Benjamin Franklin Tracy - Encyclopedia




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BENJAMIN FRANKLIN TRACY (1830-), American lawyer and soldier, was born in Owego, New York, on the 26th of April 1830. He was educated at the Owego academy, was admitted to the bar in 1851, was district-attorney of Tioga county in 1853-1859, and was a member of the state Assembly in 1862. In 1862 he organized the 109th and the 137th regiments of New York Volunteer Infantry and (Aug. 28) was made colonel of the former. In September 1864 he became colonel of the 127th United States Colored Infantry; in 1864-1865 was in command of the prison camp at Elmira, New York, and in March 1865 was breveted brigadier-general of volunteers. He received a Congressional medal of honour in 1895 for gallantry at the Wilderness in May 1864. He was United States districtattorney for the eastern district of New York in 1866-1873, and an associate judge of the New York court of appeals in 1881-1882. In 1889-1893 he was secretary of the navy in the cabinet of President Benjamin Harrison, and then resumed the practice of law in New York City. He was chairman of the commission which drafted the charter for Greater New York, and in 1897 was defeated as Republican candidate for mayor of the city. In 1899 he was counsel for Venezuela before the Anglo-Venezuelan boundary arbitration commission in Paris.

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