Isaac R. Sherwood

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Isaac Ruth Sherwood
Isaac R. Sherwood - Clara Barton Centenary.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Ohio's 6th district
In office
March 4, 1873 – March 3, 1875
Preceded by John Armstrong Smith
Succeeded by Frank H. Hurd
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Ohio's 9th district
In office
March 4, 1907 – March 3, 1921
Preceded by James H. Southard
Succeeded by William W. Chalmers
In office
March 4, 1923 – March 3, 1925
Preceded by William W. Chalmers
Succeeded by William W. Chalmers
18th Ohio Secretary of State
In office
January 11, 1869 – January 13, 1873
Preceded by John Russell
Succeeded by Allen T. Wikoff
Mayor of Toledo
In office
1861–1861
Preceded by Alexander H. Newcomb
Succeeded by John Manor
Personal details
Born (1835-08-13)August 13, 1835
Stanford, New York
Died October 15, 1925(1925-10-15) (aged 90)
Toledo, Ohio
Resting place Woodlawn Cemetery (Toledo, Ohio)
Political party Republican
Democratic
Spouse(s) Kate Brownlee
Children two
Alma mater Antioch College
Military service
Allegiance United States of America
Union
Service/branch Union Army
Rank Brevet Brigadier General
Battles/wars American Civil War

Isaac Ruth Sherwood (August 13, 1835 – October 15, 1925) was an American politician and newspaper editor from Toledo, Ohio, as well as an officer in the Union army during the Civil War. He served nine terms in the United States Congress, and was a noted pacifist during World War I.

Early life and career[edit]

Sherwood was born in Stanford, New York. After attending the local public schools, he attended the Hudson River Institute in Claverack, New York, and Antioch College in Ohio. He then studied law at the Ohio Law College in Poland, Ohio. After finishing school in 1857, Sherwood became the editor of the Williams County Gazette in Bryan, Ohio. Sherwood was married to Kate Brownlee Sherwood and had two children, James and Lenore.[1]

Sherwood first entered politics in October 1860 when he was elected the probate judge of Williams County. Because of the Civil War, Sherwood's term as judge was short.

Soon after President Abraham Lincoln's call for volunteers in April 1861, Sherwood resigned from his judgeship and enlisted as a private in the 14th Ohio Infantry. Sherwood transferred to the 111th Ohio Infantry, initially serving as adjutant, but mustered out with the regiment as lieutenant colonel. Sherwood was ultimately promoted to brevet brigadier general for conspicuous service during the Battle of Franklin. He participated in the Carolinas Campaign, the final major campaign in the Eastern Theater.

Postbellum career[edit]

After being mustered out of the military on June 27, 1865, Sherwood moved to Toledo, Ohio. There he became the editor of the Toledo Daily Commercial. He also began writing political editorials for The Cleveland Leader. Once again, Sherwood became involved in Ohio politics as a member of the Republican Party. In 1868 and again in 1870, he was elected as Secretary of State of Ohio. Sherwood successfully ran for the United States House of Representatives in 1872 and served one term.

Once his term in Congress had ended, Sherwood returned to Cleveland and served as the owner and editor of the Toledo Journal from 1875 to 1884. He also remained active in politics during this era. He was elected probate judge of Lucas County in 1878 and again in 1881. In 1885, Sherwood became the editor of the Canton News-Democrat, a position that he continued to hold for the following decade.

In the 1870s, Sherwood had briefly supported the platform of the National Greenback Party. In 1879, he chose to identify himself with the Democratic Party with which he remained for the rest of his life. He was nominated Representative of Ohio's 18th congressional district in 1896, but lost. As a Democrat, he was elected to the United States House of Representatives in 1906. Sherwood served for seven straight terms in Congress until he failed to win reelection in 1920. When World War I began, he refused to support the United States declaration of war and refused to vote in favor of the draft. He believed that the United States should not get involved in a European war. Sherwood's pacifist views made him very unpopular in his home state, where Ohioans believed that he was being unpatriotic. He was defeated for reelection in 1920.

In 1922, Sherwood was once again elected to the House of Representatives, but he was defeated in his reelection bid in 1924. After completing his term, Sherwood retired from politics and moved back to Toledo. He died there only a few months later and was buried in the city's Woodlawn Cemetery.

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