The Info List - Truman Smith

Truman Smith (November 27, 1791 – May 3, 1884) was a Whig member of the United States Senate from Connecticut from 1849 to 1854 and a member of the United States House of Representatives from Connecticut's 4th and 5th congressional districts from 1845 to 1849 and from 1849 to 1854. He also served in the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1831 to 1832, and in 1834.


Smith was born in Roxbury, Connecticut. He was the nephew of Nathaniel Smith and Nathan Smith. Smith completed preparatory studies and graduated from Yale College in 1815. He studied law at Litchfield Law School and was admitted to the bar in 1818, commencing practice in Litchfield, Connecticut.[1] He married Maria Cook on June 2, 1832, and they had three children, Catherine Marie Smith, Jeannie Penniman (Jane) Smith, and George Webster Smith. His wife, Marie, died on April 20, 1849. He married Mary Ann Dickinson Walker on November 7, 1850, by whom he had six children, Truman Houston Smith, Samuel Hubbard Smith, Edmond Dickinson Smith, Robert Shufeldt Smith, Henry Humphry Smith, and Allen Hoyt Smith.[2]


Smith was a member of the Connecticut House of Representatives from 1831 to 1832 and again in 1834. He was elected a Whig to the United States House of Representatives, representing the 5th district, during the Twenty-sixth and Twenty-seventh Congresses, and serving from March 4, 1839 to March 3, 1843,[3] declining renomination in 1842.

Smith was a presidential elector on the Whig ticket in 1844 He was elected back to the House of Representatives representing the 4th District for the Twenty-ninth and Thirtieth Congresses. He served from March 4, 1845, to March 3, 1849. Smith declined the appointment to be the first United States Secretary of the Interior from President Zachary Taylor in 1849 having been elected to the United States Senate. He served from March 4, 1849, until his resignation May 24, 1854.[4]

Afterwards, he lived in Stamford, Connecticut with his second wife, Mary Ann Dickinson Smith, while practicing law in New York City, New York. Mary Ann was the adopted daughter of the miniaturist Anson Dickinson.[5] Smith's New York law office was open from 1854 to 1871.[6] In 1862, President Abraham Lincoln appointed Smith judge of the Court of Arbitration under the treaty of 1862 with Great Britain for the suppression of the slave trade where he served until 1870.


Smith retired from business that year and died in Stamford, Connecticut on May 3, 1884,(age 92 years, 158 days). He is interned at Stamford in Woodland Cemetery.[7]


  1. ^ "Truman Smith". Litchfield Historical Society. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  2. ^ Truman Smith. The Cyclopædia of American biography, Volume 5. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  3. ^ "Truman Smith". Govtrack US Congress. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  4. ^ "Truman Smith". Govtrack US Congress. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  5. ^ Shelton 2008.
  6. ^ Truman Smith. The Cyclopædia of American biography, Volume 5. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 
  7. ^ "Truman Smith". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved 13 January 2013. 

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Lancelot Phelps
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 5th congressional district

March 4, 1839 – March 4, 1843
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Samuel Simons
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Connecticut's 4th congressional district

March 4, 1845 – March 4, 1849
Succeeded by
Thomas B. Butler
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
John M. Niles
U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Connecticut
March 4, 1849 – May 24, 1854
Served alongside: Roger S. Baldwin and Isaac Toucey
Succeeded by
Francis Gillette

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