Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County, Texas. Page: 112 of 1,110
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PR ESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES.
Afterward he returned to Hiram as President.
In his youthful and therefore zealous
piety, he exercised his talents occasionally
as a preacher of the Gospel. He was a
man of strong moral and religious convictions,
and as soon as he began to look into
politics, he saw innumerable points that
could be improved. He also studied law,
and was admitted to the bar in I859.
November ii, 1858, Mr. Garfield married
Miss Lucretia Rudolph, who ever afterward
proved a worthy consort in all the
stages of her husband's career. They had
seven children, five of whom are still living.
It was in 1859 that Garfield made his
first political speeches, in Hiram and the
neighboring villages, and three years later
he began to speak at county mass-meetings,
being received everywhere with popular
favor. He was elected to the State Senate
this year, taking his seat in January, I860.
On the breaking out of the war of the
Rebellion in i86I, Mr. Garfield resolved to
fight as he had talked, and accordingly he
enlisted to defend the old flag, receiving
his commission as Lieutenant-Colonel of the
Forty-second Regiment of the Ohio Volunteer
Infantry, August 14, that year. He
was immediately thrown into active service,
and before he had ever seen a gun fired in
action he was placed in command of four
regiments of infantry and eight companies
of cavalry, charged with the work of driving
the Confederates, headed by Humphrey
Marshall, from his native State, Kentucky.
This task was speedily accomplished, although
against great odds. On account'of
his success, President Lincoln commissioned
him Brigadier-General, January I , 1862;
and, as he had been the youngest man in
the Ohio Senate two years before, so now
he was the youngest General in the army.
He was with General Buell's army at Shiloh,
also in its operations around Corinth
and its march through Alabama. Next, he
was detailed as a member of the general
court-martial for the trial of General FitzJohn
Porter, and then ordered to report to
General Rosecrans, when he was assigned
to the position of Chief of Staff. His military
history closed with his brilliant services
at Chickamauga, where he won the
stars of Major-General.
In the fall of I862, without any effort on
his part, he was elected as a Representative
to Congress, from that section of Ohio
which had been represented for sixty years
mainly by two men-Elisha Whittlesey and
Joshua R. Giddings. Again, he was the
youngest member of that body, and continued
there by successive re-elections, as
Representative or Senator, until he was
elected President in I880. During his life
in Congress he compiled and published by
his speeches, there and elsewhere, more
information on the issues of the day, especially
on one side, than any other member.
June 8, I880, at the National Republican
Convention held in Chicago, General Garfield
was nominated for the Presidency, in
preference to the old war-horses, Blaine
and Grant; and although many of the Republican
party felt sore over the failure of
their respective heroes to obtain the nomination,
General Garfield was elected by a
fair popular majority. He was duly inaugurated,
but on July 2 following, before
he had fairly got started in his administration,
he was fatally shot by a half-demented
assassin. After very painful and protracted
suffering, he died September I9, I88I, lamented
by all the American people. Never
before in the history of this country had
anything occurred which so nearly froze
the blood of the Nation, for the moment, as
the awful act of Guiteau, the murderer.
He was duly tried, convicted and put to
death on the gallows.
The lamented Garfield was succeeded by
the Vice-President, General Arthur, who
seemed to endeavor to carry out the policy
inaugurated by his predecessor.
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Lewis Publishing Company. Memorial and Biographical History of Dallas County, Texas., book, 1892; Chicago, Illinois. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth20932/m1/112/: accessed May 27, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Dallas Public Library.