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Lyman Trumbull

Trumbull, Lyman, 1813–96, U.S. Senator from Illinois (1855–73), b. Colchester, Conn. He taught school in Georgia, was admitted to the bar, and in 1837 moved to Illinois. After serving in the state legislature (1840), as Illinois secretary of state (1841–43), and as a justice of the state supreme court (1848–53), he was elected (1854) to the House of Representatives but was appointed to the Senate before Congress convened. Formerly a Democrat, he became a Republican and a staunch supporter of Abraham Lincoln. Often allied with the radical Republicans on Reconstruction measures, he nevertheless refused to follow them in their attempt to remove Andrew Johnson from office. In the impeachment trial he was one of the handful of Republican Senators who supported the President. In 1872 he was a leader of the Liberal Republican party, but eventually returned to the Democratic fold. He was one of the counsels for Samuel J. Tilden in the contested Hayes-Tilden election of 1876.

See biographies by M. M. Krug (1965) and R. J. Roske (1979).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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