JOHNSON, Reverdy (1796-1876)

JOHNSON, REVERDY, (brother-in-law of Thomas Fielder Bowie), a Senator from Maryland; born in Annapolis, Md., May 21, 1796; graduated, St. John's College, Annapolis, Md., 1811; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1815 and commenced practice in Upper Marlboro; deputy attorney general of Maryland 1816-1817; moved to Baltimore in 1817; appointed chief commissioner of insolvent debtors of Maryland in 1817; member, State senate 1821-1829; resumed the practice of law in Baltimore; elected to the United States Senate as a Whig and served from March 4, 1845, to March 7, 1849, when he resigned to become Attorney General; appointed by President Zachary Taylor Attorney General of the United States 1849-1850; member of the peace convention of 1861 held in Washington, D.C., in an effort to devise means to prevent the impending war; member, State house of representatives 1860-1861; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1863, to July 10, 1868, when he resigned; United States Minister to England in 1868 and 1869; returned to Baltimore, Md., where he resumed the practice of his profession; compiler of the reports of decisions of the Maryland Court of Appeals; died in Annapolis, Md., February 10, 1876; interment in Greenmount Cemetery, Baltimore, Md.

Boston Public Library
Boston, MA
Papers: 6 items.

Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA
Papers: Correspondence in Meredith family papers, 1756-1888 (bulk 1756, 1793-1866, 1888).

Johns Hopkins University
Milton S. Eisenhower Library
Baltimore, MD
Papers: Miscellaneous letters regarding founding of the university and role as trustee in Board of Trustees records, 1867-1986; in Bank of Maryland scrapbook, 1835; and Edward M. Greenway collection, 1737-1876.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division
Washington, DC
Papers: 1830-1876. 1 foot. Correspondence relating to early law practice, service as senator, as special inquirer in the case (1862) of General Benjamin Butler at New Orleans, and as minister to the Court of St. James. Also correspondence in Nicholas Philip Trist papers, 1795-1873.

Maryland Historical Society
Baltimore, MD
Papers: 1818-1876. 5 boxes; 400 items. Correspondence, testimonials, newspaper clippings, and scrapbooks concerning his Civil War work and diplomatic career, and portraits. Also letters in various other collections.

New York State Library
Manuscripts and Special Collections
Albany, NY
Papers: In autographs of American authors and statesmen collection, ca. 1770-1865.

Newberry Library
Chicago, IL
Papers: Correspondence in Daniel Stevens Dickinson papers, 1799-1892. Finding aid.

Pierpont Morgan Library
New York, NY
Papers: 1824-1848. 6 items.

State Historical Society of Wisconsin
Archives Division
Madison, WI
Papers: In John Given Davis papers, 1800-1889.

University of Maryland
Historical Manuscripts, Special Collections
College Park, MD
Papers: 13 items (1834-1879) in Maryland manuscripts collection. Includes printed Senate speeches, correspondence, and records from various legal cases; and in Charles Lanman collection.

University of Rochester
Rush Rhees Library
Rochester, NY
Papers: 56 letters by and 7 to Johnson (1848-1872) in various collections. Finding aid.

Virginia Historical Society
Richmond, VA
Papers: Miscellaneous items. Finding aid.

Yale University Libraries
Manuscripts and Archives
New Haven, CT
Papers: Correspondence in William Wirt papers, 1786-1850, on 24 microfilm reels of originals in Maryland Historical Society; Jeremiah S. Black papers, 1813-1894 (bulk 1842-1884), on 36 microfilm reels of originals in Library of Congress; and James Watson Webb papers, 1819-1967 (bulk 1819-1890).

  • Steiner, Bernard Christian. Life of Reverdy Johnson. 1914. Reprint. New York: Russell & Russell, 1970.
  • ___. "Reverdy Johnson Papers in the Library of Congress.'' Maryland Historical Magazine 15 (March 1920): 42-55.
  • U.S. Supreme Court. Proceedings of the Bench and Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States in Memoriam Reverdy Johnson. Washington: J.L. Pearson, 1876.