Windom, William, 1827-1891

Alternative names
Birth 1827-05-10
Death 1891-01-29

Biographical notes:

U.S. senator and representative from Minnesota, U.S. secretary of the treasury, and lawyer.

From the description of William Windom correspondence, 1865-1873. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981400

William Windom was born in Belmont County, Ohio, on May 10, 1827, the son of Hezekiah and Mercy Spencer Windom. In 1837 the family moved to Knox County, Ohio, where Windom was admitted to the bar in 1850. He commenced practice in Mount Vernon, Ohio and was elected Knox County prosecuting attorney in 1852. In 1855 he moved to Winona, Minnesota and established a practice with M. Wheeler Sargeant and Thomas Wilson. He was elected to Congress in 1859 and served until his 1869 appointment to fill the U.S. Senate vacancy caused by Daniel S. Norton's death. In 1871 he was elected to the Senate and served until his March 1881 appointment as Secretary of the Treasury under President James A. Garfield. Following Garfield's November 1881 death Windom resigned the position. He was then elected to fill his own Senate vacancy and served until 1883 when he failed in a re-election bid. In 1883 he moved to New York City where he again practiced law. Windom was reappointed Secretary of the Treasury by President Benjamin Harrison in March 1889, a position he held until his death in New York City on January 29, 1891.

Windom married Ellen Towne Hatch (1831-1914) of Mount Vernon, Ohio on August 20, 1856. They had three children: William Douglas (1859-1926), Ellen (Nellie) Hatch (1866-1941), and Florence Bronson (1870-).

Biographical data was taken from the collection and from the Biographical Directory of the American Congress 1774-1971 (U.S. Govt. Printing Office: Wash., D.C., 1971) p. 1943.

From the guide to the William Windom and family papers., 1861-1944., (Minnesota Historical Society)


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