EPAPHRODITUS RANSOM, the seventh governor of Michigan, was born in Shelburne Falls, Massachusetts in 1798. His education was attained at the Chester Academy in Vermont, and later at a law school in Northampton, Massachusetts, where he graduated in 1823. Ransom first entered politics as a member of the Vermont House of Representatives, a position he held several terms. In 1834, he moved to Michigan and secured an appointment to the bench of the Second Judicial Court. He also was appointed an associate justice of the Michigan Supreme Court in 1836, serving as chief justice from 1843 to 1847. Ransom was elected governor of Michigan on November 2, 1847, and was sworn into office on January 3, 1848. During his tenure, the Michigan Agricultural Society was authorized; the first telegraph line was finalized from New York to Detroit; an asylum for the deaf, dumb and blind was established, as well as an asylum for the insane. Also, state roads were advanced; and several plank road companies were incorporated. After completing his term, Ransom left office on January 7, 1850. He continued to stay politically active, serving as a member of the Michigan House of Representatives from 1853 to 1854. He also served on the Board of Regents of the University of Michigan from 1850 to 1852, and served as the receiver of the Kansas Osage Land Office in 1857. Governor Epaphroditus Ransom passed away on November 11, 1859, and was buried in the Mountain Home Cemetery in Kalamazoo, Michigan.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 2, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.