"Now, tonight’s keynote speaker needs no introduction from me. He’s been mentioned as a future president—and if you don’t believe me, just read his daddy’s newspapers—ladies and gentlemen, I give you the senator for New York, Henry Shaw!"

Senator Henry Shaw Junior (d. 6 December, 1926[2]) was an American No-Maj who served as a United States senator from New York during the 1920s.[3] He was the son of newspaper magnate Henry Shaw Senior.[4] He had at least one younger brother Langdon Shaw.

Henry Show Jr died on 6 December, 1926 after being attacked by Credence Barebone's Obscurus. This was the result of a demeaning comment he made in regards to Credence. He died at a fundraising dinner for his supporters at New York City Hall.


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Henry Shaw Jr during a meeting with his father Henry Shaw Snr

Henry Shaw Junior was born in the United States in or before 1890.[1] His father was a newspaper magnate, and he had at least one sibling, a younger brother, Langdon.[4] Shaw was elected to the United States Senate in 1920.[5] As such, he was his father's pride and joy, while his brother was seen as a disappointment.[4]

President 1926

Henry Shaw Jr: "Langdon. Just listen to Father and go... And take the freaks with you."
Langdon: "This is Father’s office, not yours, and I’m sick of this every time I walk in here..."
— Henry Shaw Jr has a disscusion with his brother[src]
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Henry Shaw handed the leaflet back to Credence Barebone and calls him a freak

In 1926, His younger brother Langdon Shaw brought Mary Lou Barebone from the New Salem Philanthropic Society and her adopted children, Credence, Chastity, Modesty to his father Henry Shaw Senior's office in Shaw Tower.

Langdon laid out a portfolio filled with a series of photographic evidence of witchcraft and told his father of his belief that "strange things were going on all over" New York" and that this was the work of Witchcraft, certain that he was giving him the scoop of the century. Henry Shaw Jr and his father both dismissed Langdon's claims out of hand. Mary Lou was interested in garnishing the support and influence of his newspaper company and his elder son's re-election platform. Henry Shaw Senior refused and asked the Barebone family to leave. While they departing, Mary Lou's adopted son Credence dropped a leaflet which Henry Shaw Jr handed back to him, unashamedly calling his family freaks.[6]


"Suddenly something explodes forth from underneath the organ. Something huge and bestial, although invisible, is soaring down the hall — tables fly, people are thrown, lights smash, and people scream as it carves a line toward the stage. Senator Shaw is thrown backward against his own poster, raised up high, suspended for a moment in midair, before being brought down with a violent crash — dead."
—Henry Shaw gets attacked by Credence's Obscurus[src]
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Obscurus attack in the Fundraising Dinner Hall

While running for re-election, Henry Shaw Jr held a fundraising dinner for his supporters at New York City Hall, which was also picketed by members of the New Salem Philanthropic Society.[4][7][8][9]. When Henry Shaw Jr was in the middle of his speech, he was interrupted by a strange, haunted noise coming from the organ pipes at the end of the room; and as he recommenced, the strange noise got louder, prompting the guests to look around for the source of the disruption and worriedly start to mutter to each other. Suddenly, the chandeliers shattered and the lights went out, just as a huge and bestial rush of wind burst forth from beneath the organ. The Obscurus of Credence Barebone soared across the hall, sending tables flying and throwing people around as it carved a line toward the stage where Shaw was still standing. The force threw Shaw backwards against his poster, and then raised him up high where he was suspended for just a moment in midair before being thrown violently back down onto the stage, dead. He was attacked by by Credence's Obscurus as revenge for calling him a freak during the Second Salemers' visit to his father's office.

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Henry Shaw lifeless body after the attack of Credence's Obscurus

After the attack, a magical image of Henry Shaw Jr's body was displayed in the Pentagram Office of MACUSA during a meeting of the delegation from the International Confederation of Wizards. Newton Scamander observed the body and realised that he was killed by an Obscurus from the marks covering his face.[10]

Personality and traits

"Here you go, freak — why don’t you put that in the trash where you all belong."
—Henry Shaw Jr cruelly mocks Credencec Barebone[src]

Henry Shaw Jr was a charismatic and successful politician. He was often arrogant and could also be quite cruel to those he considered "freaks". Shaw also dismissed his younger brother Langdon's claims and other people's beliefs such as the Barebone family. He appeared to enjoy his success in politics, as he was running for re-election.

Behind the scenes

  • Henry Shaw Jr is portrayed by Josh Cowdery in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.[3]
  • In the real world, the Senator from New York in 1926 was James Wolcott Wadsworth, Jr of the Republican Party, who had been in office since 1915 but was defeated for re-election that year by Democrat Robert F. Wagner. Unlike his fictional counterpart, Wadsworth Jr was vocally against Prohibition, having even voted against the Eighteenth Amendment when it was before the Senate in 1919.
  • The above doean't translate into reality. Senator Henry Shaw is probably based on New York City Mayor James Walker who was also a NYS Senator up till 1926. The movie and real life resemblance between the actor playing Sen. Shaw, Josh Cowdery, and the real life state Senator and NYC Mayor "Beau James" (Bob Hope did the Beau James movie about Walker) of the 1920's is unmistakeable. Were movie producers looking for historical resemblences? They acknowledge the deliberate resemblance between Ezra Miller's Credence Barebone and silent movie star Buster Keaton, John Voight's newspaper tycoon Henry Shaw Senior is probably based on newspaper media star William Randolph Hearst who also collected old castles and mansions that he refurbished losing most of his fortune as a result. John Voight's movie character, Henry Shaw Senior gave a fund raiser for his son the Senator resulting in the son's violent death. The real life John Voight gave the intro speech for Trump's inaugural. Fictional history never repeats but sometimes rhymes with reality. Mayor Jimmy Walker was "relieved" of his position by future President and then NYS Gov. Franklin D Roosevelt in 1929, year of the Great Depression.


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 Article I, Section 3 of the United States Constitution, which sets the necessary qualifications for a senator, stipulates they must be at least thirty years old. Shaw was an incumbent senator running for re-election in 1926, meaning, at minimum, he was thirty-six-years old at the time, as U. S. senators serve six-year terms.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (film) (see this image)
  3. 3.0 3.1 'Fantastic Beasts' film casts Jon Voight's son, Senator Henry Shaw, Seraphina rumoured at SnitchSeeker
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 "Full Character Descriptions" from
  5. Shaw was running for re-election to the United States Senate in 1926. U. S. senators serve six-year terms, meaning that he would have been previously elected into office in 1920, although it's possible this wasn't his first term.
  6. {FB|S|38}}
  7. "Video: Scene Being Filmed (UPDATED)" from
  8. "Pottermore Set Report #3" from
  9. "Will It Be JK Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts – Or Fascist Beasts?" from Bleeding Cool
  10. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay, Scene 60