Bradley Barlow

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Bradley Barlow
Bradley Barlow.jpg
Member of the
United States House of Representatives
from Vermont's 3rd district
In office
March 4, 1879 – March 3, 1881
Preceded byGeorge Whitman Hendee
Succeeded byWilliam W. Grout
Member of the Vermont House of Representatives
In office
1845
1850–1852
1864–1865
Personal details
Born(1814-05-12)May 12, 1814
Fairfield, Vermont, United States
DiedNovember 6, 1889(1889-11-06) (aged 75)
Denver, Colorado, United States
CitizenshipAmerican
Political partyGreenbacker
Spouse(s)Caroline Farnsworth
ChildrenDeborah Barlow, Helen K. Barlow, Joanna F. Barlow, Laura Barlow, Charlotte Barlow and Anna Barlow
ProfessionPolitician, Banker

Bradley Barlow (May 12, 1814 – November 6, 1889) was a nineteenth-century banker and politician who served as a U.S. Representative from Vermont.

Early life and career[edit]

Barlow was born in Fairfield, Vermont, son of Colonel Bradley and Deborah (Sherman) Barlow. Barlow attended the common schools and then engaged in mercantile pursuits in Philadelphia with his father until 1858, when he moved to St. Albans, Vermont.[1] Barlow began his banking career in St. Albans as a cashier.[2]

Originally a Democrat, and later a Republican, Barlow was a delegate to the Vermont State constitutional conventions in 1843, 1850, and 1857,[3] and was acting assistant secretary in 1843.[4] He was a member of the Vermont House of Representatives in 1845, 1850 to 1852, 1864, and 1865.[5] He engaged in banking and in the railroad business from 1860 to 1883. He was chairman of the school committee in St. Albans and president of the village corporation and treasurer of Franklin County from 1860 to 1867. Barlow served in the Vermont Senate from 1866 to 1868. In 1878 he was a candidate for the Republican nomination for Congress at a time when Vermont elected only Republicans to statewide and national office, and lost to William W. Grout. Barlow then ran as a "National Republican" with Democratic and Greenbacker support and won the general election, serving in the Forty-sixth United States Congress, March 4, 1879 to March 3, 1881.[6] He was not a candidate for renomination in 1880, and began to suffer business setbacks, largely engineered by Republicans including former Governor J. Gregory Smith, who were part of Vermont's business and banking community and resented Barlow's insurgency against the dominant Republican hierarchy.[7]

Scandals[edit]

Barlow was implicated [8][9][10] in the star routes mail scandal of 1876 in which he was identified as one of the most successful mail contractors in the country.

He was called to testify before Congress several times regarding the scandal. One of his first was in 1876, where he was accused of bribing Congress in 1872 with $40,000 to stop the initial investigation of the forty-second congress.[11]

Later years[edit]

Barlow was President of the Vermont National Bank in St. Albans when it failed in 1883 as a result of an unsuccessful attempt to sell his South Eastern Railway of Canada and an economic downturn. He declared bankruptcy, assigned all of his personal property to the bank and reported that he was penniless. The bank failure had severe repercussions for the town.[12] He was also accused of refusing to pay Vermont state taxes that year.[9]

In 1885, a judge in Montreal, Quebec, Canada rendered a judgement against Barlow and others for $1,550,929 for unrecovered promissory notes relating to the South Eastern Railway.[13]

His house, known as Villa Barlow, was taken over by the Congregation of Notre Dame based in Montreal, which had established a convent and school in St. Albans in 1869.[14] In 1903 the American-born Eliza Healy, whose mother was a slave in Georgia, was appointed mother superior at the convent and school, both of which she managed for 15 years.

Barlow later lived in Denver, Colorado with one of his daughters. He died in Denver on November 6, 1889, and was interred in Greenwood Cemetery in St. Albans, Vermont.[15]

Personal life[edit]

In 1837 he married Caroline Farnsworth. They had six children: Deborah Barlow, Helen K. Barlow, Joanna F. Barlow, Laura Barlow, Charlotte Barlow and Anna Barlow.[15]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dodge, Prentiss Cutler (1912). Encyclopedia, Vermont Biography: A Series of Authentic Biographical Sketches of the Representative Men of Vermont and Sons of Vermont in Other States. 1912. Ullery Publishing Company. pp. 76.
  2. ^ Haynes, L. Louise and Charlotte Pedersen (2010). St. Albans. Arcadia Publishing. p. 109.
  3. ^ "Barlow, Bradley (1814-1889)". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  4. ^ "Honorable Bradley Barlow". Barlow Genealogy. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  5. ^ "BARLOW, Bradley, (1814 - 1889)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  6. ^ "Rep. Bradley Barlow". Govtrack.us. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  7. ^ Samuel B. Hand, The Star That Set: The Vermont Republican Party, 1854-1974, 2003, page 43
  8. ^ "INDEX TO THE MISCELLANEOUS DOCUMENTS". March 23, 1879 – via Google Books.
  9. ^ a b "THE POSTAL INVESTIGATION.; BRADLEY BARLOW BEFORE THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON POSTAL AFFAIRS--HOW HIS FIRM SECURED CONTRACTS FROM THE GOVERNMENT--A DEMOCRATIC EXPLANATION ANXIOUSLY AWAITED" (PDF).
  10. ^ "A VAST SCHEME OF FRAUD; LIGHT THROWN UPON THE STAR ROUTE VILLAINIES. WHAT A CAREFUL STUDY OF THE RECORDS SHOWS. HOW THE NATION HAS BEEN ROBBED WITH IMPUNITY" (PDF).
  11. ^ "WASHINGTON; THE STRAW-BID POSTAL FRAUDS. TESTIMONY OF BARLOW--$40,000 PAID TO STOP AN INVESTIGATION--THE HOUSE COMMITTEE LOOKING FOR THE RECIPIENTS--WHY BARLOW WANTED THE INQUIRY OF 1872 STOPPED" (PDF).
  12. ^ "GENERAL TELEGRAPH NEWS; EMBARRASSED BY A RAILROAD SUSPENSION OF THE VERMONT NATIONAL BANK OF ST. ALBANS" (PDF).
  13. ^ "A JUDGMENT FOR $1,550,929" (PDF).
  14. ^ "Villa Barlow Convent". Barlow Genealogy. Retrieved December 26, 2012.
  15. ^ a b "Bradley Barlow". Find A Grave. Retrieved December 26, 2012.

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
George W. Hendee
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Vermont's 3rd congressional district

1879-1881
Succeeded by
William W. Grout