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Swift, Henry Adoniram "H.A."

Senate 1862-65 (District 19)

Party when first elected:  Republican

Counties Served:  Brown, Davis (defunct), Nicollet, Pierce (defunct), Renville, Sibley, Watonwan

BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION

Date of Birth: 3/23/1823
Birth Place: Ravenna, Ohio
Birth County:
Birth Country: United States
Date of Death: 2/25/1869
Gender: Male
Religion:
Other Names: H.A.
City of Residence (when first elected): Saint Peter
Occupation (when first elected): Lawyer/Partner, St. Peter Land Company

EDUCATION

Western Reserve College, Ohio; College Graduate; With Honors, 1842
Law Degree; Ohio; Admitted to Practice, 1845

OTHER GOVERNMENT SERVICE

State Legislative Staff: Ohio House of Representatives (Chief Clerk); 1847 to 1849
U.S. Executive Branch: United States Land Office, St. Peter, Minnesota (Register); 1856 to 02/25/1869
Military: Minnesota (Sioux Uprising; Defense of New Ulm, Minnesota); 1862 to 1862
State Lieutenant Governor: Minnesota; 03/04/1863 to 07/10/1863
Board of Regents: University of Minnesota (Ex Officio as Lieutenant Governor and Governor); 03/04/1863 to 01/11/1864
State Governor: Minnesota; 07/10/1863 to 01/11/1864 [Appointed]

FAMILY RELATIONSHIPS

Spouse: Ruth Livingston (married on September 11,1851; she died in 1881)
Children: At least Two children: Mrs. W.M. Spackman and Mrs. G.S. Ives (daughters)
Family Members Who Have Served in the Minnesota Legislature:

GENERAL NOTES

Lt. Governor Ignatius Donnelly resigned on March 3, 1863 to take a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Senator Henry A. Swift subsequently served briefly as lieutenant governor until July 10, 1863, and then became governor when Governor Ramsey resigned to take a seat in the U.S. Senate. Though the Journal of the Senate notes Sen. Swift occasionally convening the senate in his capacity as president pro tem during the early parts of the 1863 session, the Journal states he was "duly elected" president pro tem on March 5, 1863. The Minnesota Historical Society lists his term as lieutenant governor beginning March 4, 1863. During the last few days of the legislative session (it ended on March 6, 1863) the Journal of the Senate records Sen. Swift voting on bills.

He was of English ancestry.

He came to St. Paul, Minnesota in 1853. He moved to St. Peter, Minnesota in 1856.

"Republican party leaders nominated Swift for Sibley County's state Senate seat, after another candidate refused the offer." (Session Weekly, St. Paul: Minnesota House of Representatives Information Office, April 2, 1993, p. 16)

He ran unsuccessfully on the Republican ticket for the United States Congress in 1857.

The St. Paul newspaper traditionally listed members who won the election with party affiliation (Democrat or Republican). In 1862 they only identified the Democrats, the assumption is that the rest were Republicans. Since he wasn't identified as a Democrat, the assumption is that he was a Republican. (St. Paul Pioneer and Democrat, January 7, 1862)

His grandfather, Dr. Isaac Swift, was a member of the Connecticut Legislature in 1772 and 1799.

Swift County, Minnesota was named after him.

He died from typhoid fever in St. Peter, Minnesota. He was buried in Ravenna, Ohio.

Total Days Served: 1456

SESSIONS SERVED

7th Legislative Session (1865)

  Session Details
Body: Senate
District: 19
Elected: 11/3/1863
Residence: Saint Peter
Term of Office: 1/5/1864 to 1/1/1866
Counties Represented: Brown, Davis (defunct), Nicollet, Pierce (defunct), Renville, Sibley, Watonwan
Occupation: Lawyer
Party: Not Available
Committees:
  • Federal Relations (Chair)
  • Indian Affairs (Chair)
  • Joint Agricultural Colleges and College Lands
  • Judiciary
  • Railroads

6th Legislative Session (1864)

  Session Details
Body: Senate
District: 19
Elected: 11/3/1863
Residence: Saint Peter
Term of Office: 1/5/1864 to 1/1/1866
Counties Represented: Brown, Davis (defunct), Nicollet, Pierce (defunct), Renville, Sibley, Watonwan
Occupation: Lawyer
Party: Not Available
Committees:
  • Federal Relations (Chair)
  • Indian Affairs (Chair)
  • Joint University
  • Public Lands
  • Railroads

5th Legislative Session (1863)

  Session Details
Body: Senate
District: 19
Elected: 10/8/1861
Residence: Saint Peter
Term of Office: 1/7/1862 to 1/4/1864
Counties Represented: Brown, Davis (defunct), Nicollet, Pierce (defunct), Renville, Sibley, Watonwan
Occupation: Lawyer
Party: Republican Party Notes: The St. Paul newspaper traditionally listed members who won the election with party affiliation (Democrat or Republican). In 1862 they only identified the Democrats, the assumption is that the rest were Republicans. Since he wasn't identified as a Democrat, the assumption is that he was a Republican. (St. Paul Pioneer and Democrat, January 7, 1862)
Committees:
  • Banks
  • Judiciary (Chair)
Session Notes: Lt. Governor Ignatius Donnelly resigned on March 3, 1863 to take a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. Senator Henry A. Swift subsequently served briefly as lieutenant governor until July 10, 1863, and then became governor when Governor Ramsey resigned to take a seat in the U.S. Senate. Though the Journal of the Senate notes Sen. Swift occasionally convening the senate in his capacity as president pro tem during the early parts of the 1863 session, the Journal states he was "duly elected" president pro tem on March 5, 1863. The Minnesota Historical Society lists his term as lieutenant governor beginning March 4, 1863. During the last few days of the legislative session, the Journal of the Senate records Sen. Swift voting on bills.

4th Legislative Session (1862)

  Session Details
Body: Senate
District: 19
Elected: 10/8/1861
Residence: Saint Peter
Term of Office: 1/7/1862 to 1/4/1864
Counties Represented: Brown, Davis (defunct), Nicollet, Pierce (defunct), Renville, Sibley, Watonwan
Occupation: Lawyer/Partner, St. Peter Land Company
Party: Republican Party Notes: "Republican party leaders nominated Swift for Sibley County's state Senate seat, after another candidate refused the offer." (Session Weekly, St. Paul: Minnesota House of Representatives Information Office, April 2, 1993, p. 16); The St. Paul newspaper traditionally listed members who won the election with party affiliation (Democrat or Republican). In 1862 they only identified the Democrats, the assumption is that the rest were Republicans. Since he wasn't identified as a Democrat, the assumption is that he was a Republican. (St. Paul Pioneer and Democrat, January 7, 1862)
Committees:
  • Banks
  • Judiciary (Chair)
  • Railroads and Railroad Grants