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 You are in: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice > Former Secretaries of State > Biographies
Picture of Hamilton FishBIOGRAPHY

Hamilton Fish
Secretary of State, 
Term of Appointment: 03/17/1869 to 03/12/1877

  • Born in New York City on August 3,1808;
  • Graduated from Columbia College in 1827;
  • Admitted to the bar in 1830 and practiced in New York City;
  • Married Julia Kean in 1836;
  • Representative from New York 1843-1845;
  • Lieutenant Governor of New York in 1848 and Governor 1849-1850;
  • Senator from New York, 1851-1857;
  • President general of the Society of the Cincinnati, 1854-1893;
  • During the Civil War, was one of a Board of Commissioners of the Federal Government for the relief and exchange of prisoners;
  • President of the New York Historical Society 1867-1869;
  • Secretary of State in President Grant's Cabinet March 17, 1869, and served until March 12, 1877;
  • As Secretary of State, was one of the Commissioners of the United States who negotiated the Treaty of Washington of 1871 with Great Britain for the settlement of differences between the two countries, directed negotiations that resulted in the settlement of American claims against Spain, and signed the reciprocity treaty of 1875 with Hawaii;
  • Retired from public life;
  • Died at "Glen Clyffe", his estate near Garrison, New York, September 7, 1893.

Released on July 15, 2003

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