Asa S. Bushnell

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Asa Smith Bushnell
Asa S. Bushnell (Governor) 1896 2.jpg
40th Governor of Ohio
In office
January 13, 1896 – January 8, 1900
LieutenantAsa W. Jones
Preceded byWilliam McKinley
Succeeded byGeorge K. Nash
Personal details
Born(1834-09-16)September 16, 1834
Rome, New York, U.S.
DiedJanuary 15, 1904(1904-01-15) (aged 69)
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
Resting placeFerncliff Cemetery, Springfield, Ohio
Political partyRepublican
SpouseEllen Ludlow
Military service
AllegianceUnited States of America
Branch/serviceUnion Army
Years of service1864
Unit152nd Ohio Infantry
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War

Asa Smith Bushnell I (September 16, 1834 – January 15, 1904) was an American Republican politician from Ohio. He served as the 40th governor of Ohio. Prior to becoming governor, he served as the president of the Warder, Bushnell and Glessner Company, which became one of four companies that merged to form International Harvester. Other roles in business included serving as president of the Springfield Gas Company and the First National Bank of Springfield.[1]


Bushnell was born in Rome, New York and moved to Springfield, Ohio at age 17. During the American Civil War, he raised a company of men for the 152nd Ohio Infantry, a 100 days regiment, and served as captain from May to September 1864.[2] He was a Presidential elector in 1884 for Blaine/Logan.[3] A business executive, Bushnell served as the Ohio State Republican Party Chair in 1885. He succeeded William McKinley as governor, serving two two-year terms from 1896 to 1900.

Valentine Anti-Trust Act[edit]

During the Bushnell administration, Ohio took an early leadership role in trust-busting. The Valentine Anti-Trust Act was signed into law by Bushnell. This Act prohibited price fixing, and production limitation. All of these practices helped businesses by driving up the prices for their products, thus harming the consumer. In addition to Valentine Anti-Trust Act, Bushnell's attorney general pursued the monopolistic practices of the Standard Oil Company in the courts. Eventually, U.S. Senator John Sherman of Ohio introduced the Sherman Antitrust Act in the United States Congress in 1890. This law served as the first serious attempt by the federal government to break up monopolies and trusts, though successful enforcement of anti-trust laws was still more than a decade, and new political commitment, away.[4]


Bushnell came from his home at Springfield in January 1904 to attend the inauguration of Governor Myron T. Herrick at Columbus. After the ceremony, he entered his carriage to return home, was struck with apoplexy before reaching the railroad station, and died at a Columbus hospital four days later.[5][6] He was buried in the Ferncliff Cemetery, Springfield on January 18, 1904.[5][7]


Bushnell married Ellen Ludlow of Springfield, September 17, 1857. They had two daughters and a son.[8] He was a member of the Masons, the Grand Army of the Republic, and the Episcopal Church[5]


Gov. Asa S. Bushnell House, 838 E. High St., Springfield, Ohio (1885-88). Now a funeral home.

Bushnell and his wife built a Richardson Romanesque mansion in Springfield, Ohio. The house was not designed by Henry Hobson Richardson, but by Richardson’s firm soon after the architect's death. Both of Bushnell's business partners, Benjamin Head Warder and John Glessner, had earlier hired Richardson to design their houses: the Warder Mansion in Washington, DC, and the John J. Glessner House in Chicago. Glessner's house is considered one of Richardson's greatest designs.

The Bushnell House is part of Springfield's East High Street Historic District,[9] which is on the National Register of Historic Places.[10]


  1. ^ "Asa Bushnell House" Archived 2011-03-19 at the Wayback Machine Greater Springfield, Ohio Web site. Retrieved 6/5/09.
  2. ^ Reid, Whitelaw (1895). "152d Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry". Ohio in the War Her Statesmen Generals and Soldiers. Vol. 2. Cincinnati: The Robert Clarke Company. p. 683.
  3. ^ Taylor 1899 : vol. 2, 106
  4. ^ "Valentine Anti-Trust Act" Ohio History Central. Retrieved 6/5/09.
  5. ^ a b c Atwood, J. W. (1904). "Asa S. Bushnell". Ohio Archaeological and Historical Publications. 13: 282–286.
  6. ^ "Ohio's Former Chief Executive Dies at State Capital, Body Removed to Springfield Where Funeral Will Take Place. Opponent of Senator Hanna". The New York Times. January 16, 1904. Retrieved 2010-11-15.
  7. ^ "Asa Smith Bushnell". National Governors Association. Retrieved 27 October 2017.
  8. ^ Mercer, James K; Vallandigham, C N (1896). Representative men of Ohio, 1896-97. Columbus: Mercer and Vallandigham. pp. 7–9.
  9. ^ National Register District Address Finder Archived September 28, 2013, at the Wayback Machine, Ohio Historical Society, 2013. Accessed 2013-01-18.
  10. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by Governor of Ohio
Succeeded by
Party political offices
Preceded by Republican Party nominee for Governor of Ohio
1895, 1897
Succeeded by