Kavanagh, Edward, 1795-1844

Alternative names
Birth 1795-04-27
Death 1844-01-22

Biographical notes:

Edward Kavanagh, the thirteenth governor of Maine, was born at Damariscotta Mills, Me., on April 27, 1795. He was the son of James Kavanagh, an immigrant from Ireland who arrived in Boston, Mass. in 1780, and of Sarah (Jackson) Kavanagh, a native of Boston. A Roman Catholic, Edward Kavanagh was educated at Jesuit colleges in Montreal and Georgetown, D.C. He graduated from St. Mary's College, Baltimore, Md., in 1813, after which he joined his father in the lumber and shipbuilding business. Then, following the conclusion of the Napoleonic Wars, he traveled in Europe and Great Britain for two years. After returning home he studied law and, on admission to the bar, settled in Damariscotta Mills as a counselor. In 1826 Kavanagh was elected representative to the Maine Legislature. He served as secretary of the Senate of Maine in 1830 and from 1831 through 1835 was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives. In 1835 Kavanagh was appointed U.S. chargé d'affaires to Portugal by President Andrew Jackson. In this capacity he oversaw the settlement of the claims of American citizens abroad and the conclusion of a commercial and naval treaty between the United States and Portugal. In 1841 he retired from his foreign service post and In 1842 and 1843 was elected to the State Senate of Maine. In 1842 Kavanagh was made chairman of the Maine legislative committee on the dispute over the boundary between Maine and Canada, which was eventually resolved in the Webster-Ashburton Treaty of Aug. 9, 1842. Kavanagh was chosen president of the State Senate of Maine in 1843, and, in March of that year succeeded John Fairfield as governor. He died at Newcastle, Me., on Jan. 20, 1844.

From the description of The Edward Kavanagh collection, 1832-1909 (bulk 1832-1837). (Georgetown University). WorldCat record id: 183612110


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