Rutherford B.

Hayes

Rutherford Birchard Hayes (October 4, 1822 – January 17, 1893) was an American politician, lawyer, military leader and the 19th President of the United States (1877–1881). Hayes was elected President by one electoral vote after the highly disputed election of 1876. Losing the popular vote to his opponent, Samuel Tilden, Hayes was the only president whose election was decided by a congressional commission. During his otherwise uneventful presidency, he ordered federal troops to suppress The Great Railroad Strike of 1877 and he ended Reconstruction. Hayes was born in Delaware, Ohio[1], on October 4, 1822. His parents were Rutherford Hayes (January 4, 1787 Brattleboro, Vermont – July 20, 1822 Delaware, Ohio) and Sophia Birchard (April 15, 1792 Wilmington, Vermont – October 30, 1866 Columbus, Ohio). His father, a storekeeper, died ten weeks before his birth, thus making Hayes the second U.S. president born after the death of his father, Andrew Jacksonbeing the first. An uncle, Sardis Birchard, lived with the family and served as Hayes's guardian. Close to Hayes throughout his life, Birchard became a father figure to him, schooling a young Hayes in Latin and Ancient Greek, and contributing much to his early education. Hayes attended the common schools and the Methodist Academy in Norwalk. He graduated from Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio in August 1842 at the top of his class He was an honorary member of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity (Delta Chi chapter at Cornell), though he had already graduated after the Fraternity Chapter was Chartered. After briefly reading the law in Columbus, he graduated in 2 years from Harvard Law School in January 1845. He was admitted to the bar on May 10, 1845, and commenced practice in Lower Sandusky (now Fremont). After dissolving the partnership in Fremont in 1849, he moved to Cincinnati and resumed the practice of law. Rutherford and Lucy Hayes on their wedding day, December 30, 1852. On December 30, 1852, Hayes married Lucy Ware Webb.

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They had eight children, seven sons and a daughter. (Sardis, James, Rutherford, Frances, Scott, and three sons who died young). In 1856, Hayes was nominated for but declined a municipal judgeship; however, in 1858 he accepted an appointment as Cincinnati city solicitor by the city council and won election outright to that position in 1859, losing a reelection bid in 1860. While commanding the 23rd Regiment of the Ohio Volunteer Infantry, Hayes met William McKinley Jr., who would later become the 25th President of the United States. The two become fraternal brothers of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows (I.O.O.F.). Hayes promoted McKinley twice under his military command, including once for an act of bravery at Antietam. During Hayes' first Ohio gubernatorial race, McKinley engaged in political campaigning and rallying for Hayes' election by "making speeches in the Canton area". Later, as Governor of Ohio, Hayes provided political support for his fellow Republican and Ohioan during McKinley's bid for congressional election.

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