John P. Altgeld


Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois
pub. in 1920

John P. Altgeld, twentieth Governor elected, Democrat, of Cook, Jan. 10, 1893, to Jan. 11, 1897, was born in Prussia in 1848 and came to this country when a boy, his father settling on a farm near Mansfield, Ohio. He attended the district school when farm work was not pressing, and at the age of 16 enlisted in the 163d Ohio Infantry and participated in the closing campaign of the great Civil war. After the war he taught school, worked as a farm hand, and studied when opportunity offered. At Savannah, Mo., he entered a law office and continued his studies. In 1874 he was elected prosecuting attorney of Andrew several years, but in 1884 accepted the Democratic nomination to Congress and largely reduced the overwhelming Republican majority . In 1886 he was elected Superior Court judge of Cook county; he resigned in August, 1891. In 1892 he was elected Governor, receiving 425,558 votes to 402,676 for Joseph W. Fifer., Republican. He was renominated for Governor by acclamation by
the Democratic and Populist State conventions in 1896, and received
474,256 votes to 587,637 for John R. tanner Republican. In 1878 he
married Miss Emma Ford of Chicago, and died March 12, 1902.

/Source: Illinois Blue Book 1903-04/


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