Samuel Holten was an American physician and statesman from Danvers, Massachusetts. He represented Massachusetts as a delegate to the Continental Congress and a member of the United States House of Representatives. Holten was born in Danvers, Massachusetts on June 9, 1738, he was studied medicine and established a practice in Gloucester. He soon returned to Danvers. During the American Revolution Holten supported the Patriot cause. Holten served in the militia as a major in the First Essex County Regiment, he was a member of the Massachusetts Provincial Congress from 1774 to 1775 and the Massachusetts Committee of Safety in 1775. He served in the Continental Congress from 1778 to 1780 and the United States in Congress Assembled, 1783 to 1785, again in 1787, he was elected Chairman of the United States in Congress Assembled on August 17, 1785. ″His Excellency the president, being, by indisposition, prevented from attending the House, Congress proceeded to the election of a Chairman, the ballots being taken, the honble.
Samuel Holten was elected.″ Holten was a member of the state constitutional convention in 1779. From 1780 to 1782 Holten served in the Massachusetts Senate, he served again in 1784, 1786, 1789, 1790. In 1787 he was a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. From 1780 to 1782 Holten was a member of the Massachusetts Governor's Council, he served again in 1784, 1786, 1789 to 1792, 1795, 1796. In 1792 Holten was elected as an Anti-Administration candidate to the Third Congress. Holten served as judge of the Essex County Court, he was appointed judge of the Essex County Probate Court in 1796, he served until his resignation in 1815. He died in Danvers on January 2, 1816, was buried at Holten Cemetery in Danvers. United States Congress. "Samuel Holten". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
James Grant Wilson
James Grant Wilson was an American editor, author and publisher, who founded the Chicago Record in 1857, the first literary paper in that region. During the American Civil War, he served as a colonel in the Union Army. In recognition of his service, in 1867, he was nominated and confirmed for appointment as a brevet brigadier general of volunteers to rank from March 13, 1865, he settled in New York, where he edited biographies and histories, was a public speaker, served as president of the Society of American Authors and the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society. James Grant Wilson was born on April 28, 1832 in Edinburgh, the son of the poet William Wilson and his second wife, Miss Jane Sibbald of Hawick. In infancy, he moved with his family to the United States, where they settled at Poughkeepsie, New York, he had two younger brothers. Wilson was educated in Poughkeepsie at College Hill, continued his studies in the languages and drawing, under private teachers, he joined his father in business as a bookseller/publisher becoming his partner.
In 1855, Wilson started on his tour of Europe and its capitals. Upon his return in 1857, he settled in the growing city of Chicago, where he founded the Chicago Record, a journal of art and literature, it was the first literary paper published in that region. He became known as a speaker. During the Civil War, Wilson sold his journal and entered the Union Army late in 1862, he was commissioned as a major of the 15th Illinois Cavalry, commanded the 4th U. S. C. Cavalry as colonel, he resigned from the Army on June 16, 1865. On February 27, 1867, President Andrew Johnson nominated Wilson for appointment to the grade of brevet brigadier general of volunteers to rank from March 13, 1865, the United States Senate confirmed the appointment on March 2, 1867, his middle brother was killed at Fredericksburg and his youngest brother served. After the war, Wilson settled in New York City, he became known as a speaker, a frequent contributor to periodicals, president of the Society of American Authors, after 1885, of the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society.
He edited Fitz-Greene Halleck's Poems and wrote his biography, published in 1869. He edited A Memorial History of the City of New York. On November 3, 1869, he married Jane Emily Searle Cogswell, the sister of Andrew Kirkpatrick Cogswell and the daughter of Rev. Jonathan Cogswell and Jane Eudora Kirkpatrick. Jane's grandfather was Andrew Kirkpatrick and her great-grandfather was John Bayard. Before her death in 1904, they had one daughter together: Jane Wilson, who married Frank Sylvester Henry After his first wife's death in 1904, he married Mary H. Nicholson, the widow of his friend Admiral James William Augustus Nicholson, in 1907, he resided at 143 West 79th Street in New York City. Wilson died in New York City and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, New York. Biographical Sketches of Illinois Officers Life of Fitz-Greene Halleck Sketches of Illustrious Soldiers Poets and Poetry of Scotland Blackie & Son, Edinburgh 1876 Centennial History of the Diocese of New York, 1775-1885 Bryant and his Friends Commodore Isaac Hull and the Frigate Constitution Wilson, James Grant.
The Memorial History of the City of New York: From Its First Settlement to the Year 1892. New York History Co. Love in Letters Life of General Grant Thackeray in the United States List of American Civil War brevet generals Notes SourcesEicher, John H.. "article name needed". New International Encyclopedia. New York: Dodd, Mead. "Wilson, James Grant". New International Encyclopedia. 1905. "Wilson, James Grant". Encyclopedia Americana. 1920
American Antiquarian Society
The American Antiquarian Society, located in Worcester, Massachusetts, is both a learned society and national research library of pre-twentieth century American history and culture. Founded in 1812, it is the oldest historical society in the United States with a national focus, its main building, known as Antiquarian Hall, is a U. S. National Historic Landmark in recognition of this legacy; the mission of the AAS is to collect and make available for study all printed records of what is now known as the United States of America. This includes materials from the first European settlement through the year 1876; the AAS offers programs for professional scholars, pre-collegiate and graduate students, professional artists, writers and the general public. AAS has many digital collections available, including "A New Nation Votes: American Election Returns 1788–1824."The collections of the AAS contain over three million books, newspapers, graphic arts materials and manuscripts. The Society is estimated to hold copies of two-thirds of the total books known to have been printed in what is now the United States from the establishment of the first press in 1640 through the year 1820.
Historic materials from all fifty U. S. states, most of Canada and the British West Indies are included in the AAS repository. One of the more famous volumes held by the Society is a copy of the first book printed in America, the Bay Psalm Book. AAS has one of the largest collections of newspapers printed in America through 1876, with more than two million issues in its collection. On the initiative of Isaiah Thomas, the AAS was founded on October 24, 1812, through an act of the Massachusetts General Court, it was the third historical society established in America, the first to be national in its scope. Isaiah Thomas started the collection with 8,000 books from his personal library; the first library building was erected in 1820 in downtown Massachusetts. In 1853, the Society moved its collections to a larger building at the corner of Highland Street in Worcester; this building was abandoned and another new building was constructed. Designed by Winslow, Bigelow & Wadsworth, the Georgian Revival building was completed in 1910 and stands on the corner of Park Avenue and Salisbury Street.
There have been several additions to this building to accommodate the growing collection, the most recent of, completed in 2003. AAS was presented with the 2013 National Humanities Medal by President Obama in a ceremony at the White House; as part of AAS's mission as a learned society, it offers a variety of public seminars. One topic to which AAS dedicates significant academic energies is printing technology in eighteenth-century British North America. Since Isaiah Thomas was a newspaper man himself, he collected a large number of printed materials. With regard to printing, paper making, edition setting, reprinting, not much had changed in European technology by the eighteenth century, it was not until the late eighteenth century that paper-making material began to evolve from a hand-woven cloth to an industrial pulp. AAS undertakes special efforts to preserve printed records from this time period, as the Society maintains an on-site conservation department with various sewing and binding materials to aid in the preservation process.
The American Antiquarian Society's membership includes scholars, journalists, filmmakers and civic leaders. Notable members include the following individuals: Books in the United States History of books List of antiquarian societies Massachusetts Historical Society John Ratcliff List of National Historic Landmarks in Massachusetts National Register of Historic Places listings in northwestern Worcester, Massachusetts Goslow, Brian. "Worcester's best kept secret: The American Antiquarian Society belongs to everyone". Worcester Magazine. Archived from the original on October 17, 2014. Retrieved October 10, 2014. Gura, Philip F; the American Antiquarian Society, 1812–2012: A Bicentennial History 454 pp. Proceedings of the American Antiquarian Society. Worcester, Mass.: the Society, 1843– American Antiquarian Society Homepage Common-Place free online scholarly history journal focused on early US Republic
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is the lower chamber of the United States Congress, the Senate being the upper chamber. Together they compose the legislature of the United States; the composition of the House is established by Article One of the United States Constitution. The House is composed of Representatives who sit in congressional districts that are allocated to each of the 50 states on a basis of population as measured by the U. S. Census, with each district entitled to one representative. Since its inception in 1789, all Representatives have been directly elected; the total number of voting representatives is fixed by law at 435. As of the 2010 Census, the largest delegation is that of California, with fifty-three representatives. Seven states have only one representative: Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming; the House is charged with the passage of federal legislation, known as bills, after concurrence by the Senate, are sent to the President for consideration.
In addition to this basic power, the House has certain exclusive powers, among them the power to initiate all bills related to revenue. The House meets in the south wing of the United States Capitol; the presiding officer is the Speaker of the House, elected by the members thereof. The Speaker and other floor leaders are chosen by the Democratic Caucus or the Republican Conference, depending on whichever party has more voting members. Under the Articles of Confederation, the Congress of the Confederation was a unicameral body in which each state was represented, in which each state had a veto over most action. After eight years of a more limited confederal government under the Articles, numerous political leaders such as James Madison and Alexander Hamilton initiated the Constitutional Convention in 1787, which received the Confederation Congress's sanction to "amend the Articles of Confederation". All states except Rhode Island agreed to send delegates; the issue of how to structure Congress was one of the most divisive among the founders during the Convention.
Edmund Randolph's Virginia Plan called for a bicameral Congress: the lower house would be "of the people", elected directly by the people of the United States and representing public opinion, a more deliberative upper house, elected by the lower house, that would represent the individual states, would be less susceptible to variations of mass sentiment. The House is referred to as the lower house, with the Senate being the upper house, although the United States Constitution does not use that terminology. Both houses' approval is necessary for the passage of legislation; the Virginia Plan drew the support of delegates from large states such as Virginia and Pennsylvania, as it called for representation based on population. The smaller states, favored the New Jersey Plan, which called for a unicameral Congress with equal representation for the states; the Convention reached the Connecticut Compromise or Great Compromise, under which one house of Congress would provide representation proportional to each state's population, whereas the other would provide equal representation amongst the states.
The Constitution was ratified by the requisite number of states in 1788, but its implementation was set for March 4, 1789. The House began work on April 1789, when it achieved a quorum for the first time. During the first half of the 19th century, the House was in conflict with the Senate over regionally divisive issues, including slavery; the North was much more populous than the South, therefore dominated the House of Representatives. However, the North held no such advantage in the Senate, where the equal representation of states prevailed. Regional conflict was most pronounced over the issue of slavery. One example of a provision supported by the House but blocked by the Senate was the Wilmot Proviso, which sought to ban slavery in the land gained during the Mexican–American War. Conflict over slavery and other issues persisted until the Civil War, which began soon after several southern states attempted to secede from the Union; the war culminated in the abolition of slavery. All southern senators except Andrew Johnson resigned their seats at the beginning of the war, therefore the Senate did not hold the balance of power between North and South during the war.
The years of Reconstruction that followed witnessed large majorities for the Republican Party, which many Americans associated with the Union's victory in the Civil War and the ending of slavery. The Reconstruction period ended in about 1877; the Democratic Party and Republican Party each held majorities in the House at various times. The late 19th and early 20th centuries saw a dramatic increase in the power of the Speaker of the House; the rise of the Speaker's influence began in the 1890s, during the tenure of Republican Thomas Brackett Reed. "Czar Reed", as he was nicknamed, attempted to put into effect his view that "The best system is to have one party govern and the other party watch." The leadership structure of the House developed during the same period, with the positions of Majority Leader and Minority Leader being created in 1899. While the Minority Leader
William Eustis was an early American physician and statesman from Massachusetts. Trained in medicine, he served as a military surgeon during the American Revolutionary War, notably at the Battle of Bunker Hill, he soon entered politics. After several terms in the state legislature, Eustis won election to the United States Congress in 1800, serving as a moderate Democratic-Republican, he returned to state politics after losing reelection in 1804, was chosen to be Secretary of War in 1809 by President James Madison. Due in part to his inexperience at managing the army and a lack of preparedness, the military failures in the early months of the War of 1812 were laid on his shoulders, leading to his resignation. Madison appointed Eustis Minister to the Netherlands, a post he held from 1814 until 1818. After another period in Congress, he was elected Governor of Massachusetts in 1822. A popular successor to long-serving John Brooks, Eustis died in office in 1825, his Boston mansion, built in the 1750s by royal governor William Shirley, is known as the Shirley-Eustis House and is a National Historic Landmark.
William Eustis was born on June 10, 1753 in Cambridge, to Benjamin Eustis, a prominent Boston doctor, Elizabeth Eustis. He was the second surviving son of twelve children, he was educated at the Boston Latin School before he entered Harvard College, from which he graduated in 1772. While at Harvard he belonged to an undergraduate militia unit called the Martimercurian Band. After graduation he studied medicine under a well-known Patriot political leader; when the Battles of Lexington and Concord sparked the American Revolutionary War in April 1775, Warren and Eustis both worked in the field, tending the injured revolutionaries. Warren secured for Eustis a commission as regimental surgeon to the rebel artillery. Eustis helped care for the wounded at the June 1775 Battle of Bunker Hill, in which Warren was killed, he served with the Continental Army in the New York and New Jersey campaign, refusing a lieutenant colonel's commission offered by artillery chief Henry Knox. During his Continental Army service, Eustis met and established an enduring friendship with New Jersey native Aaron Burr.
In 1777 Eustis was placed in command of a military hospital established at the former residence of Loyalist Beverley Robinson north of New York City, where he remained for the duration of the war. In September 1780 he played a minor role in events surrounding the flight of traitor Benedict Arnold: he treated Arnold's wife Peggy, hysterical over the sudden departure of her husband and the discovery of his plot. After the war Eustis returned to medical practice in Boston, he was once again called on to serve in military matters when Shays' Rebellion broke out in western Massachusetts in 1786, becoming surgeon to the militia force raised by General Benjamin Lincoln that quashed the rebellion in the early months of 1787. Eustis became vice president of the Society of the Cincinnati in 1786, a post he held until 1810, again in 1820. Eustis was elected to the Massachusetts General Court from 1788 to 1794, which he left because he was "sick of" the political gamesmanship in the body, he was thereafter chosen to serve on the Governor's Council for two years.
In 1800 he ran for a seat in the United States House of Representatives. During his successful campaign against Josiah Quincy, Eustis was charged with either authoring, or being complicit in the production of, letters that formed a part of the 1783 Newburgh Conspiracy, a threatened uprising in the Continental Army. Eustis publicly was silent on his role in the affair. Eustis was a moderate Democratic-Republican who did not seek the significant reforms more radical Republicans wanted, he demonstrated this by voting against President Thomas Jefferson's repeal of the Judiciary Act of 1801, a Federalist bill passed in the late days of the John Adams administration that had expanded the number of seats on the federal bench. In 1802 Eustis was reelected, defeating John Quincy Adams, in a rematch of the 1800 election with Quincy, Eustis was defeated by fewer than 100 votes. While in the House, he was one of the managers appointed by the House of Representatives in 1804 to conduct the impeachment proceedings against John Pickering, judge of the United States District Court for New Hampshire.
In 1804 he argued in favor of arming merchant vessels headed for the West Indies. When James Madison became president in 1809, he sought to enhance the status of the Democratic-Republicans in Federalist-dominated New England. To that end he chose Eustis to be his Secretary of War. Eustis was not a good choice for the post, lacking the necessary administrative skills and detailed military background, he had difficult relations with James Wilkinson and Wade Hampton, two senior army commanders. Eustis made a major push to update the military's field manuals, which had not changed since the Revolutionary War. After acquiring copies of manuals published in 1791 for use by the armies of the French Republic, Eustis commissioned a translation and lobbied for adoption of new manuals based on French tactics. Although a new manual was ready for use in 1812, it was not well received by the officer corps, was not used in the war that broke out that year; as tensions grew between the United States and Great Britain, Eustis made modest moves to improve military readiness, but did not otherwise distinguish himself or introduce other initiatives or proposals.
Samuel Dexter was an early American statesman who served both in Congress and in the Presidential Cabinets of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Born in Boston, Massachusetts, to the Rev. Samuel Dexter, the 4th minister of Dedham, he graduated from Harvard University in 1781 and studied law at Worcester under Levi Lincoln Sr. the future Attorney General of the United States. After he passed the bar in 1784, he began practicing in Massachusetts, he was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives and served from 1788 to 1790. He was elected to the United States House of Representatives as a Federalist and served in the 3rd Congress, he served in the United States Senate from March 4, 1799, to May 30, 1800. During a House discussion on a Naturalization Bill in 1795, Virginia Representative William Branch Giles controversially suggested that all immigrants be forced to take an oath renouncing any titles of nobility they held. Dexter responded by questioning why Catholics were not required to denounce allegiance to the Pope, because priestcraft had initiated more problems throughout history than aristocracy.
Dexter's points caused an infuriated James Madison to defend American Catholics, many of whom, such as Charles Carroll of Carrollton, had been good citizens during the American Revolution, to point out that hereditary titles were barred under the Constitution in any event. In December 1799, he delivered the Senate eulogy for George Washington. Dexter served in the Senate for less than a year, resigned in order to accept his appointment as United States Secretary of War in the administration of President John Adams. During his time at the War Department he urged congressional action to permit appointment and compensation of field officers for general staff duty; when Secretary of the Treasury Oliver Wolcott Jr. resigned in December 1800, Adams appointed Dexter as interim Secretary, Dexter served from January to May 1801. With incoming President Thomas Jefferson wanting to delay his choice for Secretary of the Treasury, Albert Gallatin, for a recess appointment in May, Dexter agreed to retain his duties as Secretary of the Treasury for the first two months of Jefferson's term.
In a letter to his wife on March 5, 1801, Gallatin said that Dexter had behaved "with great civility." He resumed the practice of law. He left the Federalists and became a Democratic-Republican because he supported the War of 1812, he was an unsuccessful candidate for Governor of Massachusetts in 1814, 1815 and 1816. Dexter was an ardent supporter of the temperance movement and presided over its first formal organization in Massachusetts, he was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1800. He died on May 4, 1816, shortly before his 55th birthday and is buried at Mount Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Simon Newton Dexter and Andrew Dexter Jr. were his nephews. Samuel W. Dexter, founder of Dexter, was his son. Samuel Dexter is the namesake of Maine; the USRC Dexter was named in his honor. United States Congress. "Samuel Dexter". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved on 2009-5-20 "Samuel Dexter". Find a Grave. Retrieved 2009-05-20
Thomson J. Skinner
Thomson Joseph Skinner was an American politician from Williamstown, Massachusetts. In addition to service as a militia officer during the American Revolution, he served as a county judge and sheriff, member of both houses of the Massachusetts legislature, U. S. Marshal, member of the United States House of Representatives, he served for two years as Treasurer and Receiver-General of Massachusetts, after his death an audit showed his accounts to be deficient for more than the value of his estate, which led to those who had posted bonds on his behalf having to pay the debt. Thomson J. Skinner was born in Colchester, Connecticut on May 24, 1752, the son of Reverend Thomas Skinner and Mary Thomson, the second wife of Thomas Skinner. Skinner was educated in Colchester, his father died when he was 10 years old, Thomson Skinner and his brother Benjamin were apprenticed to a carpenter and homebuilder. At age 21 Skinner moved to Williamstown, Massachusetts with his brother, where they went into the construction business as partners in a firm they named "T. J. and B. Skinner".
The Skinner brothers were involved in other ventures, including a successful tavern. Thomson Skinner was a member of the militia, including service during and after the American Revolution. In the summer of 1776 he carried messages between units in Berkshire County and General Horatio Gates, commander of the Continental Army's Northern Department in upstate New York, he served as adjutant of Berkshire County's 2nd Regiment, adjutant of the Berkshire County 3rd Regiment, a company commander in the Berkshire County regiment commanded by Asa Barnes. Skinner remained in the militia after the war, rose to the rank of major general. During the Revolution he served as a member of the court-martial which acquitted Paul Revere's conduct during the unsuccessful Penobscot Expedition, he served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1781, 1785, 1789, 1800. He was a member of the Massachusetts State Senate from 1786 to 1788, 1790 to 1797, 1801 to 1803. From 1788 to 1807 he was a Judge of the Court of Common Pleas for Berkshire County, he was chief judge from 1795 to 1807.
In 1788 he was a delegate to the state convention that ratified the United States Constitution, voted in favor of ratification. From 1791 to 1792 he served as Berkshire County Sheriff. In 1792 Skinner, recognized as a Federalist, was a presidential elector, supported the reelection of George Washington and John Adams. Skinner was a founding trustee of Williams College, served on the board of trustees from 1793 to 1809, was treasurer from 1793 to 1798. Skinner represented Massachusetts's 1st congressional district in the U. S. House for part of one term and all of another, January 1797 to March 1799, he was again elected to the U. S. House in 1802, this time from the renumbered 12th District, served from March 1803 until resigning in August 1804. Skinner, by now identified with the Jeffersonian or Democratic-Republican Party, lost to John Quincy Adams, the Federalist candidate, in an 1803 election for U. S. Senator. From 1804 to 1807 Skinner served as U. S. Marshal for Massachusetts. From 1806 to 1808 he was Receiver-General of Massachusetts.
Skinner died in Boston on January 20, 1809. After Skinner's death, an 1809 audit revealed that his accounts as state treasurer were in arrears for $60,000, while his estate was valued at only $20,000. Several of the individuals who had posted surety bonds to guarantee his performance as treasurer paid portions of the remaining $40,000 obligation in order to satisfy Skinner's debt. In 1773 Skinner married Ann Foote, their children included Thomson Joseph, Thomas, Ann and George Denison. Skinner and his wife had known each other as children because Skinner's mother had married Ann Foote's father following the deaths of Skinner's father and Foote's mother. United States Congress. "Thomson J. Skinner". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress