Depew, Chauncey M. (Chauncey Mitchell), 1834-1928

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1834-04-23
Death 1928-04-05

Biographical notes:

Charles Ranlett Flint (1850-1934) was a financial capitalist, merchant and industrial consolidator. He entered the shipping business and worked for commission merchants in New York City. Popularly known as the "Father of Trusts", he was responsible for many industrial consolidations and mergers.

From the guide to the Charles R. Flint papers, 1872-1930, 1885-1915, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

Chauncey Mitchell Depew (1834-1928) was a lawyer, railroad executive, and U.S. Senator from New York. He was Secretary of State of New York in 1863; worked for the New York & Harlem Railroad, the New York City & Hudson River Railroad, and the West Shore Railroad; and served on the board of directors of numerous railway, banking and other corporations. He was active in the Republican Party and was elected to the U.S. Senate for two terms, 1899 to 1911.

From the guide to the Chauncey M. Depew papers, 1880-1925, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

Epithet: American lawyer and politician

British Library Archives and Manuscripts Catalogue : Person : Description : ark:/81055/vdc_100000000621.0x0002ac

Lawyer and politician; in 1858 admitted to New York Bar; 1861, elected to New York State Assembly; 1863, elected Secretary of State of New York; 1866, appointed attorney for the New York and Harlem Railroad; 1869, attorney for the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad; 1882, vice-president of the New York Central Railroad; 1885-1898, president; 1899-1911, U.S. Senator from New York; active in Republican politics.

From the description of Chauncey Mitchell Depew papers, 1880-1928 (inclusive). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 702205564

From the description of Chauncey Mitchell Depew papers, 1880-1928 (inclusive). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122400919

U.S. senator, railroad official, author, and lecturer from New York.

From the description of Chauncey M. Depew papers, 1865-1928. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 70981140

American lawyer, senator and railway magnate.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : New York, to Elsie Leslie, 1891 July 11. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270526085

Executive of New York Central Railroad,1886-1926, serving as president, 1885-1898; politician, served in New York state legislature, 1862-1865, Senator from New York, 1899-1911.

From the description of Chauncey M. Depew papers, 1854-1934 (bulk 1880-1920). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 8815841

American lawyer, senator, and railway magnate.

From the description of Autograph letter signed : [New York, n.d.], to [Harry Harkness] Flagler, [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270565755

American lawyer, Senator, Pres. N.Y. Central R.R.

From the description of Typed document signed by four officials of the New York State Senate and Assembly : Albany, 1899 Jan. 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270874901

Chauncey Mitchell Depew (1834-1928) was a lawyer, railroad executive, and U.S. Senator from New York.

He was Secretary of State of New York in 1863; worked for the New York? and served on the board of directors of numerous railway, banking and other corporations. He was active in the Republican Party and was elected to the U.S. Senate for two terms, 1899 to 1911.

From the description of Chauncey M. Depew papers, 1880-1925. (New York Public Library). WorldCat record id: 122608104

Lawyer and politician; in 1858 admitted to New York Bar; 1861, elected to New York State Assembly; 1863, elected Secretary of State of New York; 1866, appointed attorney for the New York and Harlem Railroad; 1869, attorney for the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad; 1882, vice-president of the New York Central Railroad; 1885-1898, president; 1899-1911, U.S. Senator from New York; active in Republican politics.

  • 1834 April 23: Born in Peekskill, New York, the son of Isaac and Martha Minot (Mitchell) Depew.
  • 1844 - 1852 : Attended the Peekskill Military Academy.
  • 1852 - 1856 : Attended Yale College; member of Linonian Society, Skull and Bones, Kappa Sigma Epsilon, Kappa Sigma Theta, and Psi Upsilon.
  • 1856: Graduated from Yale College; participated in the Republican canvass for John Charles Fremont.
  • 1856 - 1858 : Read law in the offices of William Nelson in Peekskill.
  • 1858: Admitted to the New York Bar; elected a delegate to the Republican State Convention.
  • 1860: Campaigned for Abraham Lincoln and Hannibal Hamlin.
  • 1861: Elected a member of the New York State Assembly.
  • 1862: Re-elected a member of the New York State Assembly; Republican candidate for Speaker; Speaker pro tem.; Chairman, Ways and Means Committee.
  • 1863: Elected Secretary of State of New York. (1863-1865)
  • 1865: Appointed and confirmed United States Minister to Japan, but declined the appointment.
  • 1866: Appointed attorney for the New York & Harlem Railroad Company.
  • 1867: Appointed clerk of Westchester County by Governor Fuller and resigned.
  • 1869: Appointed attorney for the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad Company.
  • 1870: Appointed Immigration Commissioner by the State Legislature; declined appointment.
  • 1871: Married Elise Ann Hegeman (1848-1893).
  • 1872: Unsuccessful candidate for Lieutenant Governor of New York on the Greeley-Liberal Republican ticket.
  • 1874: Appointed by the State Legislature as a Regent of the State University and as a commissioner to build the State Capitol in Albany.
  • 1876: Appointed general counsel and director of the New York Central 'Vanderbilt System'.
  • 1879 July 7: Only son, Chauncey Mitchell Depew, Jr., born.
  • 1881: Unsuccessful candidate for United States Senator.
  • 1882: Named second vice-president of the New York Central Railroad Company.
  • 1884: Declined nomination for United States Senator.
  • 1885: Became president of the New York Central and the 'Vanderbilt System'; President 1885-1898.
  • 1887: Received honorary LL.D. from Yale
  • 1888: Delegate-at-large to the Republican National Convention; received the New York vote for the presidential nomination, but withdrew in favor of Benjamin Harrison; after Harrison's election, offered a place in the cabinet, but declined such a post.
  • 1888 - 1906 : Fellow of the Yale Corporation.
  • 1892: Delegate-at-Large to the Republican National Convention; made nominating speech for Benjamin Harrison; offered the vacant post of Secretary of State by Harrison, but declined.
  • 1896: Delegate-at-Large to the Republican National Convention; made nominating speech for Governor Levi P. Norton.
  • 1898: Resigned as President of the New York Central Railroad Company and appointed Chairman of the Board of Directors; Chairman 1898-1928; elected to the United States Senate.
  • 1899 - 1905 : United States Senator from New York.
  • 1900: Delegate-at-Large to the Republican National Convention.
  • 1901 Dec 27: Married May Palmer in Nice, France.
  • 1904: I Delegate-at-Large to the Republican National Convention; made nominating speech for Charles W. Fairbank; re-elected to the United States Senate.
  • 1905 - 1911 : United States Senator from New York
  • 1910: Unsuccessful candidate for re-election to the United States Senate.
  • 1912: 1916: 1920: 1924: Delegate to the Republican National Conventions.
  • 1928 Apr 5: Died in New York City.

From the guide to the Chauncey Mitchell Depew papers, 1879-1928, (Manuscripts and Archives)

Chauncey Mitchell Depew (1834-1928) was an American lawyer, politician, and railroad man. He served as a United States Senator from New York State from 1899 to 1911.

Depew was born April 23, 1834 in Peekskill, New York to Isaac and Martha (Mitchell) Depew. His mother was the great-niece of Roger Sherman, signer of the Declaration of Independence. Depew went to a classically-based private school before attending the Peekskill Academy for high school. In 1852, Depew enrolled at Yale University. When he graduated in 1856, Depew was asked to be an orator at the Commencement Day activities.

The future senator went on to have a successful career. He began by studying as a lawyer under the direction of Edward Wells in Peekskill. An active Republican, Depew attended the New York state convention in 1858 as a delegate, served on the New York State Assembly in 1862 and 1863, and filled the role of New York Secretary of State from 1863 to 1865. While in this position, Depew had the honor of escorting President Lincoln's body from the New York State border to Buffalo, New York on its way to Springfield, Illinois to be interred. In 1866, Depew was appointed minister to Japan by President Andrew Johnson. However, Depew shortly left the position in favor of an offer to be attorney for the Hudson River and Harlem railroad lines. In 1882, Depew began serving on the executive board of the New York Central and Hudson River Railroad lines. Three years later he served as president of the railroad, before taking a position as chairman of the board of directors in 1898. Remaining involved in politics, Depew was elected U.S. Senator for the state of New York, serving from 1899-1911.

Depew married Elise A. Hegeman in 1871, with whom he had one son, Chauncey Mitchell Depew, Jr. After being widowed in 1893, Depew was remarried to May Palmer. He died on April 5, 1928 at 27 West 54th Street, New York.

From the guide to the Chauncey M. Depew Letters, 1864-1927, (Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries)

The Honorable Jacob A. Brenner, born on April 8, 1857 to Simon Brenner (1820-1898), an Orthodox Jewish rabbi, and Caroline Alexander (1830-1900), resided and worked in Brooklyn and Amityville, N.Y. his entire life. The Brenner family's financial circumstances prohibited Brenner from attending college after graduating at the age of 14 from Public School #27, also known as the Agnes Y. Humphrey School, on Nelson Street in the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn. Brenner instead entered the Manhattan law offices of Smith, Woodward & Buckley in 1871 and "read" law under General Jesse S. Smith, the firm's senior partner and former Surrogate of Brooklyn. Brenner passed the bar exam in 1879 and soon formed a partnership with William J. G. Bearns. They opened their own law offices on Court Street under the name of Bearns & Brenner, specializing in civil and real estate law, on February 1, 1891.

Brenner had a highly successful career within the Kings County judicial and political systems. Mayor Charles A. Schieren (1842-1915) appointed Brenner counsel to the Brooklyn Police and Excise Board in 1893. He resigned this post when elected to the bench in 1897. Elected Kings County Commissioner of Jurors in 1902, Brenner held the position until his death in 1921, and the Brooklyn Police and Excise Board reappointed Brenner as counsel in 1911. Brenner became very active in Brooklyn politics beginning in the late 1880s. He served as the Republican leader of the Tenth Ward in South Brooklyn, an area bounded by Bergen Street, Fourth Avenue, First Street, the Gowanus Canal, Second Avenue, Fifth Street, Fourth Place, and Court Street. Brenner held the position of chairman of the Republican Executive Committee of New York State from 1897 on and served through the terms of New York State Lieutenant Governor Timothy L. Woodruff (c.1858-1913) and United States Senator Chauncey M. Depew (1834-1928), both of whom became close personal friends. The New York State Executive Committee of the Republican Party named Brenner as a state delegate to the Republican National Convention from 1904-1916 as well as a delegate to the New York State Constitutional Convention in 1915.

Brenner became prominent in Jewish communal and philanthropic activities, serving as president and Hebrew school teacher at Temple Beth-Elohim, a Reform congregation also known as the Eighth Avenue Temple, located on Eighth Avenue and Garfield Place for many years, as well as on the board of the Hebrew Orphan Asylum, the Young Men's Hebrew Association, the Federation of Jewish Charities, and as the first president of the Jewish Hospital on Prospect Place. His club memberships included the Euclid Lodge, a Masonic chapter in Kings County, the Royal Arcanum, as well as the Brooklyn, Montauk, and Unity Clubs. Brenner also served as vice-president of the Brooklyn Bar Association, and director of the First National Bank, then located at Fulton Street and Red Hook Lane.

Brenner married Louise Blumenau (ca. 1860-1902), the daughter of prominent Brooklyn real estate developer Levi Blumenau, on June 27, 1883. The couple had two sons, Arthur and Mortimer, and four daughters, Rose, Rica, Selma, and Caroline. The family resided at 252 Carroll Street in the present-day Brooklyn neighborhood of Carroll Gardens. Both Arthur and Mortimer Brenner became prominent lawyers and Republican Party members in Brooklyn. Rose Brenner became a well-known activist in Brooklyn for her work during World War I as president of the National Council of Jewish Women.

A quick succession of deaths within a period of four years marked the Brenner family: Simon Brenner (September 7, 1898), Caroline Brenner (September 22, 1900), and Louise Brenner (February 21, 1902). Jacob Brenner died on October 17, 1921 of heart disease while giving a speech at Temple Beth-Elohim. He is buried at Mount Neboh Cemetery in the Cypress Hills neighborhood of Brooklyn.

From the guide to the Jacob Brenner papers, Bulk, 1896-1902, 1884-1921, (Brooklyn Historical Society)

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