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History and GovernmentCongressional BiographiesTerritory of Dakota / South Dakota

Oscar Sherman GIFFORD

(1842-1913)

GIFFORD, Oscar Sherman, a Delegate from the Territory of Dakota and a Representative from South Dakota; born in Watertown, Jefferson County, N.Y., October 20, 1842; moved with his parents to Wisconsin, who settled in Rock County, thence to Brown County, Ill., in 1853; attended the common schools and the local academy at Beloit, Wis.; served in the Union Army as a private in the Elgin (Ill.) Battery 1863-1865; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1871 and commenced practice in Canton, Territory of Dakota (now South Dakota); district attorney for Lincoln County in 1874; mayor of Canton in 1881 and 1882; member of the State constitutional convention of South Dakota which convened at Sioux Falls September 7, 1883; elected as a Republican a Delegate to the Forty-ninth and Fiftieth Congresses (March 4, 1885-March 3, 1889); upon the admission of South Dakota as a State into the Union was elected as a Representative to the Fifty-first Congress and served from November 2, 1889, to March 3, 1891; was not a candidate for renomination in 1890; resumed the practice of law in Canton, S.Dak., where he died on January 16, 1913; interment in Forest Hill Cemetery.

Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1771-Present

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