William D. Williamson
William D. Williamson
|2nd Governor of Maine|
May 28, 1821 – December 5, 1821
|Preceded by||William King|
|Succeeded by||Benjamin Ames|
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives|
from Maine's 4th district
March 4, 1821 – March 3, 1823
|Preceded by||District created|
|Succeeded by||Joshua Cushman|
|Member of the Massachusetts Senate|
|Born||July 31, 1779|
Canterbury, Connecticut, United States
|Died||May 27, 1846(aged 66)|
|Political party||Democratic-Republican Party|
(m. 1806; her death 1822)
Susan E. White
Clarissa Emerson Wiggin
(m. 1825; his death 1846)
|Relations||Joseph Williamson (brother)|
Mary Foster Williamson
|Alma mater||Williams College|
William Durkee Williamson (July 31, 1779 – May 27, 1846) was the second Governor of the U.S. state of Maine, and one of the first congressmen from Maine in the United States House of Representatives. He was a member of the Democratic-Republican Party. Williamson was also an early historian of Maine.
Williamson was born on July 31, 1779, in Canterbury, Connecticut, and was named after his father's maternal grandfather and eldest brother, William Durkee. He was the oldest son born to George Williamson, who served in the Army during the Revolutionary War, and Mary (née Foster) Williamson. His younger brother, Joseph Williamson, later served as Senate President.
Williamson moved to Bangor, then part of Massachusetts, in the first decade of the 19th century and established a law practice there in 1807. He became Bangor's postmaster (among other offices) in 1810. During the War of 1812 he was present at the capture and sacking of Bangor by the British following the Battle of Hampden and, like all male residents of the town, was made to sign an oath declaring he would not take up arms for the remainder of the war.
Following the war, in 1816, Williamson was elected to the Massachusetts State Senate representing the District of Maine, but became a force behind the movement for Maine statehood.
In 1820, Maine separated from Massachusetts to become a state, and Williamson became the third President of the Maine State Senate. In 1821, when the first governor, William King resigned, Williamson automatically succeeded him as he was president of the Senate. Williamson served as governor from May 29, 1821, to December 5, 1821.
Williamson returned to his law practice in Bangor, also serving as Judge of Probate for Penobscot County until 1840.
Williamson was one of Maine's first historians, writing a 2-volume History of the State of Maine in the late 1830s. This stood as the standard reference on early Maine history for the rest of the 19th century. He was an original member of the Maine Historical Society.
Williamson was married to Jemima Montague at Amherst, Massachusetts, on June 10, 1806. She was the youngest daughter of Josiah and Submit Rice, who had been adopted into the family of her uncle, Gen. Zebina Montague. Before her death in Bangor, Maine, on June 22, 1822, at the age of 36, they were the parents of five children together:
- Caroline J. Williamson, who married Nathaniel Haynes, a lawyer. After his death, she married John Chapman of Boston.
- Harriet H. Williamson (d. 1884), who married Paul R. Hazeltine, a merchant from Belfast, Maine.
- William F. Williamson (d. 1832), who died, aged 18, during his junior year at Bowdoin College.
- Mary C. Williamson, who married Richard W. Shapleigh. After his death, she married Livingston Livingston, a lawyer from New York.
- Frances A. Williamson (d. 1847), who married Mayo Hazeltine of Boston.
On June 3, 1823, he remarried to Susan E. White, the daughter of Judge Phineas White of Putney, Vermont. She died, less than a year after their marriage, on March 9, 1824. Williamson married for the third time in 1825 to Clarissa (née Emerson) Wiggin, the widow of Joseph Wiggin and daughter of Edward and Abigail Emerson of York, Maine.
Through his youngest daughter Frances, he was the grandfather of Frances Clarissa Hazeltine, who married Edward Livingston, a prominent businessman and clubman. He was also the grandfather of Professor Henry W. Haynes of Boston, Mayo W. Hazeltine and Philip Livingston, a graduate of Columbia College.
- The History of the State of Maine: From Its First Discovery, A.D. 1602, to the Separation, A.D. 1820, Inclusive, Volume 1, by William Durkee Williamson.
- The History of the State of Maine: From Its First Discovery, 1602, to the Separation, A.D. 1820, Inclusive, Volume 2, by William Durkee Williamson.
- The Maine Historical and Genealogical Recorder. S. M. Watson. 1888. p. 79. Retrieved January 17, 2019.
- "Maine Governor William Durkee Williamson". National Governors Association. Retrieved August 18, 2012.
- "Governor William D. Williamson". Representative Men of Maine. Retrieved August 18, 2012.
- The Maine Historical Magazine. 1886. p. 124.
- History of Penobscot County, Maine: With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches. Williams, Chase & Company. 1882. p. 207. Retrieved January 17, 2019.
- Memorial Biographies of New England Historic Genealogical Society, 1853-1855. New England Historic Genealogical Society. 1880. p. 28. Retrieved January 17, 2019.
- Talcott, Sebastian V. (October 1, 2001). Genealogical Notes Of New York And New England Families. Heritage Books. pp. 146–147. ISBN 9780788419560. Retrieved May 18, 2017.
- "NYC Marriage & Death Notices 1857-1868". www.nysoclib.org. New York Society Library. Retrieved January 17, 2019.
- United States Congress. "William D. Williamson (id: W000554)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
- William D. Williamson at Find a Grave
- Representative Men of Maine
- National Governors Association
| Governor of Maine
| President of the Maine Senate
|U.S. House of Representatives|
| Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Maine's 4th congressional district
March 4, 1821 – March 3, 1823