Abbott Lawrence, LL.D. (1792 - 1855)

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Birthplace: Groton, MA, USA
Death: Died in Boston, Massachusetts
Occupation: Businessman, Politician, and Philanthropist, and Founder of Lawrence, Massachusetts, Minister to Great Britain
Managed by: Sarah Hamilton Burns
Last Updated:

About Abbott Lawrence, LL.D.

Abbott Lawrence (December 16, 1792, Groton, Massachusetts – August 18, 1855) was a prominent American businessman, politician, and philanthropist. He founded Lawrence, Massachusetts.

Born in Groton, Massachusetts, the son of Revolutionay War officer Samuel Lawrence, Abbott Lawrence attended Groton Academy, (now Lawrence Academy at Groton.) Upon his graduation in 1808, Lawrence became an apprentice to his brother, Amos. Soon the Lawrences formed a partnership, specializing in imports from Britain and China, and later expanded their interests to textile manufacturing. They became extraordinarily wealthy. Many cite the Lawrence brothers as the founders of New England's influential textile industry.

In the 1820s, Lawrence became a prominent public figure--a vocal supporter of railroad construction for economic benefit, a very controversial stance at the time. In 1834, Lawrence was elected to the 24th Congress, as a Whig from Massachusetts. He did not run for renomination to the 25th Congress, but was re-elected to the 26th Congress. In 1842, he was appointed commissioner to settle the Northeastern Boundary Dispute between Canada and the United States.

In 1848, Lawrence was an unsuccessful candidate for the vice-presidency on the Whig ticket, headed by Zachary Taylor. With Taylor's presidential victory, he offered Lawrence a choice of administrative positions. After rejecting a cabinet appointment, Lawrence chose the post of minister to Great Britain. He filled that position with great distinction, and was involved in the negotiations of the Clayton-Bulwer Treaty. He resigned in 1852, and returned to the United States to join the presidential campaign of Gen. Winfield Scott; however, he soon grew dissatisfied with the Whig stand on slavery, and estranged himself from the party.

Lawrence was active in Boston's Unitarian Church. He actively promoted education for lower-class citizens, and donated money to various causes. He supported Lawrence Academy, affordable housing in Boston, and the Boston Public Library. He also provided funds to establish the Lawrence Scientific School at Harvard College. He died in Boston on August 18, 1855, aged 62, and was interred in Mount Auburn Cemetery, Cambridge, Massachusetts.

His nephew, Amos Adams Lawrence is also well-known.

ABBOTT LAWRENCE

 

Birth: Dec. 16, 1792 Death: Aug. 18, 1855

US Congressman. Elected to represent Massachusetts' 1st District in the United States House of Representatives, serving from 1835 to 1837, and 1839 to 1840. Also served as United States Minister to Great Britain from 1849 to 1852. (bio by: K)

 

Burial: Mount Auburn Cemetery Cambridge Middlesex County Massachusetts, USA


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Maintained by: Find A Grave Record added: May 27, 2003 Find A Grave Memorial# 7499786


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Abbott Lawrence, LL. D's Timeline

1792
December 16, 1792
Groton, MA, USA
1819
June 28, 1819
Age 26
1821
December 6, 1821
Age 28
Boston, Suffolk, Massachusetts, United States
1832
1832
Age 39
1855
August 18, 1855
Age 62
Boston, Massachusetts
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Cambridge, Middlesex, Massachusetts, United States