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 Leonard James Farwell

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Leonard James Farwell

  • Birth 5 Jan 1819 Waterloo, Seneca County, New York, USA
  • Death 11 Apr 1889 Grant City, Worth County, Missouri, USA
  • Burial Grant City, Worth County, Missouri, USA
  • Memorial ID 11339602

Wisconsin Governor. In 1840, he opened a wholesale hardware firm in Milwaukee, Wisconsin which eventually became one of the largest in the midwest. He purchased a hugh tract of land in Madison, Wisconsin in 1847 and was instrumental in laying out streets and erecting public buildings in that city. He took an active role in organizing the State Historical Society, the State Agricultural Society, the public school system, and the state university. In 1851, he was elected the second governor of the state of Wisconsin as the candidate of the Whig party with Free Soiler support. He served as governor from 1852 until 1854. After leaving office, he returned to his business interests in Madison, but was financially ruined by the Panic of 1857. During the Civil War, he was vice president of a relief association for Wisconsin soldiers. In 1863, President Lincoln appointed him to be Assistant Examiner in the Patent Office. In three months, he was promoted to Principal Examiner of Inventions; a position which he held until 1870. He was in the audience at Ford's Theater in Washington on April 14, 1865 and witnessed the assassination of President Lincoln. Sensing a possible conspiracy, he rushed to the Kirkwood House to warn Vice President Andrew Johnson. Some of his contemporaries credited him with saving the Vice President. In 1870, he opened an agency in Chicago to solicit patents, but was ruined by the Chicago fire of October 9, 1871. He moved to Grant City in northwestern Missouri, where he formed a banking and real estate partnership. He died in Grant City in 1889 and was buried in the City Cemetery there.

Bio by: Thomas Fisher


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Thomas Fisher
  • Added: 11 Jul 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11339602
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Leonard James Farwell (5 Jan 1819–11 Apr 1889), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11339602, citing Grant City Cemetery, Grant City, Worth County, Missouri, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .