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WRIGHT, Silas, Jr.



WRIGHT, Silas, Jr., a Representative and a Senator from New York; born in Amherst, Mass., May 24, 1795; moved with his father to Wyebridge, Vt., in 1796; graduated from Middlebury (Vt.) College in 1815; moved to Sandy Hill, Washington County, N.Y., in 1816; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1819 and commenced practice in Canton, St. Lawrence County, N.Y.; surrogate of St. Lawrence County 1821-1824; member, State senate 1824-1827; appointed brigadier general of State militia in 1827; elected to the Twentieth Congress and served from March 4, 1827, to February 16, 1829, when he resigned; successfully contested the election of George Fisher to the Twenty-first Congress, but declined to qualify; comptroller of the State of New York 1829-1833; elected to the United States Senate in 1833 as a Jacksonian (later Democrat) to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of William L. Marcy; reelected in 1837 and served from January 4, 1833, to November 26, 1844, when he resigned, having been elected Governor; chairman, Committee on Finance (Twenty-fourth through Twenty-sixth Congresses); declined the Democratic nomination for Vice President of the United States in 1844; Governor of New York 1844-1846; unsuccessful candidate for reelection; died in Canton, N.Y., August 27, 1847; interment in Silas Wright Cemetery (formerly Old Canton) in Canton, New York.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

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External Research Collections

Boston Public Library

Boston, MA
Papers: 4 letters.

Brooklyn Historical Society

Brooklyn, NY
Papers: April 4, 1832; September 2, 1841; February 23, 1843. 3 letters.

Cornell University
Rare Books and Manuscript Collections

Ithaca, NY
Papers: June 17, 1840. 1 letter. To his sister Mrs. Eleanor Biglow, regarding family news.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: 1842-1845. 4 items.

New England Historic Genealogical Society

Boston, MA
Papers: Correspondence in William Foster papers, 1734-1879.

New-York Historical Society

New York, NY
Papers: 1828-1847. 17 items.

New York Public Library

New York, NY
Papers: Ca. 270 items of correspondence (ca. 1823-1848) scattered in various collections.

New York State Library
Manuscripts and Special Collections

Albany, NY
Papers: 1822-1847. 65 items. Correspondence (1822-1847), commission, deed, and proclamation.

Pierpont Morgan Library

New York, NY
Papers: 1 item (1845); and 1 letter (April 23, 1835) apologizing for a remark meant in jest in the Gilder Lehrman collection. Finding aid.

St. Lawrence County Historical Association

Canton, NY
Papers: 1820-1847. Ca. 200 items. Miscellaneous personal correspondence, private papers, and memorabilia.

St. Lawrence University
Special Collections

Canton, NY
Papers: 1828-1847. 67 items. Personal letters, many commenting on politics.

University of Rochester
Rush Rhees Library

Rochester, NY
Papers: 2 letters by and 1 to Wright (1831-1841) in various collections. Finding aid.

Virginia Historical Society

Richmond, VA
Papers: Correspondence with William Henry Roane in Harrison family papers, 1756-1893.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Chancellor, William Estabrook. A Life of Silas Wright, 1795-1847: United States Senator from New York 1833-1844, Governor of the State of New York 1844-1846. New York: W.C. O'Donnell, Jr., 1913.

Garraty, John Arthur. Silas Wright. 1949. Reprint. New York: AMS Press, 1970.

Gillet, Ransom Hooker. The Life and Times of Silas Wright. 2 vols. Albany: Argus Co., 1874.

Hammond, Jabez Delano. Life and Times of Silas Wright. New York: A.S. Barnes & Co., 1848.

Jenkins, John Stillwell. The Life of Silas Wright. Auburn: J.E. Beardsley, 1847.

Kennedy, Mary C. "Silas Wright and New York Politics, 1795-1847." Ph.D. dissertation, University of Chicago, 1950.

Mallam, William D. Silas Wright--The Farmer Statesman. Canton, NY: St. Lawrence County Historical Association at the Silas Wright Museum, 1994. Originally published in the St. Lawrence County Historical Association Quarterly (October 1982): as "Silas Wright of Lawrence County."

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