James Stewart Martin (congressman)

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James Stewart Martin (August 19, 1826 – November 20, 1907) was a U.S. Representative from Illinois.


Martin was born in Estillville (now Gate City), Scott County, Virginia, the son of John S. Martin and Melinda Morison.[1] His father's second wife was Nancy Brownlow, making him a step- nephew of radical Tennessee governor William "Parson" Brownlow.[2] He attended the common schools and Emory and Henry College in Emory, Virginia. He moved to Salem, Illinois, in 1846. He served during the Mexican War in Company C, First Regiment of Illinois Volunteers. He studied law. He was admitted to the bar in 1861 and commenced practice in Salem, Illinois. He served as clerk of the Marion County Court. During the Civil War Martin served in the Union Army. Commissioned colonel of the One Hundred and Eleventh Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, September 18, 1862. Brevetted brigadier general of Volunteers February 26, 1865. Honorably mustered out June 7, 1865. He served as judge of Marion County Court. He was appointed by President Grant as United States pension agent on April 13, 1869.

Martin was elected as a Republican to the Forty-third Congress (March 4, 1873 – March 3, 1875), defeating Silas L. Bryan, the father of William Jennings Bryan by a vote of 12,266 to 12,016. He was an unsuccessful candidate for re-election. He served as commissioner of the Southern Illinois Penitentiary at Menard in 1879. He died in Salem, Illinois, November 20, 1907. He was interred in East Lawn Cemetery.


  1. ^ Green Raum, History of Illinois Republicanism, (Chicago, Ill.: Rollins Publishing Company, 1900), p. 311. Retrieved 13 April 2014.
  2. ^ Zella Armstrong, Notable Southern Families, Volume 1, (Chattanooga, Tenn.: The Lookout Publishing Co., 1918), p. 44. OCLC 1079125. Retrieved: 29 October 2012.

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website http://bioguide.congress.gov.

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
District created
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 16th congressional district

Succeeded by
William A. J. Sparks