Jeremiah Smith (lawyer)

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Jeremiah Smith
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from New Hampshire's At-large district (Seat 1)
In office
March 4, 1791 – July 26, 1797
Preceded by Abiel Foster
Succeeded by Peleg Sprague
6th Governor of New Hampshire
In office
June 8, 1809 – June 5, 1810
Preceded by John Langdon
Succeeded by John Langdon
Personal details
Born (1759-11-29)November 29, 1759
Peterborough, Province of New Hampshire
Died September 21, 1842(1842-09-21) (aged 82)
Dover, New Hampshire
Political party Federalist
Other political
Pro-Administration (until 1795)
Spouse(s) Elizabeth Ross, Elizabeth Hale (married twice)
Residence Exeter
Alma mater Harvard University, Rutgers College
Profession Attorney
Religion Presbyterian

Jeremiah Smith (November 29, 1759 – September 21, 1842) was an American lawyer, jurist and politician from Exeter, New Hampshire.

Born in Peterborough, New Hampshire, Smith attended Harvard University before graduating from Queens College, New Brunswick (now Rutgers University) in 1780. He served in the Continental Army, and read law to enter the bar in 1786. He was in private practice in Peterborough from 1786 to 1796. He was a member, of the New Hampshire State Legislature from 1798 to 1791, and represented the state in the United States House of Representatives from 1791 to 1797. He was a United States Attorney for the District of New Hampshire from 1797 to 1800. He was a probate judge of Rockingham County, New Hampshire from 1800 to 1801.

On February 18, 1801, Smith was nominated by President John Adams to a new seat as a federal judge on the United States circuit court for the First Circuit, created by 2 Stat. 89. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 20, 1801, and received his commission the same day. Smith's federal judicial service was terminated on July 1, 1802, due to abolition of the court. He then became Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of New Hampshire, from 1802 to 1809.

Smith was elected Governor of New Hampshire in 1809, defeating incumbent Governor John Langdon by only 319 votes. However, Langdon defeated Smith in the following election, in 1810. Smith returned to the private practice of law from 1810 until 1813, when he again became Chief Justice of the Supreme Judicial Court of New Hampshire, this time until 1816, when he was removed by the elimination of the court by the legislature.[1] He again returned to private practice New Hampshire from 1816 to 1820.

Smith was elected a member of the American Antiquarian Society in 1814.[2]

Smith died in 1842 in Dover, New Hampshire, and is buried at the Winter Street Cemetery in Exeter.


  1. ^ See John H. Morrison, Life of the Honorable Jeremiah Smith, Little & Brown, 1845.
  2. ^ American Antiquarian Society Members Directory

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Abiel Foster
Member of the House of Representatives
from New Hampshire's At-large (Seat 1) congressional district

Succeeded by
Peleg Sprague
Legal offices
Preceded by
Edward St. Loe Livermore
3rd United States Attorney
for the
District of New Hampshire

Succeeded by
Edward St. Loe Livermore
Political offices
Preceded by
John Langdon
Governor of New Hampshire
Succeeded by
John Langdon