Joseph B. Foraker, c. 1902

Joseph B. Foraker (1846–1917) was the 37th Governor of Ohio (1886–1890) and a Republican U.S. Senator (1897–1909). Born in rural Ohio, Foraker enlisted in the Union Army at age 16 and fought in the Civil War. After the war, he was a member of Cornell's first graduating class, and became a lawyer; he was elected a judge in 1879. Although defeated in his first run for governor in 1883, he was elected in 1885. Foraker lost re-election in 1889, but was elected senator by the legislature in 1896. In the Senate, he supported the Spanish-American War and the annexation of the Philippines and Puerto Rico. He differed with President Theodore Roosevelt over the Brownsville Affair, in which black soldiers had been accused of terrorizing a Texas town; Roosevelt had dismissed the entire battalion. Foraker fought unsuccessfully for their reinstatement, and Roosevelt helped defeat Foraker's re-election bid. In 1972, the Army reversed the dismissals and cleared the soldiers. (Full article...)

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