Biography of Whitelaw Reid
Famous American Biographies

WHITELAW REID. - Among the many men who have adorned the field of journalism in the United States, few stand out with more prominence than the scholar, author and editor whose name heads this article. Born at Xenia, Greene county, Ohio, October 27, 1837, he graduated at Miami University in 1856. For about a year he was superintendent of the graded schools of South Charleston, Ohio, after which he purchased the "Xenia News," which he edited for about two years. This paper was the first one outside of Illinois to advocate the nomination of Abraham Lincoln, Mr. Reid having been a Republican since the birth of that party in 1856. After taking an active part in the campaign, in the winter of 1860-61, he went to the state capital as correspondent of three daily papers. At the close of the session of the legislature he became city editor of the "Cincinnati Gazette," and at the breaking out of the war went to the front as a correspondent for that journal. For a time he served on the staff of General Morris in West Virginia, with the rank of captain. Shortly after he was on the staff of General Rosecrans, and, under the name of "Agate," wrote most graphic descriptions of the movements in the field, especially that of the battle of Pittsburg Landing. In the spring of 1862 Mr. Reid went to Washington and was appointed librarian to the house of representatives, and acted as correspondent of the "Cincinnati Gazette." His description of the battle of Gettysburg, written on the field, gained him added reputation. In 1865, he accompanied Chief Justice Chase on a southern tour, and published "After the War; a Southern Tour." During the next two years he was engaged in cotton planting in Louisiana and Alabama, and published "Ohio in the War." In 1868 he returned to the "Cincinnati Gazette," becoming one of its leading editors. The, same year he accepted the invitation of Horace Greeley and became one of the staff on the "New York Tribune." Upon the death of Mr. Greeley in 1872, Mr. Reid became editor and chief proprietor of that paper. In 1878 he was tendered the United States mission to Berlin, but declined. The offer was again made by the Garfield administration, but again he declined. In 1878 he was elected by the New York legislature regent of the university, to succeed General John A. Dix. Under the Harrison administration he served as United States minister to France, and in 1892 was the Republican nominee for the vice presidency of the United States. Among other works published by him were the "Schools of Journalism," "The Scholar in Politics," "Some Newspaper Tendencies," and "Town Hall Suggestions."

A Biographical Record
Of Schuyler County, New York
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
New York and Chicago 1903.


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