Maine: An Encyclopedia
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Chandler, John

John Chandler, Senate President courtesy Maine State Archives

John Chandler, Maine Senate President, courtesy Maine State Archives

(1762-1841) was born in Epping, New Hampshire, brother of Thomas Chandler and uncle of Zachariah Chandler, both penniless and illiterate.

A U.S. Representative from Massachusetts and a U. S. Senator from Maine, he served in Congress in the following years: 1820-1823; 1823-1825; 1825-1829 as a Democratic-Republican, Crawford Republican, and a Jacksonian, precursors to the Democratic Party.

Born on February 1, 1762, he was self-educated, served in the Revolutionary War, and moved to the Maine District of Massachusetts and settled on a farm near Monmouth around 1780.

John Chandler courtesy Maine State Museum

John Chandler, courtesy Maine State Museum

By this time, however, Chandler, much to his good fortune, had become a protégé of the future Secretary of War, General Henry Dearborn. Borrowing four hundred dollars he bought two hundred acres of land and with the assistance of the Dearborn family managed to proper.

A member of the Massachusetts Senate 1803-1805, Chandler was elected as a Democratic-Republican to the Ninth and Tenth Congresses (March 4, 1805-March 3, 1809), but was not a candidate for renomination in 1808, though he was appointed sheriff of Kennebec County in that same year.

During the War of 1812 he served in the Maine Militia from 1812 to 1815, attaining the rank of brigadier general. He was a member of the Massachusetts General Court in 1819. Chandler served as a member of the Maine constitutional convention of 1819-1820.

Upon the admission of Maine as a State into the Union, he was elected to the State Senate where he became its first President. After only a few months in office, he resigned to move to the United States Senate in 1820 and was reelected in 1823. He served from June 14, 1820, to March 3, 1829 but was not a candidate for renomination. In the Senate he chaired the Committee on Militia (Eighteenth through Twentieth Congresses).

After his senatorial career, he was appointed collector of customs at Portland 1829-1837. Chandler died in Augusta on September 25, 1841 and is buried in Mount Pleasant Cemetery.

Additional resources

Chandler, John. A Short Biographical Sketch of General John Chandler. 1841? (Cataloger Note: “Extracts printed with many corrections in punctuation and capitalization, and some changes and insertions by Geo. Foster Talbot in Me. Hist. Soc. Coll. vol. IX p. 167-206. It is there called his autobiography. Internal evidence also indicates this.”–Prelim. leaf. Photocopy of handwritten manuscript in the possession of the Maine Historical Society.) [University of Maine, Raymond H. Fogler Library, Special Collections]




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This entry was last modified: November 10, 2017 04:25 PM

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