1902 Encyclopedia > United States > Biographical Notes

United States
(Part 13)




SECTION I: HISTORY AND CONSTITUTION (cont.)

Part 13. Biographical Notes


The Presidents and Vice-Presidents of the United States

== TABLE ==

Biographical Notes

The following paragraphs contain a series of biographical notes on American public men, furnishing details of interest which could not without inconvenience have been incorporated in the foregoing continuous history.

Allen, Ethan, was born in Roxbury, Conn., Jan. 10, 1737. He removed about 1766 to Vermont, where he became a leader of the Vermonters, or "Green Mountain Boys," in their struggle against New York. In 1775 he was the leader of the party which surprised Ticonderoga. He was captured in 1775, sent to England, and not exchanged until 1778. He died at Burlington Vt., Feb. 12, 1789. He had published a number of somewhat eccentric pamphlets, either personal or attacks on Christianity. – See Spark’s American Biography, vol. I

Andrew, John Albion (1818-1867), governor of Massachusetts from 1861 to 1866, was born at Windham, Me., May 31, 1818. He became a graduate of Bowdoin College in 1837, and was admitted to the bar in Boston in 1840. He entered political life was a Whig, and the intensity of his anti-slavery convictions stood in his way until 1859, when he was sent to the State legilature. In 1860 he was elected governor. Foreseeing the coming struggle, he organized and equipped the militia of the State, and urged the other New England governor to do likewise. Lincoln’s call for troops was received at Boston, April 15; Andrew had volunteers in motion the next morning; on the afternoon of the 16th three regiments were ready; the Massachusetts Sixth left Boston on the 7th, fought its way through Baltimore on the 19th, and reached Washington the same day. All although the war, Andrew’s devotion to his duties was indefatigable, and it is to his influence that Massachusetts owes here place of pre-eminence in that great struggle. He died suddenly of apoplexy, October 30, 1867. P.W.. Chandler has written a memoir of Andrew, and A.S. Brown a sketch of his official life.

Arnold, Benedict, was born at Norwich, Conn., Jan. 3 1740. His disposition was unruly in his boyhood. When the revolutionary was broke out, he entered the army, and soon became a colonel. He was sent with a detachment through the Maine wilderness to assist Montgomery, and was severely wounded in the assault on Quebec in December 1775. He was discontented because his promotion was slow, and still more because he had not sufficient opportunity for pecuniary advantage. Distinguishing himself at Bemis, Geights and Stilwater, though then under arrest, he asked and obtained command of the post of West Point, the key to the Hudson river. He offered to betray this post of Clinton, but the negotiations were detected, and Clinton’s agent, Andre, was captured and hanged as a spy, while Arnold escaped to the British lines. He was given a rank in the British army corresponding to that which he had abandoned, and commanded two plundering expeditions. It was not easy to induce other British officers to serve with him, and he went to England, where he seems not to have fared much better. He died in London, June, 1801. His Life, in Spark’s American Biography, gives the usual American estimate of him; but a more apologetic biography, by a descendant, has recently been published.

Arthur, Chester, Alan (1830- 1886), president from 1881 to 1885, was born in Fairfiled, Vt. October 5, 1830, his father being a Baptish minister who had immigrated from Ireland. After graduating at Union College in 1848, he was a teacher for several years and was admitted to the bar in New York in 1853. He rapidly obtained repute as a lawyer, particularly by his management of the cases of fugitive slaves; and, as quartermaster-general of the State of New York during the first two years of the civil war, charged with the duty of arming, equipping, and transporting the troops of the State, he obtained a reputation even higher. He became an active political leader in the Republican organization of New York, and was appointed collector of the port by President Grant in 1871. refusing to abstain from active political work, he was removed in 1878 by President Hayes; and in 1880, when Garfield had been nominated by the Republican convention, Arthur was nominated for the vice-presidency, in order to propitiate the supporters of Grant. He was elected with Garfield in November and inaugurated in the following March, and became president when Garfield died (Sept. 19). He proved an exception to the rule that vice-presidnets succeeding to the office to president have failures. To him belongs the credit of a quiet dignified and successful adminsitartion of public affairs, and above all, the inception of the reform of the civil service system. He carried out the Pendleton Act for that purpose with honest good-will, and gave it an impetus which it is not likely ever to lose. He quieted the growing ill-feeling between his country and others as to South American affairs. The presence of British representatives at the hundredth anniversary of the surrender of a British army at Yorktown had a certain awkwardness, until the president’s tact and good feeling relieved the pressure by ordering that the ceremonies should close with a general salute to the British flag, as a special mark of American respect for the queen. He finishes his term with the high respect of all parties, and in the Republican convention of 1884 was the leading competitor for the nomination, which finally fell to Blaine. He died in New York city, November 18, 1886.

Bell, John, was born near Nashville, Tenn., Feb. 15, 1797, and died near the same place, Sept 10, 1869. He graduated at Nashville in 1814, became a lawyer, and served in the house of representatives, 1829041, and the senate, 1847-59, acting as secretary of war from March to October 1841. He was nominated for the presidency in 1860, and was defeated.

Benton, Thomas Hart (1782-1858), was born near Hillsboroguh, N.C., March 14, 1782. Removing to Tennessee in 1799, he studied law, was admitted to the bar, and entered the life of a frontier lawyer and politician. Andrew Jackson, then the leading figure of Nashville, made him his aide-decamp, and obtained for him the command of a Tennessee regiment. Quarrels and a street-fight in 1813, in which Jackson was nearly killed, made Tennessee an unpleasant residence for Benton, and, a after two years of service as lieutenant colonel of a United States regiment, he settled in St Louis, Mo. From 1821to 1851 he served as United States senator from Missouri. During all this period he was one of the most prominent members of the senate. He became a recognized leader of the Democratic party, and on the entrance of Jackson into national politics, he became one of his warmest supporters. Benton’s knowledge of Spanish land-law made him an authority on all subjects into which that question entered; and his sympathy with the feelings of the Western settlers made him their mouth piece on all such matters as the proposed annexation of Oregon. His pronounced aversion to all forms of paper currency procured him the popular name "old Bullion," in which he took great satisfaction. Benton was always a pronounced Union man, and, when the slavery struggle had gone far enough to make the thought of disunion a political possibility, his supremacy in Missouri was over. He was defeated, after forty ballots, in the attempt to return to the senate for a new term in 1851. He served in the house of representatives, 1853-55, but was defeated in the next election as well as in the election for governor in 1856. He died at Washington, April 10, 1858. He has left two works of political value, Thirty Years in the United States Senate (2 vols), and a most useful Abridgment of the Debates in Congress from 1789 until 1850 (16 vols.)- see Roosevelt’s Life of Benon, in the American Statesmen Series.

Boone, Daniel, born in Bucks county, Pa., Feb. 11, 1735, emigrated to North Carolina, penetrated the wilderness of Kentucky and began the settlement of that region, and died in Missouri, Sept. 20, 1820. Unlettered, but of strong native intelligence, simple honesty, courage, and coolness, he has become the type of his class.

Bragg, Braxton (c. 1815-1876), American officer and general in the Confederation service, was born in Warren County, N.C. about 1815. He graduated at West Point in 1837, served in Florida and elsewhere for several years, and so distinguished himself in the Mexican war, particularly at Buena Vista, as to reach the rank of lieutenant-colonel by brevet. He resigned and retired to private life in 1856, but entered the Confederate service at the outbreak of the civil war with the rank of brigading-general. He commanded at Pensacola, but was transferred to the west in 1862, soon reaching the full grade of general in command of the department of Mississippi. Just after Lee had begun his first attempt to invade the North in the east, Bragg began a similar attempt in the west. Passing to the east of the Union line in southern Tennessee, he moved northward into Kentucky, threatening Cincinnati, and remaining in Kentucky from August until October. The battle of Perryville (Oct. 8.) forced him to retreat into Tennessee, but he carried off enormous trains of captured property and booty. Returning late in the year towards Nashville, he met Rosecrans in the battle of Murfreesboro or Stone River (Dec. 31, 1862-Jan 2, 1863). It was very nearly a drawn battle, but Rosecrans held the ground, and slowly possession of the important point of Chattanooga during 1863. Following Bragg beyond it into Georgia, he was met and beaten in the battle of Chickamauga (Sept. 19-20, 1863) and Bragg, pursing in his turn, formed the siege of Chattanooga. Grant replaced Rosecrans, and beat Bragg in he battles of Lookout Mountain and Missionary Ridge (Nov. 23-25, 1863), relieving the Union army. Bragg was then succeeded by Johnson, and took little further active part in the war. The Confederate president, Davis retained Bragg at Richmond as military adviser. He died at Galveston, Texas, Sept. 27, 1876.

Breckinridge, John Cabell (1821-1875), vice-president of the United States from 1857 to 1861, was born near Lexington, Ky., Jan 21, 1821. He was admitted to the bear, served as major in the Mexican war, and was a Democratic member of the house of representative from 1851 to 1855. He was elected vice-president in 1856 by the Democrats. In 1860 he was nominated for the presidency by the Southern wing of the Democratic party, but was defeated. Elected United States senator, he took his seat at the special session of July 4, 1861, left it (Aug. 6) to enter the Confederate army, and was expelled from the senate Dec. 4. He served at Murfreesboro and Chicakmauga, and in the east, and in 1865 became he Confederate secretary of war For a time he was in Europe, but returned in 1868, and died May 17, 1875.

Buckingham, William Alfred (1804-1875), governor of Connecticut, was born in Lebanon, Conn., May 28, 1804. In 1858 he was elected governor, and served until 1866. He refused further re-election, and retired to private life until 1869, when the Republicans of his State sent him to the United States senate, where he remained until 1875, the year of his death. His energy and foresight, as the "war governor" of his State, did for Connecticut what Andrew’s did for Massachusetts.

Burnside, Ambrose Everett (1824-1881), general in the Federal army, was born at Liberty, Ind., May 23, 1824. After graduating at West Point in 1847, he served in the Mexican war and on frontier duty until 1853, when he resigned. For the years he as engaged in the manufacture of fire-arms in Rhode Island, and for the next three years in the management of the Illinois Central Railway Company. He entered the civil war as colonel of rhode Island volunteers, was given command of the land forces operating on the North Carolina coast, at Roanoke Island and elsewhere, and as major-general commanded the ninth corps of the army of the Potomac in the Antietam campaign. His management of the left wing in the final battle has been severely criticized by M’Clellan, on the ground of his slowness. When M’Clellan was relieved of the command of the army in November 1862, Burnside was made his successor. He undertook to follow the direct road to Richmond, across the Rappahannock and through Fredericksbrugh. He had hardly reached Falmouth opposite, Fredericksburgh, when Lee had begun his lines of defence on the hills behind Fredercisksburgh. Burnside’s army crossed the river Dec. 10-11, and Lee made the assault December 13. Franklin on the left broke through the Confederate lines, but could not hold his ground; Summer and Hooker led their men to the most dreadful slaughter of the war. On the night of the 15th of December the Union forces were withdrawn across the river, and Burnside resigned his command late in the following month, being succeeded by Hooker. Burnside served in the west during the year 1863, and commanded in ninth corps under Grant during the final Virginia campaigns. Re-entering civil life, he served as governor of Rhode Island,1 866-69, and at United States senator, from 1875 until his death in Rhode Island, September 13, 1881.

Burr, Aaron (1756-1836), vice-president of the United States from 1801 to 1805, was born at Newark, N.J. Feb. 6, 1756, being the son of rev. Aaron Burr, president of Princeton College, and grandson of Rev. Jonathan Edwards. He graduated at Princeton in 1772, served as an officer in the revolutionary army, becoming lieutenant-colonel, and in 1779 resigned and studied law. He began practice in New York, where the leading lawyers were disfranchises or under a cloud by reason of Toryism, and was successful almost at once, his leading competitor being Hamilton. He was a Republican United States senator, 1791-97, and introduced into the Republican party of his State that semi-military organization which now marks all successful parties. Presidential electors were then generally chosen by State legislatures, and Burr’s skilful management obtained a legislature in 1800 with a Republican majority. The Republican leaders at Washington at once named him as the candidate to be voted for with Jefferson. All the Republican electors voted for the two, giving them a majority of the electoral votes, 73 each. But this, as the constitution then stood (S 120), elected neither; the house of representatives was to choose between them. The house had a Federalist majority, and was dispose to make Burr president, in order to bank Jefferson and his party. It was not until the 36th ballot that Jefferson was chosen, and Burr never recovered his party’s confidence. He was not re-nominate din 1804; and in the same year he shot his great rival, Hamilton, in a duel near New York city. In 1807 he was tried for an expedition against Mexico, but was acquitted. For some years he lived abroad, but in 1812 he returned to New York city and resumed the practice of law. He died on Staten Island, N.Y. Sept. 14, 1836. Burr’s great ability, his influence over young men and over women, the immorality of his private life, the misfortunes of his career and the stoical patience with which he bore them, have made him a remarkable figure in American history. He is buried at Princeton, N.J. – See Parton’s Life of Burr, Knapp’s Life of Burr, Davis’s Memoir of Burr, and Private Journal of Burr.

Colfax, Schuyler, vice-president of the United States from 1869 to 1873, was born in New York city, March 23, 1823. At the age of the thirteen he removed to South Bend, Ind., studied law, became a newspaper editor, and entered political life as a Whig, afterwards a Republican. Defeated in the Congressional election of 1851, he was successful at the next, and served in the house of representatives from 1855 to 1869. He was speaker of the house from 1863 to 1869. In 1868 he was nominated by the Republicans for the office of vice president, and was elected, serving until 1873. He died Jan. 13, 1885. See martin’s Life of Colfax (1868).

Crawford, William Harris, American statesman, was born in Amherst county, Va., Feb. 24, 1772, but removed to Georgia while still a boy. He was admitted to the bar, served in the State legislature, 1803-7, in the United States senate, 1807- 13, as minister to France, 1813-15, as secretary of war, 1815-16, and as secretary of the treasury, 1816-25. He was one of the leading aspirants to the presidency in 1816, but Monroe obtained the nomination by a small majority. As the end of Monroe’s second term approached, it was thought that Crawford would certainly be his successor. In 1823 he was sticken with paralysis; but his friends endeavored to conceal his condition, and pressed him for the caucus nomination in 1824. He obtained it, but it did him little service. Indeed, the struggle really put an end to the Congressional caucus as a nominating body. On his defeat he retired from national politics, serving as State judge in his own State from 1827 until he died at Elberton, Ga., Sept. 15, 1834. See J. B. Cobb’s Miscellanies, p. 131.





Garfield, James Abram (1831-1881), president of the United States in 1881, was born at Orange, O., Nov 19. 1831. His father died in 1833, leaving Garfield’s mother to support four children, of whom the future president was the youngest. He learned the trade of a carpenter, earning some little additional money to working as a wood-chopper and as a driver on the canal. At the age of eighteens, he entered a village seminary, working at his trade and at odd jobs for his own support. After preparing himself for college, he carried himself in like manner through Williams College, graduating in 1856. He then became a professor in, and after one year, president of, Hiram College, o., where he remained until 1861. During this period he studied law, and was admitted to the bar. He had also become a recognized leader of the Republican party of the State, being elected to the State senate for 1860-61. Entering the army as colonel of an Ohio regiment in 1861, he served in Kentucky and Tennessee, soon becoming brigadier-general and chief of staff to General Rosecrans. At Chickamauga he particularly distinguished himself, riding to Thomas’s head quarters after the retreat of the rest of the army, and taking part in the gallant stand made by "the Rock of Chickamauga." For his services he was promoted to the rank of major-general. He resigned in December 1863, to take his seat in the house of representatives, to which he had been elected by his district in northern Ohio. This seat he never really left. He was re-elected steadily for the remainder of his life, his last term closing with the date of his inauguration as president. Just before this last event in his career, he was elected United States senator by the legislature of Ohio, but never took his seat. From his entrance to Congress in 1863 he was one of the most prominent Republican members; and in 1875, when the republicans became for the first time since 1860 a minority in the lower House, he became their recognized leader there. In the Republican convention of 1880 he was ultimately nominated by 399votes out of 756, and in November he was elected by an electoral vote of 214 to 155 for Hancock. He had always protested against the system which made the advice of administration senators the controlling factor in appointments to office; and yet, from the moment of his inauguration, he found himself entangled in a conflict about appointments with the senators from New York. In the midst of the newspaper excitement on this subject, a disappointed office-seeker shot the president in the Baltimore and Potomac railway station, July 2, 1881. after lingering through a Washington summer, he was removed (Sept. 6) to Long Branch, where he died on sept. 19.

Grant, Ulysses Simpson (1822-1885), lieutenant-general in the United States army and president of the United States from 1869 to 1877, was born at Point Pleasant, O., April 27, 1822. He had but a slight education in his early youth, but graduated at West Point in 1843. He served in the Mexican war with credit, and in routine service until 1854, when he resigned,having then the rank of captain. His attempts to engage in framing near St Louis and in the leather trade at Galena, III., were not successful; and, when the civil war broke out, he was the last man whom his brother officers would have picked out as the coming hero of the war. With some difficulty he obtained a commission as colonel of an Illinois regiment, but was soon advanced to the rank of brigadier- general, having his head quarters of Cairo, III. From this point he made incursion into the hostile territory, his first serious affair being at Belmont, Mo., Nov. 7, 1861, which was at best a drawn battle. The Confederate line ran through southern Kentucky, and was penetrated by the Tennessee river, of whose mouth, Grant had possession. Estimating the opportunity correctly, he obtained, permission, with much difficulty, to attempt to secure control of the whole Tennessee river. Flag officer Foote, with seven gunboats and a number of transports, conveyed Grant’s force up the river and captured Fort Henry, which commanded the point where the Confederate line crossed the Tennessee river (Feb. 6, 1862). A distance of but seven miles separated the rifle-pits around this fort from those of Fort Donelson, which commanded the point where the Confederate line crossed the Cumberland river. Marching overland with about 15,000 men, Great invested Fort Donelson, and began the first Federal siege of the war. The surrender of the fort (Feb. 16) broke up the Confederate line and forced it back into southern Tennessee. Grant was more popular with the general public than with his superiors, and his experience with them was so unpleasant that he asked to be relieved. Matters were patched up, and he was allowed to push southward. Here the battle of Pittsburgh Landing, in which Grant seems to have been taken by surprise, intensifies the doubts his superiors had of his capacity, and he was some time under a cloud, Halleck assuming command himself, and really retiring Gram for some months. A fully counterbalancing result of the battle was the establishment of perfect sympathy between Grant and Sherman, who had shared its dangers and what odium had come out of it. Grant himself has written that, in the Mexican war, his service "gave no indication that he would ever he equal to the command of a brigade," and that in 1861 he "had never looked at a copy of tactics since his graduation." His training for supreme command was now completed, and it had qualified him for the defence of Corinth, to which allhis subsequent successes may be directly traced. Left there almost in isolation, and exposed to the attacks of all the forces which the confederates chose to bring against him, his successful battles of Iuka (Sept. 19, 1862) and Corinth (Oct. 3-5) left him master of the route along the Mississippi. In January 1863 Grant and Sherman succeeded in taking the west bank of the Mississippi to a point opposite Vicksburgh. Falling to reduce the city from this point, Grant crossed the river below Vicksburgh in April, and began the remarkable campaign which ended with the surrender of Pemberton. It showed that he had strategic ability as well as fighting power, and that he was able to discern the characteristics of his opponents and to calculate on their probable errors, and it gave him an well as a popular respect which he never lost. Followed by the victories of Loukout Mountain and Missionary Ridge, it made him the acknowledged leader of the United States armies and his appointment as lieutenant-general and commander-in-chief was a foregone conclusion. When Grant assumed command in Virginia in March 1864, Lee’s unaccustomed tendency to maintain a strict defensive showed his underlying consciousness that he had before him at last a man who was ready and willing to answer an attack by a counter-attack. Grants military ability had now reached its highest development: he handled his 120,000 men with as complete control at he had shown with his 15,000 at Donelson. It is not probable that anything but the vigor and intensity of Grant’s operations could have met successfully the problem offered to any commander by Lee behind entrenchments arranged by himself and manned by the army of northern Virginia, or could have reduced that army to the condition which it presented in the winter of 1864-65. The end of the war and the death of President Lincoln left Grant the foremost man of the North and West, and it was really inevitable that he should be elected president in 1808. From the moment of Lee’s surrender the people had shown a disposition to put upon his shoulders any work which called for prompt completion. The Republican leaders relied on him to hold all that had been secured by the war until the Congressional plan of reconstruction should be fully carried out, and the did the work as probably no other man could have done it. His public life is really the history of the country for the eight years after 1869, and its errors were largely the result of the intrusion of some of his best personal qualities into it. The rule in the civil service still was that of appointment by favor of the political leaders of the dominant party; Grant, bewildered by the constant and tremendous pressure for appointments, undoubtedly selected some men who were no credits to his administration; when the appointment had been made, his own bitter experience of unjust criticism led him to look with suspicion on any accusation against those whom he had appointed; and his military habits of unquestioning obedience gave him a tendency to expect the same thing from men in politics, and to regard independence as a sort of treason, disqualifying the man guilty of it for any useful criticism. His second term was therefore filled with scandals which are likely to overshadow the solid and enduring achievements of his first. Retiring to private life, he found needed rest in a tour of the world; he was, however, a candidate for the Republican nomination for the presidency in 1880, and engaged in business in which he had no experience, and in which he lost his all. Attacked by an incurable disease, he spent his last few months of life in the preparation of his autobiography, knowing that its sale would be so large as to put his family out of reach of pecuniary distress. He died at Mount M’Gregor, N.Y. July 23, 1885.

Hancock, Winfield Scott (1824-1886), American officer, was born in Montgomery county, Pa., Feb. 14, 1824. He graduated at West Point in 1844, served with credit in Scott’s campaign in Mexico and on frontier duty until 1861, when he held the rank of captain. Having been appointed brigadier-general of volunteers in 1861, he served in the army of the Potomac throughout its existence. For distinguished services on the peninsula and at South Mountain and Antietam, he was given a division and the rank of major-general, and in 1863 he was placed in command of the second corps for his services at Fredericksburgh and Chancellorsville. His crowning glory was won at Gettysburgh. Reynolds fell on the first day, and Hancock was sent forward by Meade to arrange the line until the commander could arrive. On the second and third days Hancock commanded the left center, on Cemetery Ridge, where, just in the moment of victory, he was severely wounded. He received the thanks of Congress, and returned to the command of his corps early in 1864, in time to take part in Grant’s campaigns of that year. He distinguished himself again and again at the Wilderness, at Spotsylvania, and in the Cold Harbor and Petersbrugh operations. At the end of the war he commanded various departments, having been made a major-general in the regular army. From September 1867 to March 1808 he commanded the department of the Gulf, under the Reconstruction Acts; and certain orders issued by him, particularly those of Nov. 29 and Dec. 5. 1867, declaring that the military power was meant only to uphold, not to control, the civil power, and declining to exercise arbitrary powers, were so satisfactory to the Democratic party that is 1880 it nominated him for the presidency. He was defeated by Garfield, but retained his position as senior major-general of the army, and the warm regard of the country. He died at Governor’s Island, N.Y. Feb. 9, 1886.

Hendricks, Thomas Andrews (1819-1885), vice-president of the United States in 1885, was born in Muskingum county, 0., Sept. 7, 1819. He removed with his father to Shelby county, Ind. In 1822, graduated at Hanover College in 1841, and was admitted to the bar in 1843. He was a member of the State legislature in 1848-49, a Democratic member of the house of representatives, 1851-55, and commissioner of the land office, 1855-59. He served as United States senator, 1863-69, and as governor of Indiana, 1873077. In 1876 he was nominated for the office of vice-president by the Democratic, but was defeated. In 1876, 1880, and 1884 he was a prominent candidate for the nomination for the presidency; and in 1884, when Cleveland was nominated, he consented to take the nomination for the vice-presidency, and was elected. He died at Indianapolis, Ind., Nov. 25, 1885.

Hood, John Bell (1831-1879), American officer in the Confederate service, was born at Owingsville, Ky., June 29, 1831. He graduated at West Point in 1853, and continued to serve in the United States army until 1861, when he entered the Confederate service. Rising rapidly from a first lieutenancy to the command of the Texas brigade, he distinguished himself on the peninsula, in the seven days’ battles at Antietam, and at Gettysburgh, where he lost the use of an arm. He was now a major-general, and was sent to command a division in Bragg’s army. He took a leading part in the battle of Chickamauga, where he lost a leg, but returned to duty within six months . He commanded a corps during Johnston’s retreat before Sherman, in the early months of 1864; and, when Davis had decided on removing Johnston, Hood was appointed to the command of the army. He accepted reluctantly, and his position was not a pleasant one. He succeeded a general in whom the army had confidence; he was to reverse that general’s policy, and he was to carry out a plan of campaign which had been prepared for him by the Confederate president. His obedience was painfully accurate. He assumed the offensive as soon as he took command, fought several severe battles, and soon found himself under necessity of evacuating Atlanta (Sept. 2, 1864). Sherman had outflanked him; and the Confederate administration came to the desperate resolution of ordering him to move west and then north into Tennessee. He was checked at Franklin, where he lost many of his best officers; and in the final battle of Nashville (Dec. 15) his army was completely beaten, and almost lost its organization. The command of its remnants was transferred to General Richard Taylor, and Hood retired from active service. He died of yellow fever at New Orleans, Aug. 30, 1879.

Hull, Isaac (1775-1843), naval officer, was born at Derby, Conn, March 9, 1775. In 1798 he became lieutenant in the new navy created by Congress during the difficulties with France. He served with credit in the West Indies and Mediterranean, and, on the outbreak of war in 1812, was captain of the frigate "Constitution." By skillful seamanship he escaped the close pursuit of five British vessels, and on Aug. 19 he captured the British frigate "Guerriere" off Newfoundland, after a conflict in which the "Guerriere" was so severely cut up that Hull was forced to burn her. A gold medal was given him by Congress. He died at Philadelphia, Feb. 13, 1843.

Knox, Henry, major-general in the American revolutionary army, was born at Boston July 25, 1750. Beginning life as a bookseller, he commanded an independent company in Boston, and was made an engineer and artillery officer by Washington at the opening of the revolution. Under his charge the artillery arm of the service came to be essential value. He was made secretary of war in 1785, and Washington, on becoming president in 1789, gave him the same office under the new Government. He resigned in 1794, and retired to private life in Maine. He died at Thomaston, Me., Oct. 25, 1806- See Drake’s Life of Knox (1874).

Lawrence, James (1781-1813), captain in the United States navy, was born at Burlington, N.J., Oct 1, 1781, and entered the navy as a midshipman in 1798. He commanded the "Hornet" in he capture of the "Peacock," Feb. 24, 1813. Placed in command of the frigate "Chesapeake," he acceped the challenge of Captain Broke of the "Shamon" to a single battle, off Boston harbor. The "Chesapeake" was captured, and Lawrence, mortally wounded, died June 6, 18134. – See Irving’s Spanish Papers, vol. ii.





McClellan, George Briton (1826-1885), general in the United States army, was born at Philadelphia, Dec. 3, 1826. He graduated at West Point in 1846, served in the Mexican war with such ability as to win the brevet of captain, and attained full rank as captain in 1855. His services until 1857 were mainly scientific, with the exception of a military report on the organization of European armies in 1856, the result of a commission from the Government to follow the progress of the Crimean War. In 1857 he resigned and entered the service of a Western railway, becoming its president. At the outbreak of the civil war he was engaged by Ohio as major-general commanding her volunteers, and was soon given the same rank in the United States army by President Lincoln. It felt to McClellan to cross into West Virginia and begin the campaign there, which he did during the early summer, the campaign ending with the surrender of the Confederate forces at Rich Mountain and the expulsion of the opposing armies from his department, on July 14, 1861. The sudden and brilliant success, followed almost immediately by the collapse of the Manassas campaign against Richmond, brought M’Clellan into notice as the most likely leader to restore public confidence in the army of the Potomac. He was called to Washington, given command of the army, and, when Scott retired, was made commander of all the armies until March 1862, when his command was reduced again to the army of the Potomac. The winter of 1861-62 was spent in organizing his new army, and in the spring he was at last almost forced, by public outcry and the impatience of the administration, to attempt the task of wielding the weapon which he had created. Following what seems now the most feasible method of attack on Richmond, McClellan appears to have begun with little confidence in the administration, and it was not long before the administration lost confidence in him. His campaign on the peninsula is historical; but the time involved should be taken carefully into account in estimating McClellan’s abilities. It was on Sept. 2, that he was recalled and given command of "all the troops for the defence of the capital." He found the armies in almost complete confusion; he organized and united them, marched them through Maryland to its northern border, attacked Lee’s rear so vigorously at South Mountain as to force him to turn and fight, and defeated him after a two days’ battle; and all this work was done in fifteen days, Sept. 2-17. He was removed, however, Nov. 7, 1862, for slowness in pursuing Lee, and Burnside became his successor. McClellan was nominated for the presidency in 1864, and had much difficulty in reconciling the peace platform his party with his own feelings. Defeated by Lincoln, he retired to private business as a civil engineer, in which he was successful. He was elected governor of New Jersey in 1877, serving 1878-81. He died at Orange Mountain, N.J. Oct. 29, 1885. The literature in attack and defence of his military reputation is voluminous; for his own version of his career see McClellan’s Own Story.

Marcy, William Learned (1786-1857), was born at Sturbridge, Mass., Dec. 2, 1786. He graduated at Brown University in 1808, was admitted to the bar in 1810, and began practice at Troy, N.Y.. He soon became a leading Democratic politician, and one of the "Albany regency" which was supposed to control the action of the party in New York State. He was United States senator in 1831-32, and during his term he incidentally made use of the phrase so frequently afterwards heard, "To the victor belong the spoils." He resigned to become governor of New York, 1833-39. He was secretary of war under Polk, 1845-49, and secretary of state under Pierce, 1853-57. As secretary of state he conducted with success the Koszta case in 1854, involving a collision with Austria on the subject of the right of expatriation. All his political leaning were to that branch of the Democratic party in New York which made the strength of the new Republican party in 1856, and he would have been it natural leader if he had followed his own convictions on the Kansas Nebraska bill. He hesitated, and other men took his place. He diet at Ballston Spa. N.Y. July 4, 1857- See Jenkins’s Governors of New York.

Mason, George (1726-1792), member of the Federal convention of 1787, was born in Fairfax county, Va., in 1726. He served in the Virginia convention in 1775, and drafted its Declaration of Rights and Plan of Government. His most compsicuous service was in the Federal convention of 1787, of which he was a member. He took part in most of the debates, and exerted a strong influence on the decision of almost every question before the convention. Some of his strongest utterance were on the subject of slavery, and his language on one occasion (Aug. 22) might have served as a model to an anti-slavery orator of later times. He was dissatisfied with the constitution, and opposed its reatification. He died Oct.7 1792.

Meade, George Gordon (1815-1872), general in the United States army, was born in Cadiz, Spain where his father was an agent of the United States navy, Dec. 30, 1815. He graduated at West Point in 1835, and, after serving but one year in the army, resigned to begin practice as a civil engineer. He was frequently employed by the Government, and re-entered its military service in 1842. he served with distinction on the staffs of Taylor and Scott in the Mexican war, and in scientific work. At the outbreak of the civil war the placed in command of a brigade of volunteers, soon rising to the command of a division, and joining his fortunes permanently to those of the army of the Potomac. He led his division through the seven days’ battles, being severely wounded at Glendale, through the Antietam campaign, and at Fredericksburgh, where he particularly distinguished himself. At Chancellorsville he commanded the 5th corps; and when Hooker resigned the command of the army, and while the army itself was in hasty movement northward to check Lee’s invasion of the North in 1863, Meade was appointed to the command. He accepted it with the greatest reluctance, and altogether from a sense of duty. He had inclined to fight on the line of Pipe Creek, to the south of Gettysburgh; but Reynolds fell into collissionwith Lee’s advance at Gettysburgh, other corps hurried to support, and Gettysbrugh became historical. When Grant assumed general command in 1864, Meade continued to command the army of the Potomac under him, and mutual good-feeling them to maintain this delicate relation without friction, and with the best results. At the close of the war, being major-general in the regular army, he commanded the military division of the Atlantic until his death at Philadelphia. Nov. 6, 1872.

Montogomery, Richard, was born near Raphoe, Ireland, Dec. 2, 1736, and died in the assault on Quebec, Dec. 31, 1775. He served in the British army from 1754 to 772, when he retired, emigrated to America, and settled in New York marrying the daughter of R.R. Livingston. He was appointed a brigadier-general in the American army in 1775, and, for his services in Canada, was made a major-general the same year.

Morgan, Edwin Dennison, governor of New York, was born at Washington, Mass., Feb. 8, 1811. After a successful career as a merchant in hardford, Conn, and New York city, he served in the New York State senate, 1850-53, and was chairman of the Republican national Committee , 1856-64. Elected governor of New Uork in 1858, he served through the year 1862, supervising the raising and equipment of about 220,000 soldiers. He was United States senator, 1863-69. He died Feb. 14, 1883.

Morton, Oliver Perry (1823-1877), one of the leaders of the Republican party, was born in Wayne county Inc., Aug. 4, 1823. He was admitted to the bar in 1847, and was elected a circuit judge in 1852. He had been Democrat, but became a Republican in 1855, and was the Republican candidate for the governorship in 1856. He was defeated, and in 1860 was nominated for he office of lieutenant-governor, with the understanding that the governorship candidate was to be sent to the United States senate, if possible. This arrangement took effect, and Morton was left to fill the office of governor throughout the civil war. He was active and successful in raising troops for the support of the Federal Government, and bold, almost to recklessness, in his means of action. He knew, or at least believed, that his political opponents in the State were determined to support the Confederacy by refusing to supply any more troops to the Federal Government; and the meeting of a hostile legislature in 1863 brought matters to a head. The Republicans left the legislature, thus leaving their opponents without a quorum; the governor ordered money for war expenses to be borrowed on the credit of the State; the Democratic attorney-general and the State Supreme Court held that this was illegal, but the indomitable governor borrowed the money on his personal responsibility, and managed the State government without a legislature. The borrowed money was afterwards repaid by the State. In 1866 he was elected to the United States senate, and remained till his death, taking a prominent part in every debate, and exercising a strong influence on the party policy. He introduced the resolution for the repeal of the twenty-second joint rule, which had governed the court of the electoral votes since 1865. He died at Indianapolis, Nov. 1, 1877.

Pinckney, Charles (1758-1822), American statesman, was born at Charleston, S.C. March 9, 1758. He was admitted to the bar in 1779, was at delegate to the Continental Congress, 1777-78 and 1784-87; a delegate to the Federal convention of 1787; governor of South Carolina, 1789-92 and 1796-98; United States senator (Democrat), 1797-1801; minister to Spain, 1803-5; governor of South Carolina 1806-8; member of the State legislature, 1810-14; and member of the house of representatives, 1819-21. He died at Charleston, Feb. 25, 1822.

Picnkney, Charles Cotesworth (1746-1825), born at Charleston, S.C. Feb. 25, 1746, and died at the same place, Aug. 16, 1825). He was educated at oxford and the Middle Temple, served with distinction in the American revolutionary army, was one of the envoys to France in 1797, and was the Federalist candidate for the presidency in 1804 and 1808.

Pulaski, Casimir, Count, born in Lithuania, March 4, 1747, joined in the insurrection of 1769, escaped to Turkey in 1772, and was induced by Franklin to emigrate to America in 1777. he served in the battles of Brandywine and Germatown, receiving the rank of brigadier-general of his gallantry, and was placed in command of the cavalry. Forming a separate corps, known as Pulaski’s legion, he went to the South, where he commanded the cavalry in the assault on Savannah. He was mortally wounded, and died Oct. 11, 1780- - see Spark’s Life of Pulaski.

Putnam, Israel, was born at Salem, Mass., Jan 7. 1718, removing to Pomfret Conn., in 1739. Courage, strong will, and knowledge of men rather than of books soon made him a leader among his neighbors; and his shooting of a wolf by torch-light in a cavern in which she had sought refuge has almost become a nursery story. in the French and Indian war he became one of the most renowned of the "rangers" or partisan soldiers, who fought the Indians with their own weapon; and at the end of the war he had reached the rank of lieutenant –colonel of the Connecticut troops. At the outbreak of the revolutionary war, one of the four major-generals’ commissions was given to Putnam. He was an active leader at Bunker hill, commanded at New York, and in the battle of Long Island and was put in charge of the Hudson river defences in 1777, being the first to see the strategic importance of West Point. He died at Brooklyn, Conn., May 19, 1790.- See Lives by Cutler, Humphreys, and Peabody.

Schuyler, Philip, American general, was born at Albany, N.Y. Nov. 20, 1733. He was of an old and wealthy Dutch family, and in early manhood became a leader in the affairs of the colony of New York. He reached the rank of major in the French and Indian war, and the beginning of the revolutionary struggle was made one of the American major-generals. He took part in the expedition against Canada in 1775, but ill-health compelled him to retire, He took the leading in preparing to meet Burgoyne’s expedition in 1778; but troops had to be called in from other States, and he was subjected to jealousies which thwarted him at every step. Nevertheless his arrangements were so complete that he had really checkmated Burgoyne before Congress superseded him in the command by the appointment of Gates, who reaped all the glory which should have accrued to Schuyler. Retiring from the army, he served for three years in the Continental Congress, and in the United States senate, 1789091 and 1797-98. He died at Albany, Nov. 18, 1804.- See his Life and Times, by Lossing.

Seymour, Horatio, governor of New York, was born at Pompey, N.Y., May 31, 1810. He was admitted to the bar in 1832, but never practiced law, having a large private property. He soon became a leader of the Democratic party of the State, serving three terms in the State legislature after 1842, one of them as speaker. He was elected governor in 1852. In 1862 he was nominated again, and his success alarmed the national administration with a fear that the great State of New York would now be lukewarm or unfriendly. He proved to be one of the best of the "war governors," active, zealous, and prompt in raising and forwarding men and supporting the war, though he was accused of adopting temporizing measures with the draft mob in New York city in July 1863. He was nominated fro the presidency in 1868, but was defeated by Grant and then retired from public life. He died at Utica, N.Y. Feb. 17, 1886.- See Croly’s Life of Seymour and M’Cabe’s Life of Seymour (1868).

Steuben, Friedrich Wilhelm August Heinrich Ferdinand, Baron Von, was born at Magdeburg, Prussia, Nov. 15, 18730. Entering the army at fourteen, he rose to be adjutant-general and staff-officer to Frederick the Greta. After his retirement from active Deane induced him to go to America, where he was made major-general and inspector-general. He rendered eminent service by giving the army its first systematic drill. In this department he was the most important accession which the American army received from Europe. He settled as a farmer on land in what is now Steuben county, N.Y. given him by the State, and died there Nov. 28,. 1794. – See his Life by Kapp, Bowen’s Life in Spark’s American Biography, and Greene’s German Element in the War of American Independence.

Sumter, Thomas, was born in Virginia in 1734, and died near Camden, S.C. June 1, 1832. He removed to South Carolina when a boy, and entered the American array as lieutenant colonel in 1776. When the British had apparently overrun the State he kept up the struggle, retreating, when hard pressed, to the swamps of the interior. He was made brigadier –general, and thanked by Congress. He was a representative for South Carolina from 1789 to 1793 and from 1797 to 1801, United States senator from 1801 to 1810, and minister to Brazil from 1810 to 1811.

Taney, Roger Brooke, chief justice, was born in Calvert, county, Md., March 17, 1777. He graduated at Dickinson College in 1795, and was admitted to the bar in Maryland in 1799. Like many other Federalists, he became a supporter of Jackson about 1824, and was called by him to the office of secretary of the treasury in 1833. The charter of the Bank of the United States contained a clause, allowing the secretary of the treasury to order the revenues to be deposited in other place than the bank, giving his reasons therefore to Congress. This clause was meant to cover the case of places where there was o branch bank; Jackson wanted to use it to cover a refusal to deposit any of the revenues in any of the branch banks or in the mother bank. Taney gave the necessary orders, and the bank was deprived of the further use of the revenues. The senate refused to confirm Taney in his position, but his real work in this office had been done. Taney succeeded marshal as chief justice of the Supreme Court. The leading incidents of his career were his opinion in the Dred Scott case, and his attempt in 1861 to maintain the write of habeas corpus against President Lincoln’s suspension of it (the Merryman case). His life has been written by Tyler, and is in Van Santvoord’s Lives of the Chief Justices.

Thomas, Goerge Henry (1816-1870), general in the United States army, was born in Southhampton county, Va., July 13, 1816. He graduated at West Point in 1840, and served on frontier duty and in the Mexican war. His fellow officers in the South unhesitatingly entered the Confederate service in 1861; but he declared for the Federal cause. He was sent at first into his native State, and then to the West, where he soon rose to the command of a division in the army of the Cumberland, with the rank of major-general. His victory of Mill Spring (Jan. 19,-20, 1862) was the first encouraging event in the war in the West. He led his division in the advance on Nashville, and in all the campaigns leading up to the occupation of Corinth, of which place he was given command. He was now really second in command of the army of the Ohio, and distinguished at the battles of Perryville and Murfreesboro, but his reputation was fully made at Chickamauga. When the right of the army had been routed and was in full retreat on Chattanooga, Thomas, who had sustained the brunt of the attack of the first day, held his ground all through the second day against the whole Confederate army, retreated with persistent and stubborn fighting, covered the rest of the army and saved it from destruction, and gave so much time for fortification that Chattanooga was found by Bragg to be too strong for anything but a siege. From this time Thomas was in command of the army of the Cumberland, and held the center at the storming of Missionary Ridge and in the campaigns up to the capture of Atlanta. When Hood undertook to transfers the war to Tennessee, Sherman left Thomas to oppose him. Thomas gathered up all his forces at Nashville, and inflicted a check on the advancing Confederates at Franklin (Nov. 30), but continued his preparations for a final battle near Nashville. His numbers were equal to those of Hood, but he persisted I refusing battle until he had prepared cavalry and made every arrangement for pursuit. Public clamor against Thomas’s delay had become so loud that Grant had started from Virginia to assume command himself when Thomas attacked Hood (Dec. 15), routed him, and kept up so merciless a pursuit that the Confederate army was scattered almost beyond recovery. In 1869 he was transferred to the division of the Pacific, where he died at San Francisco, March 28, 1870. His name has come more and more to be synonymous with all that American regard as best in the character of a military leader. – See Van Horne’s History of the Army of the Cumberland.

Wheeler , William Almon, vice-president of the United States from 1877 to 1881, was born at Malone, N.Y., June 30, 1819. He was admitted to the bar in 1843, served several terms in the State legislature and as president of the State constitutional convention of 1867, and was a member of the house of representatives from 1861 to 1877. He was nominated for the vice-president in 1876 by the Republicans, and was elected, after a contest before the electoral commission. He died at Malone, June 4, 1887.

Woodbury, Levi, was born at Francistown, N.H. Dec. 22, 1789, and was admitted to the bar in New Hampshire in 1812. He became a leader of the Democratic party of his State, was appointed to the supreme court of the State in 1816, was elected, governor in 1823, and speaker of the State house of representatives in 1825, and served in the United States senate the treasury from 1834 to 1841. Again elected to the United States senate in 1841, the served until 1845, when he was appointment as associate justice of the United States Supreme Court. He died at Portsmouth N.H., Sept. 7, 1851. – See Democratic Review, vols. ii and xii. (A. J.)


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