Seward, William Henry, 1801-1872

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1801-05-16
Death 1872-10-10
English

Biographical notes:

Lawyer, politician, and statesman; principle residence and law practice was in Auburn, New York; Governor of New York State, 1838-1842; United State Senator, 1849-1861; U.S. Secretary of State, 1861-1869.

From the description of Collection, 1828-1936; bulk 1828-1873. (New York State Library). WorldCat record id: 50872192

New York lawyer and U.S. Senator who served as Secretary of State for Abraham Lincoln.

From the description of Letters, 1852-1888. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 54801925

Attorney, Governor of New York, and U.S. Secretary of State under Abraham Lincoln.

From the guide to the William Henry Seward papers, 1838-1867, n.d, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

Born in Orange County, N.Y. Studied law at Union College, and practiced until he was elected to the state senate at age 29. He served as governor of New York, 1838-1842, U.S. senator, 1849-1861, and as Lincoln's secretary of state, 1861-1869.

From the description of William H. Seward letters and subpoena, 1829-1868. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 181085080

Secretary of State.

From the description of Autograph telegram signed : [n.p., n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270664680

From the description of Letter signed : Washington, to an unidentified correspondent, 1867 Apr. 1. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270664918

From the description of Autograph letter signed : Auburn, N.Y., to Hooper C. Van Vorst, 1846 Dec. 10. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270662277

Governor of New York, U.S. Senator, and Secretary of State.

From the description of Papers, 1857-1899. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 20314077

Governor of New York State; Secretary of State with Lincoln.

From the description of William Henry Seward legal opinion, 1858. (New York State Historical Documents). WorldCat record id: 155413402

William Henry Seward, a New York politician and member of the anti-slavery wing of the Whig Party, served as Governor of New York (1839-43), U. S. Senator (1849-61) and U. S. Secretary of State (1861-69) under Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson.

From the description of William H. Seward letter, 1844 Aug. 19. (Louisiana State University). WorldCat record id: 85357129

From the description of William Henry Seward letter, 1858 Feb. 7. (Louisiana State University). WorldCat record id: 85277149

Lemuel D. Evans was a lawyer and former district judge in Harrison County, Texas, who was commissioned as a special agent for the Union during the Civil War.

From the description of William Seward to Edwin Staton Letter, 1862. (University of Texas Libraries). WorldCat record id: 63762644

Seward, governor of New York (1839-1842); Senator from New York (1849-1861); U. S. Secretary of State (1861-1869). He was known as an outspoken opponent of slavery. He was responsible for the purchase of Alaska from Russia; as a result Alaska was in the 19th century known as "Seward's Folly."

From the description of [Letters] n.d, 1861 / William H. Seward. (Smith College). WorldCat record id: 432051640

William Henry Seward, Sr. (1801-1872) was the 12th Governor of New York, a United States Senator, and Secretary of State under Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Andrew Johnson. He is best remembered for engineering the purchase of Alaska from Russia ("Seward's Folly") and for his active opposition to slavery.

From the guide to the William H. Seward Letters, 1834-1854, (Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries)

U.S. secretary of state, 1861-1869.

From the description of ALS : Washington, D.C., to Mary Marcy, 1863 Dec. 29. (Rosenbach Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122690111

American statesman.

From the description of Telegram signed, not autograph : [n.p.], to S.W. Macy, collector, Newport, R.I., [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270665055

William Henry Seward was Governor of New York from 1839-1842, and subsequently served as U.S. Secretary of State in the administrations of Abraham Lincoln and then Andrew Johnson. Samuel J. Tilden was a New York State politician who served as Governor from 1874-1876 and then ran unsuccessfully for President.

From the description of Letters of William Henry Seward and Samuel J. Tilden, 1844-1853. (Cornell University Library). WorldCat record id: 776821608

American governor, senator, and secretary of state.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : place not specified, to Cyrus W. Field, [1863?] Jan. 29. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270663845

U.S. senator from and governor of New York and U.S. secretary of state.

From the description of William Henry Seward correspondence, 1834-1866. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70980431

Alexander Dallas Bache (1806-1867) was an important scientific reformer during the early nineteenth century. From his position as superintendent of the United States Coast Survey, and through leadership roles in the scientific institutions of the time, Bache helped bring American science into alignment with the professional nature of its European counterpart. In addition, Bache fostered the reform of public education in America.

On July 19, 1806 Alexander Dallas Bache was born into one of Philadelphia's elite families. The son of Richard Bache and Sophia Dallas, he was Benjamin Franklin's great-grandson, nephew to George Dallas (vice president under James K. Polk), and grandson to Alexander James Dallas (secretary of the treasury under James Madison). In 1821, Bache was admitted to the United States Military Academy at the age of 15, graduating first in his class four years later. He remained at the Academy for an additional two years to teach mathematics and natural history. While serving as a lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers, working on the construction of Fort Adams in Newport, R.I., he met Nancy Clarke Fowler whom he would later marry.

Bache left the Army in 1828 to begin an academic career, accepting an appointment as professor of natural philosophy and chemistry at the University of Pennsylvania. Although his scientific interests were broad, he had a particular interest in geophyscial research. While in Philadelphia, he constructed a magnetic observatory, and made extensive research into terrestrial magnetism, and during the 1830s he began to be recognized as a leading figure in the city's scientific community. Bache was an active member of the American Philosphical Society and the Franklin Institute, seeking to raise the professional standards of both institutions and urging them to place a stronger emphasis on original research. While at the Franklin Institute from 1830-1835, Bache led a Federally-funded investigation into steam-boiler explosions, the government's first use of technical experts to examine a matter involving public policy.

In 1836 Bache became interested in educational reform when he was asked to help organize the curriculum at Girard College, of which he later served as president. Bache spent two years in Europe visiting over 250 educational institutions. The result of his visit was a 600 page study, Report on Education in Europe, to the Trustees of the Girard College for Orphans published in 1839. Although Bache was unable to apply the report at Girard College because of its delayed opening, it proved useful in overhauling the curriculum of Philadelphia's Central High School, where he was superintendent from 1839-1842, and was widely influential among American educational reformers, helping to introduce the Prussian educational model to the United States.

After meeting many of the leading savants during a European tour, including Alexander von Humboldt, Francois Arago, and Karl Friedrich Gauss, Bache became convinced of the need to professionalize American science. His opportunity to make an impact came in 1843 with the death of Ferdinand Hassler, superindendent of the U.S. Coast Survey. In the years before the Civil War, the Coast Survey supported more scientists then any other institution in the country, and Bache and his colleagues saw the Survey as a means of gaining federal patronage for science. After a campaign by his friends and colleagues, Bache was named as Hassler's replacement. Over the next two decades Bache transformed the Coast Survey into one of the nation's leading scientific institutions, becoming an important patron of science himself in the process . Bache was not just an administrator, but remained personally involved in field work.

Bache also led the reform of American science through his leadership of an elite group known as the "Lazzaroni" or scientific beggars. The goal of the Lazzaroni was to ensure that the nation's leading scientists kept control of the nation's scientific institutions, and they were instrumental in reforming the American Association for the Advancement of Science (of which Bache was president of in 1850). In his remarkably busy schedule, Bache was a member of the Lighthouse Board (1844-1845), superintendent of the Office of Weights and Measures (1844), and a prominent regent for the Smithsonian Institution, where he convinced fellow Lazzaroni Joseph Henry to become its first secretary. Bache also played a leading role in the creation of the National Academy of Sciences, serving as its first president. When the Americn Civil War broke out, Bache focused the Coast Survey to support the war effort, was vice president of the Sanitary Commision, a consultant to the army and navy on battle plans, a superintended for Philadelphia's defence plans, and a member of the Permanent Commission of the navy in charge of evaluating new weapons. Bache died in Newport, R.I. on February 17, 1867.

From the guide to the A. D. Bache Collection, 1833-1873, (American Philosophical Society)

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Subjects:

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  • Secession
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  • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865
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  • 1867 Apr. 1
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