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About Jonathan Roberts
Jonathan Roberts (August 16, 1771 – July 24, 1854) was a United States Representative and Senator from Pennsylvania from 1811 to 1814 and 1814 to 1821 respectively.
Life and career
Roberts was born near Norristown, Pennsylvania and was educated by a private tutor. He later worked as a wheelwright apprentice. From 1799 to 1800 Roberts served as a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, and the Pennsylvania State Senate from 1807 to 1811.
On March 4, 1811, he began his tenure as a United States Representative from Pennsylvania's 2nd congressional district, having been elected as a Democratic-Republican. Working through the 12th and 13th United States Congresses he resigned on February 24, 1814, having been elected to the United States Senate to replace Michael Leib, who himself had resigned. He started his service in the Senate on the same day.
Re-elected in 1815 Roberts was the chairman of the Committee on Claims from the 14th through to the 16th Congress inclusive. During the 16th he was also on the Committee to Audit and Control the Contingent Expenses and the Committee on Public Buildings. He left the Senate on March 4, 1821.
From 1823 to 1826 he was again a member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, and later became the collector of customs at the port of Philadelphia from 1841 to 1842. In 1848, Roberts built a school in Upper Merion for poor children who had to walk some distance from mill workers' houses to their previous school.
He died at the age of 82 on his farm, Robertsville, in King of Prussia, and was interned in the Roberts family cemetery near Norristown.