- NAME: Edwin Stanton
- OCCUPATION: Civil Rights Activist, Lawyer, Supreme Court Justice, Government Official
- BIRTH DATE: December 19, 1814
- DEATH DATE: December 14, 1869
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Steubenville, Ohio
- PLACE OF DEATH: Washington, D.C.
- AKA: Edwin McMasters Stanton
- AKA: Edwin M. Stanton
- AKA: Edwin Stanton
Best Known For
Edwin Stanton served as secretary of war under President Abraham Lincoln during the American Civil War. He later served under President Andrew Johnson.
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Johnson later tried again to force Stanton out, temporarily replacing him with General Lorenzo Thomas. Congress again came to Stanton's rescue, however, and actually began the process to impeach Johnson as a result. The Senate ultimately did not get enough votes to remove President Johnson. This face-off between the secretary of war and the president ended with Stanton deciding to relinquish his position on May 26, 1868, and return to practicing law.
In 1869, despite what occurred during President Andrew Johnson's administration, Stanton was once again promoted by a president: President Ulysses S. Grant appointed Stanton to the U.S. Supreme Court. Tragically, the newly appointed Supreme Court justice just four days later, on December 14, 1869, of respiratory failure, at age 55. Stanton was buried in the Oak Hill Cemetery in Washington, D.C. He was survived by his second wife, Ellen Hutchison, and several children.
Stanton has been memorialized in history books for his fervid patriotism and strong actions in times of war. He's also been captured in perpetuity on the silver screen, including in two recent films: The super candid secretary of war is played by actor Bruce McGill in the 2012 film Lincoln, which stars Daniel Day-Lewis as President Lincoln; previously, Stanton was portrayed by Kevin Kline in the 2010 movie The Conspirator, a film about bringing those behind the Lincoln assassination to justice.
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