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 John Reynolds

John Reynolds

Birth
Death 8 May 1865 (aged 77)
Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
Burial Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA
Memorial ID 6624007 · View Source
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Illinois Governor, US Congressman. He was born in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, the son of Irish immigrants. When he was around six months old, his parents moved with him to Tennessee, near the present city of Knoxville. In 1800, he and his family moved to Kaskaskia, Illinois, and then relocated up the Mississippi River near the present city of Edwardsville, Illinois in 1807. In 1808, he attended college near Knoxville, Tennessee, for two years, taking courses in classical studies, but returned to his home due to health issues. In 1812 he was admitted to the bar at Kaskaskia and learned the French language. He served as a scout against the western Native Americans during the war of 1812. In 1814, he opened a law office in the old French village of Cahokia, Illinois, which was the county seat of Saint Clair County at that time. He was elected as an associate judge of the Illinois Supreme Court in the fall of 1818 by the Illinois General Assembly and was an unsuccessful candidate for the US Senate in that same year. In 1826, he was elected to the Illinois House of Representatives as a Jacksonian Democrat and served until 1830, when he was elected as the 4th Illinois Governor. During the Black Hawk War of 1832, he called up the militia and was the field commander, often appearing in person in battle. He was given the rank of Major General by President Andrew Jackson as well as the authority to make treaties with the Native Americans. On November 17, 1834, he resigned as governor, having been elected to the US House of Representatives for the 23rd Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Charles Slade. He was reelected for the 24th Congress, serving from December 1, 1834 to March 3, 1837, failed to be reelected for the 25th Congress, but was subsequently elected for the 26th and 27th Congresses, serving from March 4, 1839 to March 3, 1843. In 1837, he, along with other investors, constructed the first railroad in the Mississippi Valley that led from his coal mine to the bank of the Mississippi River opposite Saint Louis, Missouri, a distance of six miles. The railroad was operated by horse-power because the group lacked funding to purchase a locomotive. In 1846, he was elected again to the Illinois House of Representatives from Saint Clair County. He was elected to the Illinois House of Representatives again in 1852 and served as Speaker of the House. In 1860, he attended the Democratic National Convention in Charleston, South Carolina, as an anti-Douglas Delegate, supporting John C. Breckinridge in the 1860 US Presidential election. After the Presidential election he retired to Belleville, Illinois and died there on May 8, 1865.

Bio by: William Bjornstad


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Scott Maxwell
  • Added: 20 Jul 2002
  • Find A Grave Memorial 6624007
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John Reynolds (26 Feb 1788–8 May 1865), Find A Grave Memorial no. 6624007, citing Walnut Hill Cemetery, Belleville, St. Clair County, Illinois, USA ; Maintained by Find A Grave .