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Dwight Foster (politician, born 1757)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Dwight Foster
United States Senator
from Massachusetts
In office
June 6, 1800 – March 3, 1803
Preceded bySamuel Dexter
Succeeded byTimothy Pickering
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts
In office
March 4, 1793 – June 6, 1800
Preceded byBenjamin Goodhue (2nd)
Henry Dearborn (4th-GT)
George Thatcher (4th-GT)
Peleg Wadsworth (4th-GT)
Succeeded byWilliam Lyman (2nd)
Levi Lincoln Sr. (4th)
Constituency2nd district (1793–95)
4th district (1795–1800)
9th Sheriff of
Worcester County, Massachusetts
In office
Preceded byJohn Sprague
Succeeded byWilliam Caldwell
Member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives
In office
In office
Personal details
Born(1757-12-07)December 7, 1757
Brookfield, Province of Massachusetts Bay, British America
DiedApril 29, 1823(1823-04-29) (aged 65)
Brookfield, Massachusetts, U.S.
Resting placeBrookfield Cemetery
Brookfield, Massachusetts, U.S.
Political partyFederalist
Spouse(s)Rebecca Faulkner
RelationsTheodore Foster
Dwight Foster MA
ChildrenAlfred Dwight Foster
Alma materBrown University
Harvard University

Dwight Foster (December 7, 1757 – April 29, 1823) was an American lawyer and politician from Massachusetts. He served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives, the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate.

Early life

Foster was born in Brookfield in the Province of Massachusetts Bay, and attended the common schools in Brookfield. He graduated from the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations (the former name of Brown University) at Providence in 1774.[1] He then studied law and was admitted to the bar association in 1778. He remained in Rhode Island to practice law, beginning his law practice in Providence. He received his Master's degree from Harvard University in 1784.[2]


After returning to Massachusetts, Foster held various positions in the government. He served as justice of the peace for Worcester County from 1781 to 1823, as special justice of the court of common pleas in 1792, and as sheriff of Worcester County in 1792.[3] In 1791, he was elected as a Federalist candidate to the Massachusetts House of Representatives.

He was elected as a United States House of Representatives to the 3rd United States Congress in 1793, and was reelected to the three succeeding Congresses. He served in Congress from March 4, 1793, until his resignation on June 6, 1800.[4] While in Congress, he was Chairman of the United States Senate Committee on Claims.

In 1799, he was a delegate to the State constitutional convention[5] and on June 6, 1800, he was elected to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused by Samuel Dexter's resignation.[6] He served in the Senate until his resignation on March 3, 1803. He was a member of the State House from 1808 to 1809 and a member of the Massachusetts Governor's Council in 1818.[7]

In 1813 he was elected a member of the American Antiquarian Society.[8]

Foster died in Brookfield on April 29, 1823, aged 65,[9] and is interred in Brookfield Cemetery there.[10]

Family life

Foster's father was Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Justice Jedediah Foster, who graduated from Harvard University in 1744.[11] Foster married Rebecca Faulkner on May 7, 1783, and they had one son, Alfred Dwight Foster.[12]

He was the brother of U.S. Senator Theodore Foster,[13] and was the grandfather and namesake of Massachusetts Attorney General and Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Justice Dwight Foster MA.[14]


  1. ^ Brown University (1914). Historical Catalogue of Brown University. Brown University. p. 709.
  2. ^ Harvard University (1900). Quinquennial Catalogue of the Officers and Graduates of Harvard University. The University. p. 316.
  3. ^ Pierce, Clifton Pierce (1899). Foster genealogy, Part 1. Press o W.B. Conkey company. p. 64.
  4. ^ Poore, Benjamin Perley (1878). The Political Register and Congressional Directory: A Statistical Record of the Federal Officials, Legislative, Executive, and Judicial, of the United States of America, 1776-1878. Houghton, Osgood. p. 399.
  5. ^ Wilson, James Grant and Fiske, John Fiske (1888). Appletons' Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Volume 2. Gale Research Company. p. 511.
  6. ^ Poore, Benjamin Perley (1878). The Political Register and Congressional Directory: A Statistical Record of the Federal Officials, Legislative, Executive, and Judicial, of the United States of America, 1776-1878. Houghton, Osgood. p. 399.
  7. ^ Brown University (1914). Historical Catalogue of Brown University. Brown University. p. 55.
  8. ^ American Antiquarian Society Members Directory
  9. ^ Pierce, Clifton Pierce (1899). Foster genealogy, Part 1. Press o W.B. Conkey company. p. 64.
  10. ^ "Hughes-Bemis & Evans-Thor(e)son Families". Retrieved April 3, 2014.
  11. ^ Miller, J. (1885). Rhode Island Historical Society Collections, Volume 7. J. Miller. p. 111.
  12. ^ "Hughes-Bemis & Evans-Thor(e)son Families". Retrieved April 3, 2014.
  13. ^ "FOSTER, Theodore, (1752 - 1828)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved April 3, 2014.
  14. ^ Mull, Carol E. (2010). The Underground Railroad in Michigan. McFarland. p. 66. ISBN 9780786455638.

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 2nd congressional district

alongside:William Lyman, Theodore Sedgwick, Artemas Ward
on a general ticket
Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 4th congressional district

Succeeded by
U.S. Senate
Preceded by  U.S. senator (Class 2) from Massachusetts
Served alongside: Jonathan Mason
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 27 July 2022, at 08:07
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