Transcribed from volume II of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed July 2002 by Carolyn Ward.


Pierce, Franklin, 14th president of the United States—the president who signed the Kansas-Nebraska bill which made Kansas an organized territory of the United States—was born at Hillsboro, N. H., Nov. 23, 1804. His father, Benjamin Pierce, was at the battle of Lexington and continued in the Continental army until 1784, when he was honorably discharged with the rank of captain and brevet major, and two of Franklin's brothers were in the War of 1812. President Pierce received his education in the local schools, and in 1824 graduated at Bowdoin College, where he had for classmates Henry W. Longfellow, Sargent S. Prentiss, John P. Hale and Nathaniel Hawthorne. He then studied law and in 1827 was admitted to the bar. The same year he began practice at Hillsboro, and in 1829 was elected to the legislature. In 1833 he entered the lower house of Congress, where he served for four years, at the end of which time he was elected to the United States senate. This position he resigned in 1842 to resume the practice of law at Concord. When the Mexican war broke out he entered the army, and in 1847 was commissioned brigadier-general. He was a member of the New Hampshire constitutional convention of 1850, and two years later was elected president, receiving 242 electoral votes to 42 for Gen. Winfield Scott. While he was president Perry's treaty with Japan was ratified; William Walker led his filibustering expedition to Nicaragua; several routes for a Pacific railroad were explored; the territory known as the Gadsden Purchase was acquired by the United States, and the territories of Kansas and Nebraska were organized. Mr. Pierce did all he could to make Kansas a slave state, by recognizing the laws passed by the "Bogus legislature" and using the United States troops to enforce those laws. By doing so he rendered himself unpopular with the free-state advocates, but Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography says: "Some years after Pierce's death, the legislature of New Hampshire, in behalf of the state, placed his portrait beside the speaker's desk in the hall of the house of representatives at Concord. Time has softened the harsh judgment that his political foes passed upon him in the heat of party strife and civil war. . . . His integrity was above suspicion. . . . No political or personal influence could induce him to shield those whom he believed to have defrauded the government." President Pierce died at Concord, N. H., Oct. 8, 1869.

Pages 473-474 from volume II of Kansas: a cyclopedia of state history, embracing events, institutions, industries, counties, cities, towns, prominent persons, etc. ... / with a supplementary volume devoted to selected personal history and reminiscence. Standard Pub. Co. Chicago : 1912. 3 v. in 4. : front., ill., ports.; 28 cm. Vols. I-II edited by Frank W. Blackmar. Transcribed July 2002 by Carolyn Ward.

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VOLUME I

TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
INTRODUCTION

A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I

VOLUME II

TITLE PAGE / LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

J | K | L | Mc | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

VOLUME III

BIOGRAPHICAL INDEXES


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