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Speaker of the House John Carlisle of Kentucky

September 05, 1834
Speaker of the House John Carlisle of Kentucky Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
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Speaker of the House John Carlisle of Kentcuky
On this date, Speaker of the House John Carlisle, who devoted his career to public service, was born in Campbell (now Kenton) County, Kentucky. First elected to the 45th Congress (1877–1879) in 1876, Carlisle gained notoriety in the House by spearheading amendments to repeal Reconstruction legislation. Carlisle quickly rose in the House leadership earning a place on the powerful Committee on Ways and Means, where he worked to lower the tariff. Congressman Abram Hewitt of New York reflected on Carlisle, stating, “He is an intellectual slot machine. Drop a problem in and, instantly, its solutions come forth.” When Democrats gained control of the chamber in the 48th Congress (1883–1885), the House elected Carlisle Speaker. Democrats re-elected him Speaker in the 49th Congress (1885–1887), and again in the 50th Congress (1887–1889). After the House changed party control in the 51st Congress (1889–1891), the Kentucky state legislature elected Carlisle to a vacancy in the U.S. Senate. He resigned from the House and served nearly three years in the Senate before leaving to become Secretary of the Treasury.

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