Benjamin Alden Bidlack

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Benjamin Alden Bidlack
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 11th district
In office
March 4, 1843 – March 3, 1845
Preceded by James Gerry
Succeeded by Owen D. Leib
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 15th district
In office
March 4, 1841 – March 3, 1843
Preceded by David Petrikin
Succeeded by Henry Nes
Personal details
Born (1804-09-08)September 8, 1804
Paris, New York
Died February 6, 1849(1849-02-06) (aged 44)
Political party Democratic

Benjamin Alden Bidlack (September 8, 1804 – February 6, 1849) was a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Pennsylvania.

Benjamin Alden Bidlack was born in Paris, New York. He moved to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and attended the public schools. He graduated from the Wilkes-Barre Academy, studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1825 and commenced practice in Wilkes-Barre. He was elected district attorney of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania, in 1825. He moved to Milford, Pennsylvania, in 1830, and served as Pike County treasurer in 1834. He returned to Wilkes-Barre, and was elected a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives in 1835 and 1836. He was editor of the Republican Farmer and the Democratic Journal in Wilkes-Barre.

Bidlack was elected as a Democrat to the Twenty-seventh and Twenty-eighth Congresses. He was appointed Chargé d'Affaires to Colombia on May 14, 1845. He successfully negotiated a “treaty of peace, amity, and navigation” with Colombia and secured for the United States the right to build a canal or railroad across the Isthmus of Panama. He died in Bogotá, Colombia in 1849, aged 44. He was interred in the English Cemetery.

He is known because he signed The Mallarino–Bidlack Treaty (also known as the Bidlack Treaty and Treaty of New Granada); a treaty signed between New Granada (today Colombia and Panama) and the United States, on December 12, 1846.[1] U.S. minister Benjamin Alden Bidlack negotiated the pact with New Granada's commissioner Manuel María Mallarino.


  1. ^ Kellogg Institute at the University of Notre Dame, November 14, 1996. "Towards 1999 : Highlights of an Historical Review (US-Panama Relations) in the context of an Electoral and Democratic Evolution" by Eduardo Valdés E.


United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
David Petrikin
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 15th congressional district

Succeeded by
Henry Nes
Preceded by
James Gerry
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 11th congressional district

Succeeded by
Owen D. Leib
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
William M. Blackford
United States Chargé d'Affaires, New Granada
5 December 1845 – 6 February 1849
Succeeded by
Thomas M. Foote