Historical Highlights

Speaker of the House Joseph Warren Keifer of Ohio

April 22, 1932
Speaker of the House Joseph Warren Keifer of Ohio Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
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Serving seven non-consecutive terms in the House, Speaker of the House Joseph Keifer of Ohio was a veteran of the Civil War and the Spanish-American War.
On this date, Speaker of the House Joseph Warren Keifer of Ohio passed away at his home in Springfield, Ohio. A decorated veteran of the Civil War, Keifer came to Washington in 1877 as a Member of the 45th Congress (1877–1879). Successfully re-elected to the two succeeding Congress, Representative Keifer was elected Speaker of the House in the 47th Congress (1881–1883). When he mounted the Speaker’s rostrum, he assured the Congress that he would, “with my best ability, guided by a sincere and honest purpose, to discharge the duties belonging to the office with which you have clothed me.” Despite his success in Congress, Keifer’s time as speaker was short lived. He fell out of favor with the party and unhappily served in the 48th Congress (1883–1885). An unsuccessful candidate for re-nomination to the 49th Congress (1885–1887), the Congressman returned to the military and later served in the Spanish–American War. After retiring from the military, he sought and won his seat back in Congress, from the 59th through 61st Congresses (1905–1911). An unsuccessful candidate for re-election in 1910, Keifer returned to Ohio and resumed his banking business until his death at the age of 96.

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