BLAIR, Francis Preston, Jr.



BLAIR, Francis Preston, Jr., a Representative and a Senator from Missouri; born in Lexington, Ky., on February 19, 1821; as a child moved with his father to Washington, D.C.; attended private schools and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; graduated from Princeton College in 1841; studied law at Transylvania University, Lexington, Ky.; admitted to the bar in 1842 and commenced practice in St. Louis in 1843; enlisted as a private during the Mexican War; served as attorney general of the Territory of New Mexico; resumed the practice of law in St. Louis; member, State house of representatives 1852-1856; elected as a Republican to the Thirty-fifth Congress (March 4, 1857-March 3, 1859); successfully contested the election of John R. Barret to the Thirty-sixth Congress and served from June 8 to June 25, 1860, when he resigned; unsuccessful candidate for reelection to the Thirty-sixth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by his own resignation; elected to the Thirty-seventh Congress and served from March 4, 1861, until his resignation in July 1862 to become a colonel in the Union Army; chairman, Committee on Military Affairs (Thirty-seventh Congress); presented credentials as a Member-elect to the Thirty-eighth Congress and served from March 4, 1863, to June 10, 1864, when he was succeeded by Samuel Knox, who contested the election; unsuccessful Democratic candidate for Vice President of the United States in 1868; member, State house of representatives 1870; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Charles D. Drake and served from January 20, 1871, to March 3, 1873; was not a candidate for reelection; State insurance commissioner in 1874; died in St. Louis, Mo., July 8, 1875; interment in Bellefontaine Cemetery.

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

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External Research Collections

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library

Springfield, IL
Papers: Correspondence in Lewis Baldwin Parsons papers, 1656-1908.

Cornell University
Rare Book and Manuscript Collections

Ithaca, NY
Papers: January 17, 1856. 1 item. Letter to Hannibal Hamlin discussing fund raising for John C. Fre1mont's campaign.

Filson Club Historical Society

Louisville, KY
Papers: 1855. 1 letter.

Harvard University
Houghton Library

Cambridge, MA
Papers: Correspondence in Edward Lillie Pierce papers, 1852-1886.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: In Blair family papers, 1793-1933. 27.6 linear feet. Includes family correspondence, particularly letters to his wife written while serving as a Union Army officer during the Civil War; letters sent and received (1853-1884); and miscellaneous material (1839-1884) including financial and legal papers, military papers, political files, printed material, notes, and memoranda. Available on 47 microfilm reels. Finding aid.

Missouri Historical Society

St. Louis, MO
Papers: 1817-1959. Ca. 100 items. Correspondence between father and sons concerning state and national politics, family and financial matters, the Civil War, military affairs, and appointments; material on Blair Monument Association; photographs; and portraits.

Missouri State Archives

Jefferson City, MO
Papers: Correspondence and miscellaneous items in various collections.

Pierpont Morgan Library

New York, NY
Papers: 1862-1871. 6 items.

University of North Carolina
Southern Historical Collection

Chapel Hill, NC
Papers: June 6, 1865. 1 item (photocopy). Letter from Varina Howell Davis to U.S. General Blair relating in detail the capture of her husband, Jefferson Davis, complaining of his treatment in prison, and describing her own circumstances. Xavier University McDonald Memorial Library Cincinnati, OH
Papers: 1 item (June 8, 1840) in Moses Dawson collection of political letters of the Jackson period, 1811-1845.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Croly, David Goodman. Seymour and Blair, Their Lives and Services with an Appendix Containing a History of Reconstruction. New York: Richardson & Co., 1868.

Lane, Wheaton J. "Francis Preston Blair, Jr. [1821-1875]: Border Statesman." In The Lives of Eighteen from Princeton, edited by Willard Thorp, pp. 243-64. 1946. Reprint. Freeport, NY: Books for Libraries Press, 1968.

Phillips, Christopher. "The Radical Crusade: Blair, Lyon, and the Advent of the Civil War in Missouri." Gateway Heritage 10 (Spring 1990): 22-43.

Rollins, C.B. "Some Impressions of Frank P. Blair." Missouri Historical Review 24 (April 1930): 352-58.

Smith, William Ernest. The Francis Preston Blair Family in Politics. 2 vols. 1933. Reprint. New York: Da Capo Press, 1969.

Wurthman, Leonard B., Jr. "Frank Blair: Lincoln's Congressional Spokesman." Missouri Historical Review 64 (April 1970): 263-88.

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