Edward Dickinson

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This article is about the Massachusetts representative. For the Ohio representative, see Edward F. Dickinson.
Edward Dickinson

Edward Dickinson (January 1, 1803 – June 16, 1874) was an American politician from Massachusetts. He is also known as the father of the poet Emily Dickinson; their family home in Amherst, the Dickinson Homestead, is now a museum dedicated to her.

Biography[edit]

Signature of Edward Dickinson in a book given to his daughter Emily, 1859

Dickinson was born in Amherst, Massachusetts, where he attended public schools and the Amherst Academy. He graduated from Yale College in 1823 and studied at Northampton Law School in Northampton, Massachusetts. He was admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Amherst in 1826. On May 6, 1828 he married Emily Norcross Dickinson (1804–1882); they had three children, William Austin, Emily Elizabeth, and Lavinia Norcross.

Dickinson served as treasurer of Amherst College from 1835 until 1873. He was then elected a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives 1838–1839, served in the Massachusetts Senate in 1842–1843, and was a member of the Governor's Council 1846–1847. He then was elected as a Whig to the United States Congress 1853-1855, declined to be a candidate for the Republican nomination of Lieutenant Governor in 1861, and was again elected a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1873. Dickinson died in Boston on June 16, 1874 and is buried in Amherst's West Cemetery.

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United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Zeno Scudder
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 10th congressional district

March 4, 1853 – March 3, 1855
Succeeded by
Calvin C. Chaffee