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William Medill

Gov. William Medill

  • July 13, 1853 - January 14, 1856
  • Democratic
  • February 1, 1802
  • September 2, 1865
  • Delaware
  • University of Delaware
  • Representative


WILLIAM MEDILL, the twenty-second governor of Ohio, was born in New Castle County, Delaware in February 1802. His education was attained at the University of Delaware, where he graduated he graduated in 1825. He went on to study law, and then established his legal career in Lancaster, Ohio. Medill first entered politics as a member and speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, a position he held from 1835 to 1838. He also served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1839 to 1843; was the second assistant postmaster general in 1845; and served as an Indian affairs commissioner from 1845 to 1850. He also presided over the 1850 Ohio state constitutional convention; and served as Ohio’s first lieutenant governor from 1851 to 1853. On July 13, 1853 Governor Reuben Wood resigned from office, and Medill, who was the lieutenant governor at the time, assumed the duties of the governorship. He went on to win election to a gubernatorial term of his own in October 1853. During his tenure, an election riot was dealt with in Cincinnati; and the issue of privatizing canals was promoted. After running unsuccessfully for reelection, Medill later served as first comptroller of the U.S. Treasury, a post he held from 1857 to 1861. Governor William Medill passed away on September 2, 1802, and was buried in the Elmwood Cemetery in Lancaster, Ohio.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

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