John Hanson (Liberian politician)

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John Hanson, c. 1856, from a daguerreotype attributed to Augustus Washington[1]

John Hanson (died c. 1860) was an African American politician in Liberia. He served in Colonial Council and as a senator from Grand Bassa County following Liberia's independence in 1847. He was born into slavery, but he purchased his freedom and emigrated from Baltimore to Liberia at age thirty-six.[2] In Liberia, he joined the growing mercantile class. He also served as Commissary in the same county for several years, furnishing a house for the storage of arms and ammunition.[3] Hanson died in 1860, and was mourned as a "faithful and patriotic servant" by Liberian president Stephen Allen Benson.

Senator Hanson has sometimes been misidentified as being John Hanson of Maryland, a white[4] politician who served as a President of the Continental Congress during the American Revolution.


  1. ^ "American Colonization Society". Library of Congress. Archived from the original on Feb 5, 2010. Retrieved 2018-01-15.
  2. ^ Dinius, Marcy J. "The Camera and the Press" pg. 182
  3. ^ "The Statute Laws of the Republic of Liberia" Vol. I, pg. 233
  4. ^ Peterson, Audrey (March 6, 2009). "Black History Urban Legends". American Legacy. Archived from the original on March 31, 2009.