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James W. Wadsworth

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

James W. Wadsworth
Member of the
U.S. House of Representatives
from New York
In office
November 8, 1881 – March 3, 1885
Preceded byElbridge G. Lapham
Succeeded bySereno E. Payne
Constituency27th district
In office
March 4, 1891 – March 3, 1907
Preceded byJohn G. Sawyer
Succeeded byPeter A. Porter
Constituency31st district (1891–93)
30th district (1893–1903)
34th district (1903–07)
New York State Comptroller
In office
January 1, 1880 – December 31, 1881
GovernorAlonzo B. Cornell
Preceded byFrederic P. Olcott
Succeeded byIra Davenport
Member of the New York State Assembly from Livingston County
In office
January 1, 1878 – December 31, 1879
Preceded byJonathan B. Morey
Succeeded byArchibald Kennedy
Personal details
James Wolcott Wadsworth

(1846-10-12)October 12, 1846
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
DiedDecember 24, 1926(1926-12-24) (aged 80)
Washington, D.C.
Resting placeTemple Hill Cemetery, Geneseo, New York
Political partyRepublican
Louise Travers
(m. 1876)
ChildrenJames W. Wadsworth, Jr.
Parent(s)James S. Wadsworth
Mary Craig Wharton
EducationHopkins School
Military service
AllegianceUnited States of America
Branch/serviceUnited States Army
Union Army
Years of service1864–1865
RankBrevet Major
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War

James Wolcott Wadsworth (October 12, 1846 – December 24, 1926)[1] was an American farmer, soldier and statesman.

Early life

Wadsworth was born in Philadelphia to General James Samuel Wadsworth and Mary Craig (née Wharton) Wadsworth. His brothers were Charles Frederick Wadsworth and Craig Wharton Wadsworth, the father of Craig Wharton Wadsworth, Jr. His elder sister, Cornelia Wadsworth Ritchie Adair became prominent as matriarch of Glenveagh Castle in County Donegal, Ireland, and the large JA Ranch in the Texas Panhandle.[2] His younger sister, Elizabeth S. Wadsworth, married firstly Arthur Post in 1875, and secondly in 1889, as a widow, Arthur Smith-Barry, 1st Baron Barrymore, becoming Lady Barrymore.

His paternal grandfather, James Wadsworth, and his grandfather's brother, William Wadsworth, moved from Durham, Connecticut, and were the original settlers of Geneseo.[3][4][5]

He was educated at the Hopkins School in New Haven, Connecticut, preparing to attend Yale, however, he did not attend, instead joining the Army in 1864.[6]


In 1864, Wadsworth joined the Union army and served during the Civil War. On January 24, 1865, he was awarded a brevet major for "gallant and meritorious service at the Battle of Five Forks, Va." He honorably mustered out June 25, 1865.[6]

Political career

He was a member of the New York State Assembly (Livingston Co.) in 1878 and 1879. He served as the New York State Comptroller from January 1, 1880, to December 31, 1881, elected at the New York state election, 1879.

He was elected to the 47th United States Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Elbridge G. Lapham, and re-elected to the 48th United States Congresses, serving from December 5, 1881, to March 3, 1885. In 1885,[7] he ran again for State Comptroller but was defeated by Democrat Alfred C. Chapin.[8]

He ran again in 1890[9] and was elected the 52nd, 53rd, 54th, 55th, 56th, 57th, 58th and 59th United States Congresses, serving from March 4, 1891, to March 3, 1907.[10][11][12][13][14] He was talked about as a candidate for Governor of New York, but did not run.[15][16] In 1906, he was defeated for re-election by Peter A. Porter.[17]

He was a delegate to the 1884 and 1904 Republican National Conventions.[18] He was a delegate to the New York State Constitutional Convention of 1915.[19]

Personal life

On September 14, 1876,[6] he was married to Louise Travers (1848–1931),[20][21] the daughter of wealthy New York lawyer, William R. Travers,[22][23] and granddaughter of U.S. Senator and U.S. Minister to the United Kingdom Reverdy Johnson.[24] Together, they were the parents of:[25]

Wadsworth died on December 24, 1926, in Washington, D.C. He was buried at the Temple Hill Cemetery in Geneseo, New York. His gravestone reads: "Soldier in the Civil War / Public Servant / Patron of Sport / Farmer all his Days".[1] His widows died in 1931.[20]


His grandson, James Jeremiah Wadsworth (1905–1984), served as United States Ambassador to the United Nations.[31] His granddaughter, Evelyn Wadsworth (1903–1972), married William Stuart Symington, Jr. (1901–1988), the first Secretary of the Air Force and a Democratic U.S. Senator from Missouri, who unsuccessfully sought the Democratic presidential nomination in 1960. His great-grandson, James Wadsworth Symington (b. 1927) served in the U.S. House of Representatives from Missouri as a Democrat and his great-great grandson, William Stuart Symington IV (b. 1952), is currently serving as the United States Ambassador to Nigeria and was the former U.S. Special Representative for the Central African Republic.[32]

Legacy and honors

He received an honorary A.M. degree from Yale University in 1898.[6]

The Wadsworth Hospital, Theatre and Chapel at the Sawtelle Veterans Home in Los Angeles, California, are named in his honor.


  1. ^ a b "The Historic Temple Hill Cemetery, Geneseo, NY". Temple Hill Cemetery. Retrieved 2023-01-11.
  2. ^ History of the JA Ranch.
  3. ^ Pearson, Henry Greenleaf (1913). James S. Wadsworth of Geneseo: brevet Major-General of United States Volunteers. New York: C. Scribner's Sons. ISBN 9780598756053. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  4. ^ Mahood, Wayne (Fall 2003). "James Wadsworth". Crooked Lake Review. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  5. ^ "WADSWORTH FAMILY COLLECTION | SUNY GENESEO" (PDF). SUNY Geneseo. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  6. ^ a b c d Leonard, John William; Mohr, William Frederick; Knox, Herman Warren; Holmes, Frank R.; Downs, 0infield Scott (1918). Who's who in New York (city and State). Who's who publications, Incorporated. Retrieved 10 May 2017.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  7. ^ "MR. WADSWORTH'S CANDIDACY" (PDF). The New York Times. 11 September 1885. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  8. ^ "IRA DAVENPORT AS CONTROLLER" (PDF). The New York Times. 26 September 1885. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  9. ^ "IN FAVOR OF HASKINS.; WYOMING COUNTY REPUBLICANS WANT HIM FOR CONGRESSMAN" (PDF). The New York Times. 30 July 1890. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  10. ^ "FASSETT -- WADSWORTH -- WHITE.; HOW FASSETT WON AND THE OTHER TWO FELL BY THE WAYSIDE" (PDF). The New York Times. 5 October 1891. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  11. ^ "THE CASE OF MR. WADSWORTH" (PDF). The New York Times. 7 October 1891. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  13. ^ "Editorial Article 1 -- No Title" (PDF). The New York Times. 6 October 1891. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  14. ^ "FIGHTING FOR SECOND PLACE; REPUBLICANS AT SARATOGA TRYING TO OVERRIDE PLATT. Vigorous Protests Against the Boss's Scheme of Nominating Wadsworth for Lieutenant Governor -- Morton's Nomination for Governor a Certainty -- Nevertheless Fassett, Russell, and Butterfield Still Consider that They Are in the Field" (PDF). The New York Times. 17 September 1894. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  15. ^ "SIX WADSWORTH COUNTIES; THE SEEMING LIMIT OF HIS FOLLOWING FOR GOVERNOR. Relations of the Candidate with Mr. Platt Are Friendly Now -- Judge Coyne's Influence in Livingston County and the Belief There that He Is a Rising Manager -- Mixed Situation in Respect to Bryan and McKinley" (PDF). The New York Times. 9 August 1896. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  16. ^ "ALDRIDGE'S FRIENDS ALARMED.; Growth of Wadsworth Boom Something They Do Not Understand" (PDF). The New York Times. 20 August 1896. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  17. ^ Times, Special To The New York (30 September 1906). "WADSWORTH NOMINATED, BUT ON COUNTY SULKS; Representative Causes Anger by Denouncing Peter A. Porter. HIS OPPONENTS NOW UNITED Democratic Convention Indorses Porter Who Is Running as an Independent Republican" (PDF). The New York Times. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  18. ^ "BELMONT MAY LEAVE STATE RACING BOARD; Higgins Likely to Appoint J.W. Wadsworth in His Place. TOO MANY TURF OFFICES? Then If Wadsworth Is Chosen a Way to Congress Will Be Cleared for Senator Stevens" (PDF). The New York Times. 20 June 1905. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  19. ^ "WADSWORTH, James Wolcott - Biographical Information". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  20. ^ a b "WADSWORTH DIES". The Burlington Hawk-Eye. May 6, 1931. p. 2. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  21. ^ Social Register: Summer | VOL. XIV No. 19. Social Register Association. 1900. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  22. ^ "JOHN TRAVERS'S ESTATE" (PDF). The New York Times. 23 May 1888. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  23. ^ "A BRILLIANT ENTERTAINMENT". The New York Times. 10 February 1885. Retrieved 11 May 2017.
  24. ^ "William R. Travers Dead; Final Rest Of A Man Universally Popular. Dying At Bermuda After A Long And Languishing Illness. Sketch Of His Career" (PDF). New York Times. March 28, 1887. Retrieved 2007-06-01. William R. Travers, well known for the last 30 years in Wall-Street, in the leading clubs, and in society in this city, died in Bermuda March 19. He was unconscious during the last hours, when his wife, his son, R.J. Travers, his daughter Susie, and his daughter-in-law, Mrs. Duer, stood around his bed.
  25. ^ Who's who in the Nation's Capital | 1921-22. Consolidated Publishing Company. 1921. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  26. ^ "WADSWORTH, James Wolcott, Jr. - Biographical Information". Retrieved 2016-11-08.
  27. ^ "SENATOR WADSWORTH; JAMES W. WADSWORTH JR.: A Biographical Sketch. By Henry F. Holthusen. Preface by the Hon. Elihu Root. Illustrated. 243 pp. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons. $2.50" (PDF). The New York Times. 31 October 1926. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  28. ^ "Fletcher Harper, Authority On Fox Hunting, Dies at 89" (PDF). The New York Times. 5 November 1963. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  29. ^ "The Spur, Vol. XII Number 1". Angus Company. 1 January 1913. Retrieved 10 May 2017. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  30. ^ Winants, Peter (August 12, 2002). Foxhunting with Melvin Poe. Derrydale Press. ISBN 9781461734673. Retrieved 10 May 2017.
  31. ^ Treaster, Joseph B. (15 March 1984). "JAMES J. WADSWORTH DIES AT 78; HEADED U.S. DELEGATION TO U.N." The New York Times. Retrieved 7 April 2017.
  32. ^ "Symington, W. Stuart". 2005-01-30. Retrieved 2016-05-12.

External links

New York State Assembly
Preceded by
Jonathan B. Morey
New York State Assembly
Livingston County

Succeeded by
Archibald Kennedy
Political offices
Preceded by New York State Comptroller
Succeeded by
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 27th congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 31st congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 30th congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 34th congressional district

Succeeded by
Preceded by Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee
Succeeded by
This page was last edited on 14 June 2023, at 06:55
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