Jonathan Russell

Last updated
Jonathan Russell
Member of the U.S.HouseofRepresentatives
from Massachusetts's 11th district
In office
March 4, 1821 – March 3, 1823
Preceded by Benjamin Adams
Succeeded by Aaron Hobart
Member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives
In office
1820
Personal details
BornFebruary 27, 1771
Providence, Rhode Island
DiedFebruary 17, 1832 (aged 60)
Milton, Massachusetts
Resting placeRussell Family Cemetery (Milton, Massachusetts)
Political party Democratic-Republican Party
Spouse(s)Sylvia Ammidon (1773-1811) (M. 1796)
Lydia Smith (1786-1859) (M. 1817)
Alma mater Rhode Island College
ProfessionMerchant, Politician, Diplomat

Jonathan Russell (February 27, 1771 – February 17, 1832) was a United States Representative from Massachusetts and diplomat.

Massachusetts State of the United States of America

Massachusetts, officially the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, is the most populous state in the New England region of the northeastern United States. It borders on the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the states of Connecticut and Rhode Island to the south, New Hampshire and Vermont to the north, and New York to the west. The state is named after the Massachusett tribe, which once inhabited the east side of the area, and is one of the original thirteen states. The capital of Massachusetts is Boston, which is also the most populous city in New England. Over 80% of Massachusetts's population lives in the Greater Boston metropolitan area, a region influential upon American history, academia, and industry. Originally dependent on agriculture, fishing and trade, Massachusetts was transformed into a manufacturing center during the Industrial Revolution. During the 20th century, Massachusetts's economy shifted from manufacturing to services. Modern Massachusetts is a global leader in biotechnology, engineering, higher education, finance, and maritime trade.

Born in Providence, Rhode Island on February 27, 1771, Russell graduated from Brown University (then Rhode Island College) in 1791. He studied law and was admitted to the bar, but did not practice. He engaged in mercantile pursuits for a number of years. In 1808 he was appointed Collector of the Port of Bristol.

Providence, Rhode Island Capital of Rhode Island

Providence is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Rhode Island and is one of the oldest cities in the United States. It was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams, a Reformed Baptist theologian and religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He named the area in honor of "God's merciful Providence" which he believed was responsible for revealing such a haven for him and his followers. The city is situated at the mouth of the Providence River at the head of Narragansett Bay.

Brown University University in Providence, Rhode Island

Brown University is a private Ivy League research university in Providence, Rhode Island. Founded in 1764 as the College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, it is the seventh-oldest institution of higher education in the United States and one of the nine colonial colleges chartered before the American Revolution.

Bristol, Rhode Island Town in Rhode Island, United States

Bristol is a town in Bristol County, Rhode Island, as well as the county seat. It is a deep-water seaport named after Bristol, England.

He was appointed by President James Madison to the Diplomatic Service in France in 1811. He transferred to England, where he was Chargé d'Affaires when war was declared by the United States in 1812. He was Minister to Sweden and Norway from January 18, 1814 to October 16, 1818.

James Madison 4th president of the United States

James Madison Jr. was an American statesman, lawyer, diplomat, philosopher, and Founding Father who served as the fourth president of the United States from 1809 to 1817. He is hailed as the "Father of the Constitution" for his pivotal role in drafting and promoting the United States Constitution and the United States Bill of Rights. He also co-wrote The Federalist Papers, co-founded the Democratic-Republican Party, and served as the fifth United States secretary of State from 1801 to 1809.

England Country in north-west Europe, part of the United Kingdom

England is a country that is part of the United Kingdom. It shares land borders with Wales to the west and Scotland to the north. The Irish Sea lies west of England and the Celtic Sea to the southwest. England is separated from continental Europe by the North Sea to the east and the English Channel to the south. The country covers five-eighths of the island of Great Britain, which lies in the North Atlantic, and includes over 100 smaller islands, such as the Isles of Scilly and the Isle of Wight.

War of 1812 32-month military conflict between the United States and the British Empire

The War of 1812 was a conflict fought between the United States, the United Kingdom, and their respective allies from June 1812 to February 1815. Historians in Britain often see it as a minor theater of the Napoleonic Wars; in the United States and Canada, it is seen as a war in its own right.

"Jonathan Russell and the Capture of the Guerriere," by Lawrence S. Kaplan in The William and Mary Quarterly,Third Series, Vol. 24, No. 2 (Apr., 1967), published by the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, discusses the circumstances of Russell's authorship of a patriotic poem about the famous sea battle found in Russell's private papers (now mainly at Brown University's Library). The article quotes the entirety of the poem, dates it to approximately 1812, and speculates that Russell was motivated to write this anti-British work by the humiliation he had suffered while at the Court of St. James.

Russell was one of the five commissioners who negotiated the Treaty of Ghent with Great Britain in 1814, ending the War of 1812. He returned to the United States in 1818 and settled in Mendon, Massachusetts.

Treaty of Ghent December 1814 Peace Treaty ending the War of 1812

The Treaty of Ghent was the peace treaty that ended the War of 1812 between the United States of America and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. Both sides signed it on December 24, 1814, in the city of Ghent, United Netherlands. The treaty restored relations between the two nations to status quo ante bellum, restoring the borders of the two countries to the lines before the war started in June 1812. The treaty was approved by the UK parliament and signed into law by the Prince Regent on December 30, 1814. It took month for news of the peace treaty to reach the United States, during which American forces under Andrew Jackson won the Battle of New Orleans on January 8, 1815. The Treaty of Ghent was not fully in effect until it was ratified by the U.S. Senate unanimously on February 17, 1815. It began the more than two centuries of peaceful relations between the U.S. and Britain, although there were a few tense moments such as the Trent Affair in 1861.

Mendon, Massachusetts Town in Massachusetts, United States

Mendon is a town in Worcester County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 5,839 at the 2010 census. Mendon is part of the Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor, an early center of the industrial revolution in the United States. Mendon celebrated its 350th Anniversary on May 15, 2017.

On April 29, 1818, when Jonathan Russell presented his credentials as American Minister Plenipotentiary to Sweden.

He became a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1820 and was elected to the Seventeenth Congress (March 4, 1821 – March 3, 1823). He was chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs (Seventeenth Congress).

Massachusetts House of Representatives lower house of U.S. state legislature

The Massachusetts House of Representatives is the lower house of the Massachusetts General Court, the state legislature of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. It is composed of 160 members elected from 14 counties each divided into single-member electoral districts across the Commonwealth. The House of Representatives convenes at the Massachusetts State House in Boston.

17th United States Congress

The Seventeenth United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, consisting of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. While its term was officially March 4, 1821, to March 4, 1823, during the fifth and sixth years of James Monroe's presidency, its first session began on December 3, 1821, ending on May 8, 1822, and its second session began on December 2, 1822, to March 3, 1823. The apportionment of seats in the House of Representatives was based on the third Census of the United States in 1810. Both chambers had a Democratic-Republican majority.

The United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs of the United States House of Representatives, also known as the House Foreign Affairs Committee, is a standing committee of the United States House of Representatives, which has jurisdiction over bills and investigations related to the foreign affairs of the United States.

In 1822, Russell authored a pamphlet accusing John Quincy Adams, one of Russell's former fellow-negotiators at Ghent in 1814, of having favored British interests in those treaty talks. Russell intended the pamphlet to further Henry Clay's presidential candidacy against Adams in the 1824 election. Adams' responsive pamphlets were so devastating in impugning Russell's veracity that they engendered the phrase "to Jonathan Russell" someone, meaning to refute an attacker's falsehoods so effectively that it destroys the attacker's reputation.

John Quincy Adams 6th president of the United States

John Quincy Adams was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, and diarist who served as the sixth president of the United States from 1825 to 1829. He previously served as the eighth United States Secretary of State from 1817 to 1825. During his long diplomatic and political career, Adams also served as an ambassador, and represented Massachusetts as a United States Senator and as a member of the United States House of Representatives. He was the eldest son of John Adams, who served as the second US president from 1797 to 1801, and First Lady Abigail Adams. Initially a Federalist like his father, he won election to the presidency as a member of the Democratic-Republican Party, and in the mid-1830s became affiliated with the Whig Party.

Henry Clay American politician

Henry Clay Sr. was an American attorney and statesman who represented Kentucky in both the United States Senate and United States House of Representatives, served as 7th speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, and served as the 9th U.S. secretary of state. He received electoral votes for president in the 1824, 1832, and 1844 presidential elections and helped found both the National Republican Party and the Whig Party. For his role in defusing sectional crises, he earned the appellation of the "Great Compromiser."

1824 United States presidential election

The 1824 United States presidential election was the tenth quadrennial presidential election, held from October 26 to December 2, 1824. No candidate won a majority of the electoral vote, becoming the only election to require a contingent election in the House of Representatives under the provisions of the 12th Amendment. On February 9, 1825, the House chose John Quincy Adams as president. It was the first election in which the winner did not achieve at least a plurality of the national popular vote.

Russell died in Milton, Massachusetts on February 17, 1832, and was interred in the family plot on his estate in Milton.

Sources

Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
Benjamin Franklin
U.S. Ambassador to Sweden
1814–1818
Succeeded by
Christopher Hughes

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