GIDDINGS, Joshua Reed, a Representative from Ohio; born in Tioga Point (later Athens),
Bradford County, Pa., October 6, 1795; moved with his parents to Canandaigua,
N.Y., in 1795; received a common-school education; again moved with his parents
to Ashtabula County, Ohio, in 1806; completed preparatory studies; served in
the War of 1812; taught school; studied law; was admitted to the bar in
February 1821 and commenced practice in Jefferson, Ohio; member of the State
house of representatives in 1826; elected as a Whig to the Twenty-fifth
Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Elisha Whittlesey;
reelected to the Twenty-sixth and Twenty-seventh Congresses and served from
December 3, 1838, until March 22, 1842, when he resigned, after a vote of
censure had been passed upon him by the House in response to his motion in
defense of the slave mutineers in the
Creole case; subsequently elected to the Twenty-seventh
Congress to fill the vacancy caused by his own resignation; reelected as a Whig
to the Twenty-eighth through Thirtieth Congresses, as a Free-Soil candidate to
the Thirty-first through Thirty-third Congresses, elected as an Opposition
Party candidate to the Thirty-fourth Congress, and reelected as a Republican to
the Thirty-fifth Congress; and served from December 5, 1842, until March 3,
1859; chairman, Committee on Claims (Twenty-seventh and Thirty-fourth
Congresses); declined to be a candidate for reelection; appointed consul
general to the British North American Provinces by President Lincoln on March
25, 1861, and served until his death; died in Montreal, Canada, May 27, 1864;
interment in Oakdale Cemetery, Jefferson, Ohio.
BibliographyStewart, James Brewer.
Joshua R. Giddings and the Tactics of Radical Politics.
Cleveland: Press of Case Western Reserve University, 1970.