Stewart, William M.

49er, one of Nevada’s 1st US Senators, an author of the 15th Amendment, a founder of Chevy Chase, Maryland

Price: $20.00

Description:
(1827-1909) Nevada lawyer and politician. New York-born, moved with his parents to Ohio. In 1849 he began attending Yale University but left in 1850 to move to California because of the Gold Rush. He arrived in San Francisco, California and soon began mining near Nevada City, California. In 1852 he decided to become a lawyer in Nevada City. He almost immediately became a district attorney, and served as Attorney General of California briefly during 1854, at the age of 27. In 1860 he moved to Virginia City, Nevada where he participated in mining litigation and helped develop the Comstock Lode. As Nevada was becoming a state in 1864, he helped the state develop its constitution. He was the territory’s leading lawyer in mining litigation, but barely escaped disbarment. In 1864, Stewart was elected to the US Senate as a Republican, serving to 1875 when he retired and practiced law again in Nevada and California. He was elected to the Senate again in 1887, and reelected in 1893 and 1899. During the 1890s he left the Republican Party to join the Silver Republicans, a faction which supported the Free Silver movement. During his time in the Senate, Stewart drafted or co-authored several mining acts and laws urging land reclamation by irrigation. Stewart is given credit for authoring in 1868, the Fifteenth Amendment to the Constitution protecting voting rights regardless of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. During his time as Senator, he received 50,000 acres of land for his service on the Committee on Pacific Railroads. In 1871, President Grant offered him a seat on the Supreme Court, which he declined. Stewart was also involved in an international scandal where he promoted the sale of a worthless worked out Emma Silver Mine at Alta, Utah for millions of pounds to unsuspecting English citizens. Stewart retired from the Senate in 1905. He was a co-founder of the city of Chevy Chase, Maryland, along with Francis G. Newlands, a fellow Senator from Nevada. 2 ¼ x 6 signature cut from an autograph album page, adds “Nevada” under signature, likely while Senator.

Condition: Very good
Type:Signature






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