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John James Ingalls

John James Ingalls
United States Senator
from Kansas
In office
March 4, 1873 – March 4, 1891
Preceded by Samuel C. Pomeroy
Succeeded by William A. Peffer
Personal details
Born (1833-12-29)December 29, 1833
Middleton, Massachusetts
Died August 16, 1900(1900-08-16) (aged 66)
Las Vegas, New Mexico
Political party Republican

John James Ingalls (December 29, 1833 – August 16, 1900) was an American politician.

Life and career

John James Ingalls was born in Middleton, Massachusetts, on December 29, 1833. He graduated from Williams College in 1855. Foreshadowing his later reputation as a wit, his graduation thesis, entitled Mummy Life, was a satire of college life. He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1857. Moving to Kansas Territory, Ingalls settled in Atchison in 1860. He joined the anti-slavery forces and worked to make Kansas a free state. He was a member of the Wyandotte constitutional convention in 1859 and is reputed to have coined the state motto, Ad Astra per Aspera.

When Kansas was admitted to the Union in 1861, he became secretary of the first state Senate and state senator in 1862. During the Civil War he served as judge advocate in the Kansas militia. As an editor of the Atchison newspaper, Freedom's Champion, for three years, he won a national reputation for a series of magazine articles. Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1873, succeeding Samuel C. Pomeroy, Ingalls served for 18 years. He supported labor and agriculture against monopolies. He also favored the Interstate Commerce Act and the Pendleton Civil Service Act.

In 1887 Ingalls was elected President pro tempore of the Senate. Praised throughout his life for his keen sarcasm and quick wit, John James Ingalls died in Las Vegas, New Mexico on August 16, 1900. He was buried at Mount Vernon Cemetery in Atchison.

In 1905, the state of Kansas donated a marble statue of Ingalls to the U.S. Capitol's National Statuary Hall Collection.[1] In 2011, Kansas had plans to replace Ingalls with Amelia Earhart.[2]


  1. ^ "John James Ingalls". Architect of the Capitol. Retrieved 27 March 2014. 
  2. ^ Biles, Jan. "Amelia's monument about to take flight". Retrieved 2014-08-21. 

External links

United States Senate
Preceded by
Samuel C. Pomeroy
U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Kansas
Served alongside: Alexander Caldwell, Robert Crozier, James M. Harvey, Preston B. Plumb
Succeeded by
William A. Peffer
Political offices
Preceded by
John Sherman
President pro tempore of the United States Senate
February 26, 1887 – March 2, 1891
Succeeded by
Charles F. Manderson
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