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John Creswell (New York Times)

Obituary

“John A. J. Creswell,” New York Times, December 24, 1891, p. 5: 2

JOHN A. J. CRESWELL.
 
John A. J. Creswell died yesterday morning at Elkton, Md.  He was on of Maryland’s most distinguished sons; was born in Port Deposit in that State March 18, 1828.  In his early youth he enjoyed all of the educational advantages that money could procure in the vicinity of his home, his parents being possessed of abundant means.  He was graduated at Dickinson College in Carlisle, Penn., in 1848, and bore off the highest honors of his class.  At the age twenty years he entered upon the study of the law, and two years later was admitted to the bar.  He was an energetic as well as capable practitioner and it was not long before he had built up a practice which gave him rank as one of the foremost lawyers in Maryland.
With the casting of his first vote Mr. Creswell began and earnest and enthusiastic study of politics.  His first votes were cast for the Whig Party, with which he continued to act until that organization’s dissolution.  He was nominated by the Whigs of Cecil County as a delegate to the General Convention held in Maryland in 1850 for the purpose of remodeling the Constitution held in Maryland in 1850 for the purpose of remodeling the Constitution of that Commonwealth.  Although he ran against the most popular Democrat in a Democratic county, he was defeated only by a very small majority.  Upon the breaking up of the Whig Party, young Creswell voted with the Democratic Party until the breaking out of the war of the rebellion.  When he saw the Maryland Democrats were in favor of secession, he promptly cut loose from them and declared himself in favor of the Union.  He labored earnestly in behalf of a peaceful settlement of the national troubles.
In the Fall of 1861 Mr. Creswell was elected to represent his native county in the Legislature of the State, and in 1862 he was appointed Adjutant General of the State of Maryland.  In the following year he was chosen a member of the House of Representatives, where he made his mark by an eloquent speech in favor of the abolition of slavery.  He was elected United States Senator in 1864, to fill the unexpired term of Gov. Hicks.  While in the Senate he was selected by Congress to deliver a eulogy upon the life of Henry Winter Davis.  He was once of the first members of Congress to resist the attempts of President Johnson to defy the will of the people.  Mr. Creswell was an ardent admirer of President Lincoln, and he was a member of the National Republican Convention in Baltimore which renominated Lincoln.  He was also a member of the national Convention that nominated Gen. Grant for the Presidency.
After General Grant became President Mr. Creswell’s political friends in Maryland put him forward for a Cabinet place, and listening to the advice of ex-Vice President Hamlin, Vice President Colfex, Senator Ben Wade, and other distinguished Republicans, President Grant appointed him Postmaster General, and he filled the office acceptably.
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