Biography of Samuel J. Tilden
Celebrated Americans

SAMUEL J. TILDEN. - Among the great statesmen whose names adorn the pages of American history may be found that of the subject of this sketch. Known as a lawyer of highest ability, his greatest claim to immortality will ever he in his successful battle against the corrupt rings of his native state and the elevation of the standard of official life.

Samuel J. Tilden was born in New Lebanon, New York, February 9, 1814. He pursued his academic studies at Yale College and the University of New York, tak ing the course of law at the latter. He was admitted to the bar in 1841. His rare ability as a thinker and writer upon public topics attracted the attention of President Van Buren, of whose policy and administration he became an active and efficient champion. He made for himself a high place in his profession and amassed quite a fortune as the result of his industry and judgment. During the days of his greatest professional labor he was ever one of the leaders and trusted counsellors of the Democratic party He was a member of the conventions to revise the state constitution, both in 1846 and 1867, and served two terms in the lower branch of the state legislature. He was one of the controlling spirits in the overthrow of the notorious "Tweed ring and the reformation of the government of the city of New York. In 1874 he was elected governor of the state of New York. While in this position he cssailed corruption in high places, successfully battling with the iniquitous "canal ring" and crushed its sway over all departments of the government. Recognizing his character and executive ability Mr. Tilden was nominated for president by the national Democratic convention in 1876. At the clection he received a much larger popular vote than his opponent, and 184 uncontested electoral votes. There being some electoral votes contested, a commission appointed by congress decided in favor of the Republican electors and Mr. Hayes, the candidate of that party was declared elected. In 1880, the Democratic party, feeling that Mr. Tilden had been lawfully elected to the presidency tendered the nomination for the same office to Mr. Tilden, but he declined, retiring from all public functions, owing to failing health. He died August 4, 1886. By will he bequeathed several millions of dollars toward the founding of public libraries in New York City, Yonkers, etc.

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


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