,000

Attorney General’s Salary

 

 

Office expenses came from an appropriation “[f]or a current expense appropriation, to defray the telegraphic, postage, and contingent expenses of the several state officers, Supreme Court, and State Library, to be expended under the direction of the Lieutenant Governor, State Controller, and Secretary of State, $10,000”

 

1877–1879 Budget

$7,200

 

$7,200

Attorney General’s Salary

 

 

Office expenses came from an appropriation “[f]or a current expense appropriation, to defray the telegraphic, postage, and contingent expenses of the several state officers, Supreme Court, and State Library, to be expended under the direction of the Lieutenant Governor, State Controller, and Secretary of State, $10,000”

In addition to his regular duties as Attorney General, state statute required Kittrell to perform other duties and serve as a member of the Nevada Board of Examiners, Board of State Prison Commissioners, Parole Board, and Board of Directors for the Nevada State Library.  He also provided oversight to the various toll road franchises, granted in the Washoe City, Carson City, Virginia City, Steamboat, and Dayton areas.

Kittrell also served as a member of the Board of Commissioners.[4]  The board administered payments and the accrued interest from Nevada state bonds issued in 1864, 1865, and 1866 to finance the creation of Nevada’s state government.


[1] Nevada Historical Quarterly, Vol. XXVI, Winter 1983, Number 4, p. 293.
[2] Nevada Reports, Number 22, p. 12.
[3] Political History of Nevada, p. 206, p. 356.
[4] Statutes of Nevada, 1875, Chapter V, pp. 48–49.

    Page Last Updated:3/7/2016