John Scott collection of letters, 1854-1874 (bulk 1873-1874).

Scott, John, 1824-1896.
2 boxes (.8 linear foot)
United States. Congress
United States. Congress -- Constituent communication.
Manuscripts, American -- 19th century.
In English, with replies by Scott in shorthand (apparently Pitman system) marked on several letters.
John Scott, son of John and Agnes Scott, was an American lawyer and statesman from Pennsylvania. Born in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, he attended Marshall College (modern Franklin & Marshall College) and returned to Huntingdon where he practiced law from 1846 to 1869, serving as a prosecuting attorney from 1846 to 1849. A member of the Republican party, he served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives from 1862 to 1868. In 1868, he ran successfully for the United States Senate, where he served until 1875. In 1870 he convened an inquiry into the atrocities of the Ku Klux Klan, and participated in the 1871-1872 Congressional investigation on the status of Reconstruction in former states of the Confederacy. He also served on the United States Senate Committee on Claims during the 43rd Congress from 1873 to 1875. He was not a candidate for re-election in 1875, and relocated to Pittsburgh where he served as general counsel of the Pennsylvania Railroad from 1875 to 1877 and general solicitor from 1877 to 1895. He died in Philadelphia in 1896 and is buried at Woodlands Cemetery.
The John Scott collection consists of letters and telegrams written to John Scott, U.S. Senator from Pennsylvania from 1868 to 1875, by constituents, colleagues, and correspondents. The letters' subject matter is varied, reflecting the concerns and interests of numerous constituents and individuals concerning local affairs, favors, and Republican party politics during the Reconstruction Era. The collection is organized chronologically, and multiple items falling under the same date are organized alphabetically within that date. This organization recreates the approximate order in which Scott received these letters, and thus reconstructs "a month in the life" of the senator via his correspondence. Due to the sundry topics broached by the letters there is no single subject concentration within the collection. Rather, it is a relatively concentrated snapshot of a senator's daily interaction with his correspondents. Several letters have Scott's reply in shorthand. The collection will be of interest to researchers studying the correspondence of U.S. politicians and the daily business of interacting with constituents during the Reconstruction Era.
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