Lewis W. Ross
Born near Seneca Falls, New York, Ross moved to Illinois with his family in 1820, and settled in an area that later became Lewistown, Illinois, named for Lewis Ross by his father, Ossian M. Ross. Lewis Ross completed preparatory studies and attended Illinois College at Jacksonville in 1837. He studied law. He was admitted to the bar in 1839 and commenced practice in Lewistown. He served as a member of the State house of representatives in 1840, 1841, 1844, and 1845. He served as Captain in Company K, 4th Illinois Infantry, in the Mexican-American War, enrolling July 4, 1846. He served as member of the State constitutional conventions in 1861 and 1870.
Ross was elected as a Democrat to the Thirty-eighth, Thirty-ninth, and Fortieth Congresses (March 4, 1863-March 3, 1869). He was not a candidate for renomination in 1868. He resumed the practice of law. He died in Lewistown, Illinois, October 20, 1895. He was interred in Oak Hill Cemetery.
Lewis W. Ross was the basis for the character of Washington McNeely in Edgar Lee Masters' Spoon River Anthology, and the McNeely Mansion mentioned in the verse refers to the Ross Mansion, which was later demolished, with the land designated by Lewistown as Ross Mansion Park.
- Bateson, Newton, Paul Selby, and Jesse Heylin. 1908. Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois and History of Fulton County. Chicago: Munsell Pub. Co.
- Illinois, and Isaac H. Elliott. 1882. Record of the services of Illinois soldiers in the Black Hawk war, 1831-32, and in the Mexican war, 1846-8: containing a complete roster of commissioned officers and enlisted men of both wars, taken from the official rolls on file in the War department, Washington, D.C. With an appendix, giving a record of the services of the Illinois militia, rangers and riflemen, in protecting the frontier from the ravages of the Indians from 1810 to 1813. Springfield, Ill: H.W. Rokker, State printer.
- Lewis W. Ross at Findagrave.com
- Masters, Edgar Lee, and John E. Hallwas. 1992. Spoon River Anthology: an annotated edition. Urbana: Univ. of Illinois Press, pp. 392-393.
This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.