United States Department of Commerce and Labor

Seal of the U.S. Department of Commerce and Labor

The United States Department of Commerce and Labor was a short-lived Cabinet department of the United States government, which was concerned with controlling the excesses of big business.

It was created on February 14, 1903, during the administration of Theodore Roosevelt. Investigations were the province of its Bureau of Corporations. The department was renamed the Department of Commerce on March 4, 1913, and its bureaus and agencies specializing in labor were transferred to the new Department of Labor. The Bureau of Corporations was spun off as an independent agency in 1915, the Federal Trade Commission

The United States Secretary of Commerce and Labor was the head of the department. The secretary was a member of the President's Cabinet. Corresponding with the division of the department in 1913, the Secretary's position was divided into separate positions of Commerce and Labor.

In 2011, in response to federal budget-cutting efforts, Senator Richard Burr (R-NC), sponsored Senate Bill 1116, a proposal to re-combine two departments as the "Department of Commerce and the Workforce".[1] To date no action on this proposal has been taken beyond referral to committee.[2]

List of Secretaries of Commerce and Labor



No. Portrait Name State of residence Took office Left office President(s)
1 George B. Cortelyou New York February 18, 1903 June 30, 1904 Theodore Roosevelt
2 Victor H. Metcalf California July 1, 1904 December 16, 1906
3 Oscar S. Straus New York December 17, 1906 March 5, 1909
4 Charles Nagel Missouri March 6, 1909 March 4, 1913 William Howard Taft

Notes and references

External links

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