John Renshaw Thomson (1800 - 1862)

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Death: Died
Occupation: elected for remainder of Stockton term,re-elected in 1857
Managed by: Bjørn P. Brox
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About John Renshaw Thomson

John Renshaw Thomson (September 25, 1800 – September 12, 1862) was an American merchant and politician from New Jersey.


Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, he attended the common schools in Princeton, New Jersey, and the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University). In 1817, he went to China and became a merchant in Canton where he was United States Consul from 1823 to 1825. He returned to the United States, married in the winter of 1825 Annie Stockton, a daughter of Richard Stockton, and settled in Princeton.

He was a director and Secretary of the Delaware and Raritan Canal Company; and was President, and later Treasurer, of the Philadelphia and Trenton Railroad. He was a delegate to the New Jersey State Constitutional Convention of 1844, and was the unsuccessful Democratic candidate for Governor of New Jersey the same year. In 1845, he married Josephine A. Ward, daughter of Congressman Aaron Ward.

He was elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of his brother-in~law Robert F. Stockton, and was re-elected in 1857, holding office from March 4, 1853, until his death in Princeton, New Jersey. He was Chairman of the Committee on Patents and the Patent Office (36th United States Congress) and the Committee on Pensions (Thirty-sixth Congress).

He was interred in Princeton Cemetery. His widow, Josephine Ward Thomson, married Gov. of Maryland Thomas Swann in 1878.

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John Renshaw Thomson, U.S. Senator's Timeline

September 25, 1800
Age 24
September 12, 1862
Age 61