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Arthur I. Boreman

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Arthur I. Boreman
Arthur I. Boreman - Brady-Handy.jpg
United States Senator
from West Virginia
In office
March 4, 1869 – March 3, 1875
Preceded byPeter G. Van Winkle
Succeeded byAllen T. Caperton
1st Governor of West Virginia
In office
June 20, 1863 – February 26, 1869
Preceded byFrancis Harrison Pierpont
as Governor of the Restored Government of Virginia
Succeeded byDaniel D. T. Farnsworth
Member of the Virginia House of Delegates
from the Wood County district
In office
December 3, 1855 – April 4, 1861
Preceded byJohn Jay Jackson, Jr.
Succeeded byn/a
Circuit Judge for Wood County
In office
Succeeded byn/a
Circuit Judge for Wood County
In office
Succeeded byn/a
Personal details
Arthur Inghram Boreman

(1823-07-24)July 24, 1823
Waynesburg, Pennsylvania
DiedApril 19, 1896(1896-04-19) (aged 72)
Parkersburg, West Virginia
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Laurane Tanner Bullock Boreman

Arthur Inghram Boreman (July 24, 1823 – April 19, 1896) was an American lawyer, politician and judge who helped found the U.S. state of West Virginia. Raised in Tyler County, West Virginia, he served as the state's first Governor, and a United States Senator, as well as represented Wood County in the Virginia House of Delegates, and served as a circuit judge before and after his federal service.[1][2]

Early and family life

Boreman was born in Waynesburg, Pennsylvania. When Arthur was four, his family relocated to Middlebourne, Tyler County, which was then part of Virginia, and is today part of West Virginia.

On November 30, 1864, he married Laurane Tanner Bullock, widow of a Union soldier, with two sons. They would also have two daughters.[3]


Arthur Boreman read law with an elder brother and James McNeil Stephenson and was admitted to the Virginia bar in 1845. The following year he moved to Parkersburg. Wood County voters elected Boreman as one of their representatives in the Virginia House of Delegates. Re-elected several times, he served in that part-time position from 1855 until 1861. Although not an abolitionist, but rather a Unionist, Boreman tried unsuccessfully to prevent Virginia's secession from the Union in April 1861.

In May 1861, Wood County voters elected him to the Second Wheeling Convention, and fellow delegates elected him as the convention's President. That convention established the Restored Government of Virginia, which the following year led to establishment of a separate State of West Virginia. His elder brother William I. Boreman (1816-1892) represented Doddridge and Tyler Counties in that convention, and his youngest brother Jacob S. Boreman (1831-1913) served in the Union Army before moving to Utah and becoming a judge.

Possible identifications includes, L to R: 1st-Arthur Boreman; 3rd-Andrew Wilson; 4th D.D.T. Farnsworth; 5th- Henry Dering; 6th- Gibson Cranmer.

In 1863, West Virginia voters elected Arthur Boreman as the new state's first governor. He served from 1863 to 1869, winning re-election in 1864 and 1866 (although Virginia's constitutions had forbidden such successive terms). During his third term, Boreman won election to the U.S. Senate to replace Peter G. Van Winkle, and he served from 1869 to 1875. He helped lead efforts to pass the 15th Amendment. When Democrats regained power in West Virginia, Boreman returned to his law practice. He also helped organize recovery efforts after the 1884 Ohio River floods.[4]

In 1888, he was elected the 5th circuit judge and took the bench the following year. He continued to serve until his death seven years later, exhausted after a late trip home from Elizabeth, the Wirt County seat.[5][6]

Death and legacy

Grave marker of Arthur Boreman at Parkersburg Memorial Gardens
Grave marker of Arthur Boreman at Parkersburg Memorial Gardens

Boreman died in Parkersburg in 1896, survived by his wife, two stepsons and daughter.[7] After services at his home and at the Methodist Episcopal Church were he had long served as a lay leader, he was buried at the Odd Fellows cemetery in Clarksburg.[8] His brother Jacob Smith Boremon became a Justice of the Utah territory Supreme Court and his nephew Herbert Stephenson Boreman (1897-1982) served as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.[9] Boreman, West Virginia is named for the family.

Boreman Hall, a dormitory on the campus of West Virginia University, is named after him. In addition, Arthur I. Boreman Elementary School is named in his honor in the Tyler County town of Middlebourne, and formerly two elementary schools in the Kanawha County town of Cross Lanes and the outlying Parkersburg area in Wood County were named in his honor.


  1. ^ Otis K. Rice, West Virginia: The State and its People (Parson, West Virginia: McClain Printing Co, 1972) p. 203
  2. ^ Allen, Bernard L. "Arthur Ingraham Boreman." e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 16 May 2016. Web. 21 August 2019 available at
  3. ^ "West Virginia's First Ladies," West Virginia Division of Culture and History, June 2007.
  4. ^ supported the ratification of the 15th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, guaranteeing the right to vote regardless of race. Upon receiving word of its ratification, he telegramed Robert W. Simmons, the leader of the black community in Parkersburg, and a celebration was staged in that city in 1870. Five years later, Boreman’s term as senator ended, and he returned to the private practice of law in his hometown. In 1884, he organized a relief effort to assist the victims of a devastating Ohio River flood.
  5. ^ Rice p. 203
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^

External links

Party political offices
First Republican nominee for Governor of West Virginia
1863, 1864, 1866
Succeeded by
William E. Stevenson
Political offices
Preceded by
Francis Harrison Pierpont
as Governor of the Restored Government of Virginia
Governor of West Virginia
Succeeded by
Daniel D. T. Farnsworth
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Peter G. Van Winkle
 U.S. senator (Class 1) from West Virginia
Served alongside: Waitman T. Willey, Henry G. Davis
Succeeded by
Allen T. Caperton
This page was last edited on 2 August 2020, at 15:17
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