The Road to Civil War

William A. Howard

(April 8, 1813 — April 10, 1880) William Alanson Howard, a Representative from Michigan; born in Hinesburg, Chittenden County, Vt., April 8, 1813; attended the public schools; moved to Albion, N.Y., in 1827 and was apprenticed as a cabinet maker until 1832; was graduated from Wyoming (N.Y.) Academy in 1835 and from Middlebury (Vt.) College in 1839; moved to Detroit, Mich., in 1840 and was a tutor in the branch of Michigan University; also studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1842 and commenced practice in Detroit; city treasurer 1848-1850; elected as an Opposition Party candidate to the Thirty-fourth Congress and as a Republican to the Thirty-fifth Congress (March 4, 1855-March 3, 1859); as a Republican, successfully contested the election of George B. Cooper to the Thirty-sixth Congress and served from May 15, 1860, until March 3, 1861; was not a candidate for renomination in 1860; chairman of the Republican State central committee in 1860 and 1861; postmaster of Detroit 1861-1866; delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1868, 1872, and 1876; moved to Grand Rapids, Mich., to assume duties as land commissioner of the Grand Rapids & Indiana Railway 1869-1871 and of the Northern Pacific Railway 1872-1878; was an unsuccessful candidate for election to the United States Senate in 1871; member of the Republican National Committee 1872-1876; appointed Territorial Governor of Dakota by President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1878 and served until his death in Washington, D.C., on April 10, 1880; interment in Elmwood Cemetery, Detroit, Mich. [Source: “Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774 - Present,” available at]

Member of Michigan Delegation - The Road to Civil War [this display].

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