Saturday, January 23, 2010
ONE OF OHIO'S PRESIDENTS
William McKinley (January 29, 1843 – September 14, 1901) was the 25th President of the United States. He was elected twice, in 1896 and 1900 but was assassinated in 1901 at the Pan-American Exposition in Buffalo, New York. He fought the Spanish-American War to gain control of Cuba, and afterwards annexed the Philippines and Puerto Rico, as well as Hawaii. He promoted high tariffs as a formula for prosperity, helped rebuild the Republican party in 1896 by introducing new campaign techniques, and presided over a return to prosperity after the Panic of 1893. He was succeeded by his Vice President, Theodore Roosevelt.
Born in Niles, Ohio on Sunday January 29, 1843, William McKinley was the seventh of nine children. His parents, William and Nancy (Allison) McKinley were of Scots-Irish ancestry. He graduated from Poland Academy and briefly attended Allegheny College.
In June 1861, at the start of the American Civil War, he enlisted in the Union Army, as a private in the Twenty-third Regiment, Ohio Volunteer Infantry. The regiment was sent to western Virginia where it spent a year fighting small Confederate units. His superior officer, another future U.S. President, Rutherford B. Hayes, promoted McKinley to commissary sergeant for his bravery in battle. For driving a mule team delivering rations under enemy fire at Antietam, he was promoted to second lieutenant by Hayes. This pattern repeated several times during the war, and McKinley eventually mustered out as Captain and brevet Major of the same regiment in September 1865.
Following the war, McKinley attended Albany Law School in Albany, New York and was admitted to the bar in 1867. He practiced law in Canton, Ohio, and became the prosecuting attorney of Stark County, Ohio, from 1869 to 1871
McKinley was elected as a Republican to the United States House of Representatives and served from 1877 to 1883 and again from March 4, 1885 to March 3, 1891.