Presley Spruance

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Presley Spruance
SpruancePresley.jpg
United States Senator
from Delaware
In office
March 4, 1847 – March 3, 1853
Preceded by Thomas Clayton
Succeeded by John M. Clayton
Personal details
Born (1785-09-11)September 11, 1785
Smyrna, Delaware
Died February 13, 1863(1863-02-13) (aged 77)
Smyrna, Delaware
Political party Whig
Residence Smyrna, Delaware
Occupation merchant

Presley Spruance (September 11, 1785 - February 13, 1863) was an American merchant and politician from Smyrna, in Kent County, Delaware. He was a member of the Federalist and later the Whig Party, who served in the Delaware General Assembly and as U.S. Senator from Delaware.

Early life and family[edit]

Spruance was born in Kent County, Delaware.

Professional and political career[edit]

He was engaged in manufacturing and mercantile pursuits in Smyrna, Delaware, where he was a member of the State House for the 1823 and 1839/40 sessions. In between these he was elected to the State Senate for the sessions from 1826 through 1831, again in 1835/36 and 1837/38, and returned for the 1841/42 and 1843/44 sessions and finally in 1847, several times serving as Speaker. He was elected as a Whig to the United States Senate and served one term from March 4, 1847 to March 3, 1853. Following his term he returned to his business pursuits.

Death and legacy[edit]

Spruance died in Smyrna and is buried there in the Presbyterian Cemetery.

A house be built at Smyrna is a contributing property in the Smyrna Historic District.[1]

Almanac[edit]

Elections were held the first Tuesday of October. U.S. Representatives were popularly elected March 4 for a two-year term. The General Assembly chose the U.S. Senators, who also took office March 4, but for a six-year term.


Public Offices
Office Type Location Began office Ended office notes
State Representative Legislature Dover January 4, 1823 January 3, 1824
State Senator Legislature Dover January 4, 1826 January 3, 1829 Speaker
State Senator Legislature Dover January 4, 1829 January 3, 1832
State Senator Legislature Dover January 4, 1835 January 3, 1839 Speaker
State Representative Legislature Dover January 4, 1839 January 3, 1841
State Senator Legislature Dover January 4, 1841 January 3, 1845 Speaker
State Senator Legislature Dover January 4, 1847 March 4, 1847
U.S. Senator Legislative Washington March 4, 1847 March 3, 1853 class 2
Delaware General Assembly service
Dates Congress Chamber Majority Governor Committees Class/District
1822 47th State House Republican Joseph Haslet
Charles Thomas
Kent at-large
1825 50th State Senate Federalist Samuel Paynter Kent at-large
1826 51st State Senate Federalist Charles Polk, Jr. Kent at-large
1827 52nd State Senate Federalist Charles Polk, Jr. Speaker Kent at-large
1828 53rd State Senate Federalist Charles Polk, Jr. Kent at-large
1829 54th State Senate Whig David Hazzard Kent at-large
1830 55th State Senate Whig David Hazzard Kent at-large
1835/36 58th State Senate Whig Caleb Bennett
Charles Polk, Jr.
Kent at-large
1837/38 59th State Senate Whig Cornelius Comegys Speaker Kent at-large
1839/40 60th State House Whig Cornelius Comegys Kent at-large
1841/42 61st State Senate Whig William B. Cooper Kent at-large
1843/44 62nd State Senate Whig William B. Cooper Speaker Kent at-large
1847/48 64th State Senate Whig William Tharp Kent at-large
United States Congressional service
Dates Congress Chamber Majority President Committees Class/District
1847–1849 30th U.S. Senate Democratic James K. Polk class 2
1849–1851 31st U.S. Senate Democratic Zachary Taylor
Millard Fillmore
class 2
1851–1853 32nd U.S. Senate Democratic Millard Fillmore class 2

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Dean E. Nelson (April 1979). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory/Nomination: Smyrna Historic District". National Park Service. 

References[edit]

  • Scharf, John Thomas (1888). History of Delaware 1609-1888. 2 vols. Philadelphia: L. J. Richards & Co. 
  • Conrad, Henry C. (1908). History of the State of Delaware, 3 vols. Lancaster, Pennsylvania: Wickersham Company. 

External links[edit]