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William Eustis

Gov. William Eustis

  • May 31, 1823 - February 6, 1825
  • Republican
  • June 10, 1753
  • February 6, 1825
  • Massachusetts
  • Harvard University
  • Married Caroline Langdon
  • Died in office
  • Representative, Cabinet secretary, Ambassador
  • Army
  • Physician/Dentist


William Eustis, the eleventh governor of Massachusetts, was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts on June 10, 1753. His education was attained at the Boston Latin School, and at Harvard University, where he graduated in 1772. He studied medicine, and then established a successful practice in Boston. Eustis served as a hospital surgeon during the Revolutionary War, as well as serving in the Shay Rebellion as a medic in 1786 and 1787. He first entered politics in 1788, serving as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, a position he held six years. He also served as a member of the U.S. House of Representative from 1801 to 1805 and 1820 to 1823, was the secretary of war in President Madison’s administration from 1809 to 1813, and served in the Netherlands as envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary from 1814 to 1818. Eustis made three unsuccessful gubernatorial bids before finally winning election on April 7, 1823. He was reelected to a second term in 1824. During his tenure, he publicly criticized the Federalists who had supported the 1815 Hartford Convention. While still in office, Governor William Eustis passed away on February 6, 1825. He was buried in the Old Burying Ground in Lexington, Massachusetts.


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.

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