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History and GovernmentCongressional BiographiesMassachusetts

Harrison Gray OTIS

(1765-1848)
Senate Years of Service:
1817-1822
Party:
Federalist

OTIS, Harrison Gray, (son of Samuel Allyne Otis), a Representative and a Senator from Massachusetts; born in Boston, Mass., on October 8, 1765; graduated from Harvard University in 1783; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1786 and commenced practice in Boston; elected to the Massachusetts general court in 1794 and 1795; appointed by President George Washington district attorney for the district of Massachusetts in 1796; elected as a Federalist to the Fifth and Sixth Congresses (March 4, 1797-March 3, 1801); was not a candidate for renomination in 1800; appointed United States district attorney for Massachusetts by President John Adams 1801-1802; member and speaker of the State house of representatives 1802-1805; member, State senate 1805-1813, 1814-1817, and was its president 1805-1806, 1808-1811; overseer of Harvard University 1810-1823; delegate to the Hartford convention in 1814; judge of the court of common pleas 1814-1818; elected as a Federalist to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1817, to May 30, 1822, when he resigned; unsuccessful candidate for mayor of Boston in 1822 and for governor of Massachusetts in 1823; fellow of Harvard University 1823-1825; mayor of Boston 1829-1832; retired from public life; died in Boston, Mass., October 28, 1848; interment in Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Mass.

Bibliography

Dictionary of American Biography; Morison, Samuel Eliot. Harrison Gray Otis, 1765-1848: The Urbane Federalist. 1913. Rev. ed. (2 vols in 1). Boston: Houghton, Mifflin, 1969; Otis, Harrison Gray. Otis’ Letters in Defence of the Hartford Convention, and the People of Massachusetts. Boston: S. Gardner, 1824.

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

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