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Edmunds, George Franklin

EDMUNDS, GEORGE FRANKLIN (1828- ), American lawyer and political leader, was born in Richmond, Vermont, on the 1st of February 1828. He began the practice of law in 1849. He was a member of the Vermont House of Representatives in 1854, 1855, 1857, 1858 and 1859, acting for the last two years as speaker, and was a member and president pro tem. of the state Senate in 1861-1862. In 1866 he became a member, as a Republican, of the United States Senate, where he remained until 1891, when he resigned in order to have more time for the practice of his profession. He took an active part in the attempt to impeach President Johnson. He was influential in providing for the electoral commission to decide the disputed presidential election of 1876, and became one of the commissioners. In the national Republican nominating conventions of 1880 and 1884 he was a candidate for the presidential nomination. From 1882 to 1885 he was president pro tem. of the Senate. As senator he was conspicuous on account of his legal and parliamentary attainments, his industry and his liberal opinions. He was the author of the so-called Edmunds Act (22nd of March 1882) for the suppression of polygamy in Utah, and of the anti-trust law of 1890, popularly known as the Sherman Act.

Note - this article incorporates content from Encyclopaedia Britannica, Eleventh Edition, (1910-1911)

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