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Thomas L. Kane correspondence with national and local political leaders, 1845-1877

 Sub-Series — Box: 63
Identifier: Vault MSS 792 Series 4 Sub-Series 5

Scope and Contents

Contains letters between Kane and political figures at the national, state, and territorial levels regarding issues and appointments. Materials date between 1845 and 1877.


  • 1845-1877


Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Kane family papers must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Coordinating Committee.

Biographical / Historical

Benjamin Harris Brewster (1816-1888) was an American politician and attorney. He served as the U.S. Attorney General from 1881 to 1885.

Benjamin Harris Brewster was born October 13, 1816 in Salem, New Jersey to Francis Enoch Brewster and Maria Hampton. He attended Princeton in 1834, and, after graduating, studied law in the office of Eli Kirk Price, a prominent Philadelphia lawyer. He was accepted into the bar and began practicing law in 1838. Brewster married Elizabeth von Myerbach de Reinfeldts in 1857. Elizabeth died in 1868, and Brewster remarried Mary Walker on July 12, 1870. Together they had one child, a son. Brewster was appointed Attorney General of Pennsylvania in 1867 by Governor John W. Geary. In 1881, Brewster was appointed U.S. Attorney General, a capacity he served in until 1885. He died April 4, 1888 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Biographical / Historical

Salmon P. Chase (1808-1873) was an American politician, abolitionist, educator, and lawyer.

Salmon Portland Chase was born January 13, 1808 in Cornish, New Hampshire to Ithamar Chase and Janet Ralston. He was elected US Senator in 1849. In 1855, Chase became the first Republican Ohio governor. He ran for president a few years later, but lost to Abraham Lincoln. As Secretary of the Treasury, Chase implemented the National Banking Act. In 1864, he became chief justice of the Supreme Court. Chase died in New York City, New York on May 7, 1873. Chase National Bank was named after him years later, in recognition of his financial accomplishments.

Biographical / Historical

Simon Cameron (1799-1889) was an American politician who served as the United States Secretary of War for Abraham Lincoln at the start of the American Civil War.

Simon Cameron was born March 8, 1799 in Maytown, Pennsylvania to Charles Cameron and Martha Pfoutz. He married Margaret Brua on October 17, 1822. He worked as the state printer of Pennsylvania from 1825 until 1827. He founded the Bank of Middletown in 1832. In 1838, he was appointed as commissioner to settle claims of the Winnebago Indians. He was elected to the United States Senate on March 13, 1845 and served until 1849. He was re-elected again in 1857, and served in that capacity until his resignation in 1861, when he began serving as the United States Secretary of War under President Abraham Lincoln. He served as US Secretary of War until 1862. He was the U.S. Minister to Russia in 1862. Cameron served in the U.S. Senate again in 1867, and was re-elected in 1873. Cameron retired to his farm at Donegal Springs Cameron Estate near Maytown, Pennsylvania where he died on June 26, 1889.

Biographical / Historical

Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885) was the 18th President of the United States of America, and an Army general.

Hiram Ulysses Grant was born April 27, 1822 in Point Pleasant, Ohio to Jesse Root Grant and Hannah Simpson Grant. He attended the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. Upon his arrival, he was registered as Ulysses S. Grant, the "S" standing for his mother's maiden name, Simpson. Grant continued to go by that name, though he said the "S" did not stand for anything. Grant graduated from West Point in the summer of 1843. He fought in the Mexican War as a calvaryman. On August 22, 1848, after a four-year engagement, Grant married Julia Boggs Dent in St. Louis, Missouri. Together they had 4 children: Frederick Dent Grant, Ulysses S. "Buck" Grant, Jr., Ellen Wrenshall "Nellie" Grant, and Jesse Root Grant. Grant was promoted to captain in the summer of 1853, but on July 31, 1854, he resigned from the army with little notice. At the outbreak of the Civil War, he was working in his father's leather store in Galena, Illinois. He was appointed by the Governor to lead a volunteer regiment. By 1861, Grant had risen to the rank of brigadier general of the volunteers. In March 1864, after leading his volunteers to a number of key Union victories, President Abraham Lincoln appointed Grant General-in-Chief. The war ended on April 9, 1865 with General Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox Court House. Grant was the 18th President of the United States of America, and served two terms as president, from March 4, 1869 to March 4, 1877. After his presidency, Grant became a partner in a financial firm that went bankrupt in 1884. At about that same time, Grant learned that he had cancer of the throat. In order to pay off debts and provied for his family, Grant began writing his recollections. The cancer quickly spread throughout his body. His memoirs, which he finished writing on July 19, 1885, eventually earned $450,000. He died just four days later, on July 23, 1885 in Wilton, New York.

Biographical / Historical

Thomas L. Kane (1822-1883) was a lawyer, abolitionist, Civil War soldier, frontiersman, and Mormon advocate.

Thomas Leiper Kane was born January 27, 1822 in Philadelphia to Judge John Kintzing Kane and Jane Duval Leiper. He attained the bar in 1846, after studying law with his father. He served as clerk in his father's court until 1850, at which point he resigned due to a moral conflict with the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. He went on to become an active member of the Underground Railroad. Kane became interested in the Mormon migration to the West, and was crucial in securing government aid for the movement. His friendship with Brigham Young is credited with the non-violent resolution of the Utah War. At the advent of the Civil War Kane organized a volunteer Union Army regiment known as the "Bucktails" and served as lieutenant-colonel of that outfit. He later was brevetted the rank of major-general for his service at Gettysburg. After his military service he retired to found the town of Kane, Pennsylvania. In 1853 Kane married Elizabeth Dennistoun Wood, and together they had four children: Harriet Amelia Kane (1854-1896); Elisha Kent Kane (1856-1935); Evan O'Neill Kane (1861-1932); and Thomas Leiper Kane, Jr. (1863-1929). Kane died of pneumonia in Philadelphia on December 26, 1883.


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