Thomas Irwin


Thomas Irwin

Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA
Death 14 May 1870 (aged 85)
Philadelphia, Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania, USA
Burial Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, USA
Memorial ID 12760576 View Source
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US Congressman, Judge. He was born to Matthew Irwin and Esther Mifflin Irwin in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He was educated in local common schools and at Franklin College (later Franklin & Marshall College) in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. He sometime later married Elizabeth "Eliza" Walker but the date is unknown. The couple had no children. Following his education, he became the editor of the Philadelphia Repository Newspaper beginning in 1804, and four years later he was reading law. He was then admitted to the bar and entered private practice after settling in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, in 1808. He continued with his practice of law when he relocated and became an Indian agent in Natchitoches, Louisiana, from 1808 to 1810. He returned to Uniontown, Pennsylvania shortly thereafter and continued his practice of law from 1811 to 1812. He then served as Deputy Attorney General for Fayette County, Pennsylvania, from 1812 to 1819, and as a Member of the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from Fayette County Pennsylvania, from 1824 to 1828. He then decided to run for a seat in the United States Congress and was elected. A Member of the Jacksonian-Democratic Party, he then served Pennsylvania's 14th District (Twenty-First Congress) in the United States House of Representatives from 1829 to 1831. He was not a Candidate for renomination in 1830. After his term in the United States Congress expired on March 3, 1831, he was succeeded in office by United States Representative Andrew Stewart. He then received a recess appointment from then-President Andrew Jackson on April 14, 1831, to a seat as a Judge on the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania which had been vacated by United States Representative And Judge William Wilkins that same day. He was again nominated to that same position by then-President Andrew Jackson on December 7, 1831, and he accepted. He was confirmed for that post by the United States Senate on March 21, 1832, receiving his commission that same day. He served as the Judge of the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania from April 14, 1831, to January 4, 1859, when his service was terminated due to his resignation. On January 13, 1859, the United States House of Representatives authorized the United States House Committee on the Judiciary to investigate charges against Irwin. On January 28, 1859, the House discontinued proceedings on the report that Irwin had resigned. At least 3 different attempts were made by the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Bar to secure Irwin's impeachment. Irwin had been charged with partiality toward certain lawyers, withholding needless terms of court and with demanding that the United States Marshal for the Western District of Pennsylvania kick-back a portion of his salary and fees to the Judge. Irwin was also detested by the anti-slavery bar of Western Pennsylvania for the maintenance of the constitutionality of the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. In the face of almost certain impeachment, Irwin resigned. Following his resignation on January 4, 1859, he was replaced by Judge Wilson McCandless. He then resumed his practice of law from 1859 until his death. He passed away on May 14, 1870, at the age of 85, and was buried in the famous Allegheny Cemetery in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His wife Elizabeth "Eliza" passed away on December 31, 1878, at the age of about 85, and she was buried with her husband.

Bio by: Peterborough K

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BORN FEB. 22, 1785
DIED MAY 14, 1870


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  • Maintained by: Find a Grave
  • Originally Created by: Peterborough K
  • Added: 21 Dec 2005
  • Find a Grave Memorial 12760576
  • Find a Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Thomas Irwin (22 Feb 1785–14 May 1870), Find a Grave Memorial ID 12760576, citing Allegheny Cemetery, Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .