Norman Jay Coleman
|Norman J. Colman|
|1st United States Secretary of Agriculture|
February 15, 1889 – March 6, 1889
|Succeeded by||Jeremiah M. Rusk|
|Born||Norman Jay Colman
May 16, 1827
Richfield Springs, New York, U.S.
|Died||November 3, 1911
St. Louis, Missouri, U.S.
|Resting place||Bellefontaine Cemetery, St. Louis, Missouri|
|Spouse(s)||Clara Porter Colman
Catherine Wright Colman
|Alma mater||University of Louisville|
Colman was born in Richfield Springs, New York, to son of Nancy (Sprague) and Hamilton Colman. He later moved to Kentucky to become an educator. He received a law degree from the University of Louisville Law School in 1849. Colman then moved to Missouri, ostensibly to farm. He was elected as an Alderman for St. Louis city's 5th ward as a Whig in 1854 and 1855 In 1855 he founded the Valley Farmer newspaper. As a result of his publication, Colman became a prominent figure in Missouri farming circles, which set the path for a political career in the Missouri House of Representatives. The publication of Colman’s newspaper was interrupted by the American Civil War, but three years after the war he founded the Colman’s Rural World. His political career continued, culminating with his election as the 17th Lieutenant Governor of Missouri from 1875 to 1877, as Democrat.
President Grover Cleveland appointed Colman Commissioner of Agriculture in 1885. During his tenure he led a coalition of land-grant agricultural colleges in writing proposed legislation for the creation of agricultural experiment stations. Their lobbying efforts helped produce the Hatch Act in 1887.
He also lobbied for the creation of the United States Department of Agriculture and served as its inaugural Secretary at the end of Cleveland’s term, February 15, 1889 to March 6, 1889. However, his position was never confirmed by the United States Senate. He returned to St. Louis to run his newspaper. He also spent the next 20 years in state public service and in horse-breeding.
Colman married Clara Porter in 1851. After Porter's death, and he married second wife, the former Catherine Wright in 1866. The couple had one daughter, Laura Kate Hill (Colman), who was the second wife of John Fremont Hill, Governor of Maine.
He died on November 3, 1911, and is buried in Bellefontaine Cemetery in St. Louis, Missouri.
He was a member of the Freemasons.
According to http://books.google.com/books?id=vWoZAQAAIAAJ&pg=PA293&lpg=PA293&dq=laura+colman+hill&source=bl&ots=GxA9JMrHMH&sig=imfwdja3YfVyQx4BatX-oMOa1vM&hl=en&sa=X&ei=kqigU97WEujlsASI9YDYAg&ved=0CFMQ6AEwBw#v=onepage&q=laura%20colman%20hill&f=false - Laura Colman was the daughter of Norman Colman and Clara Porter.
According to http://books.google.com/books?id=L9NKAAAAYAAJ&pg=PA114&lpg=PA114&dq=hamilton+colman+nancy+sprague&source=bl&ots=wP0SZRt6hH&sig=h5o69SEBJ-IZekto_F1IrgXlPIY&hl=en&sa=X&ei=06agU6OREoO-sQTP-IKYCw&ved=0CFwQ6AEwCQ#v=onepage&q=hamilton%20colman%20nancy%20sprague&f=false - Clara Colman was the daughter of Norman Colman and Kate Wright.
- Missouri Republican (3/27/1854) (4/1/1855)
- Grossman, 2
- Grossman, Mark. Encyclopedia of the United States Cabinet. Vols. 1-3. (2000) ISBN 978-0-87436-977-9.
- Leonard, John W. (comp) The Books of St. Louisans St. Louis, MO: St. Louis Republic, 1906) pp. 127–128.
- Marquis, Albert N. (comp) Who's Who in America Chicago, IL: Marquis and co. vol. 6 (1910–1911) p. 399.
Charles P. Johnson
|Lieutenant Governor of Missouri
1875 – 1877
Henry C. Brockmeyer
|U.S. Secretary of Agriculture
Served under: Grover Cleveland
February 15, 1889 – March 6, 1889
Jeremiah M. Rusk