Richard J. Oglesby

Quill platform ID: p6972.

(July 25, 1824 — April 24, 1899) Richard James Oglesby was a farmer, carpenter, rope-maker, miner, lawyer, and politician. Oglesby was born in Floydsburg, Kentucky in 1824. After being orphaned, he moved to Illinois to be raised by an uncle. Oglesby received limited schooling in his childhood but learned trades such as rope-making and carpentry. He later worked in those trades, and as a farmer. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1845 and practiced law in Sullivan, Illinois. After serving in the Mexican War, Oglesby worked as a miner in California for a two years. He was elected as a Republican to the United States Senate during the Thirty-Sixth Congress, but only served for the first session before resigning to fight in the Union Army during the Civil War. He attained the ranks of colonel, brigadier general, and major general while serving in the Illinois Volunteer Infantry. After the Civil War, he was elected Governor of Illinois and served in that capacity from 1865 to 1869. He was again elected as Governor in 1872 but only served until 1873, when he was again elected to the United States Senate. Oglesby served as a Republican in the Senate from March 4, 1873 to March 3, 1879, after which he served as Governor of Illinois for four more years from 1885 to 1889. [Source: “Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1774 - Present,” available at]

Member of Illinois Delegation—The Civil Rights Act of 1875.

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