Hon. Samuel Hoar, Jr.

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Samuel Hoar, Jr.

Birthdate: (78)
Birthplace: Lincoln, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
Death: Died in Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
Place of Burial: Concord, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Samuel Hoar and Susannah Hoar
Husband of Sarah Hoar
Father of Elizabeth Sherman Farnsworth; Sarah Sherman Hoar; Samuel Hoar, III; Edward Sherman Hoar; George Frisbie Hoar, U.S. Senator and 1 other

Occupation: Lawyer, Member of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Hon. Samuel Hoar, Jr.

Samuel Hoar (1778-1856), a native of Lincoln, Massachusetts, and Sarah Sherman (1785-1862) of New Haven, Connecticut married in the fall of 1813 and made their home in Concord, Massachusetts. Both Samuel and Sarah were from distinguished families. Leonard Hoar was President of Harvard College 1672-75. Sarah's father, Roger Sherman, was a signer of both the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and the Constitution in 1783. Such was the prominence and prestige of the Hoars, their children and their grandchildren that they were known during the greater part of the 19th century as the Royal Family of Concord. One of the Hoar sons, Samuel, died in infancy. All five of their other children, Elizabeth Sherman, Ebenezer Rockwood, Sarah Sherman Storer, Edward Sherman and George Frisbie, lived to maturity. Two were widely known. Another was important within Transcendentalist circles.

Samuel and Sarah's was a deeply religious household. The family always attended Sabbath services at the First Parish Church (Unitarian). All of the household, including the hired man and maids, took part in family devotions every morning. Mrs. Hoar read a chapter from the Bible to those seated around her in the dining room. All knelt as Samuel led them in prayer. Upon his death, Thomas Starr King said of Samuel, "Mr. Hoar lived all the beatitudes daily."

Squire Hoar, as Samuel early came to be called, was a graduate of Harvard College and, active in promoting education, helped establish the Concord Academy. An eminent legal expert on laws pertaining to waterways, he represented Concord at the Massachusetts Constitutional Convention in 1820. Squire Hoar served one term in the U.S. Congress 1835-36, was appointed to the Massachusetts Governor's Council in 1845, and at age 72 was elected to the Massachusetts legislature.

In November, 1844, Elizabeth Hoar accompanied her father to Charleston, South Carolina. Judge Hoar had been commissioned by Governor George Briggs and the Massachusetts legislature to treat with the South Carolina government. Free black sailors, ashore in South Carolina to load cotton aboard Massachusetts ships for transport to Massachusetts mills, were apt to be impounded and, unless their ship's captain paid a ransom, sold into slavery. South Carolina legislators did not take kindly to Northern "meddling" with their State laws. When they learned of Hoar's mission, he was told to get out of town. A mob threatened to drag him from his hotel. Friendly residents with Harvard connections, among them the Rev. Samuel Gilman, minister of the Unitarian Church, and Dr. Joshua Barker Whitridge persuaded him to leave without further attempt to address the authorities. Elizabeth and her father were got secretly out of the hotel and onto a ship. On December 27 Squire Hoar reported the story to a Concord Town Meeting.

Concord people were incensed at the South Carolinians' rudeness to their most respected citizen and his daughter. Roughly to threaten an emissary from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and summarily to dismiss an issue of law was outrageous behavior. Moreover, subjection of Massachusetts ships to a shortage of hands was a serious economic matter. The episode had far-reaching effects throughout Massachusetts. Many who had seen no good in "abolitionist agitation" and those who had been reluctant to countenance the anti-slavery cause, changed their minds.

The effects of the incident on Judge Hoar and his lawyer sons, George Frisbie Hoar and Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar were to be seen in their subsequent political activities in opposition to the Slave Power. Rockwood was leader of the Mugwumps during his term in the Massachusetts State Senate 1846-48. In the course of a heated debate on the proposed annexation of Texas as a slave state, Rockwood said, "It is as much the duty of Massachusetts to pass resolutions in favor of the rights of men as in the interests of cotton." He said he himself would rather be a "Conscience Whig" than a "Cotton Whig." Having first been a Federalist, then a Whig, Squire Hoar in 1848 chaired a Free Soil Convention in Worcester, Massachusetts in which Rockwood took a prominent role. The Free Soilers opposed the extension of slavery to new states. [1]


__________________________________ Samuel Hoar (May 18, 1778 – November 2, 1856) was a United States lawyer and politician. A member of a prominent political family in Massachusetts, he was a leading 19th century lawyer of that state. He was associated with the Federalist Party until its decline after the war of 1812. Over his career, a prominent Massachusetts anti-slavery politician and spokesperson. He became a leading member of the Massachusetts Whig Party, a leading and founding member of the Massachusetts Free Soil Party, and a founding member and chair of the committee that organized the founding convention for the Massachusetts Republican Party in 1854.

Hoar may be best known in American history for his 1844 trip to Charleston, South Carolina as an appointed Commissioner of the state of Massachusetts. He went to South Carolina to investigate and contest the laws of that state, which allowed the seizure of sailors who were free African Americans (often who were citizens of Massachusetts) and placed into bondage, if such sailors disembarked from their ship. Hoar was prevented from undertaking his appointed tasks by resolutions of the legislature and efforts of the governor of South Carolina, and was escorted back onto a ship by Charleston citizens fearing mob violence against the agent from Massachusetts. News of the thwarting of Hoar inspired anti-slavery political reaction in Massachusetts.

Hoar was a born in the town of Lincoln, Massachusetts, and as an adult lived in neighboring Concord, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard College in 1802, and was admitted to the bar in 1805. In the fall of 1813, he married Sarah Sherman (1785–1862) of New Haven, Connecticut. Sarah was the youngest child of Roger Sherman and his second wife, Rebecca Minot Prescott. Roger Sherman was a signer of United States Declaration of Independence and Constitution.


   * 1 Political and legal career
         o 1.1 Massachusetts commissioner to South Carolina, 1844
         o 1.2 Free Soil Party
         o 1.3 Republican Party
   * 2 Leading citizen of Concord
   * 3 Hoar family
   * 4 Other Hoar family members named Samuel Hoar
   * 5 See also
   * 6 Notes
   * 7 References
   * 8 External links

Political and legal career

Hoar was delegate to the Massachusetts constitutional convention in 1820. Hoar served in the State senate in 1826, 1832, and 1833. Elected as an Anti-Jacksonian candidate to the Twenty-fourth Congress (March 4, 1835-March 3, 1837), he was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1836 to the Twenty-fifth Congress.[1] He was a Massachusetts delegate to the 1839 Whig national party convention.[2] Hoar was an expert on the laws pertaining to waterways, canals and maritime commerce.[3]

Massachusetts commissioner to South Carolina, 1844

There was an ongoing constitutional and legal conflict between the state of Massachusetts and the states of South Carolina and Louisiana regarding the seizure of Massachusetts citizens. South Carolina had enacted laws prohibiting the emancipation of slaves, or the entry into the state of free African Americans. South Carolina agents would arrest free African American seamen from Massachusetts, members of the crew aboard ships that arrived at South Carolina sea ports; if the arrestee or the captain of the ship failed to pay fines for the criminal entry into the state, the arrestee would be sold into slavery to pay the fines.

In 1844 the Massachusetts legislature authorized the governor to appoint a Commissioner to reside in Charleston, South Carolina and New Orleans, Louisiana, to collect information as to the number from Massachusetts citizens unlawfully seized in those cities, and to prosecute some of the suits before higher courts for the purpose of testing the constitutionality of the laws under which the forcible seizures were being made. In 1844, Massachusetts governor George N. Briggs (Whig party) appointed Hoar commissioner to South Carolina.[4]

Upon receipt of the letter from Massachusetts Governor Briggs announcing Hoar's appointment, South Carolina Governor James H. Hammond promptly placed it before the South Carolina legislature, which issued several resolves, declaring the right of South Carolina to exclude its borders all persons whose presence might be considered dangerous; denying that free Negroes were citizens of the United States, and for the Massachusetts commissioner:[4]

   That his excellency, the governor, be directed to expel from our territory the said agent, after due notice to depart; and that the legislature will sustain the executive authority in any measures that may be adopted for the purpose aforesaid.

The effective result was that Hoar was prevented from appearing before that state's courts to test the law. On his arrival, with daughter Elizabeth Sherman Hoar, in Charleston, December 1844, local citizens warned Hoar to leave town. Local leading citizens secretly escorted the Hoars out of their hotel, to a ship, in advance of feared mob violence.[3] When news of this incident reached Massachusetts it aroused much ire, contributing to a developing sentiment in Massachusetts against slavery and in favor of abolitionism.[1][5]

Hoar in his report as Massachusetts commissioner stated:[4]

   Has the Constitution of the United States the least practical validity or binding force in South Carolina?
   She prohibits, not only by lower mobs, but by her legislature, the residence of a free white citizen of Massachusetts within the limits of South Carolina whenever she thinks his presence there inconsistent with her policy. Are the other States of the Union to be regarded as the conquered provinces of South Carolina?

Free Soil Party

Hoar was elected to the Massachusetts Governor's Council in 1845. In 1848 Hoar chaired the Massachusetts Free Soil Party Convention in Worcester, and was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1850, at the age of 72.[3]

Republican Party

In 1854, he chaired a committee which issued an announcement, summoning leading anti-slavery politicians and citizens to a meeting at the American House in Boston (July 7, 1854), to discuss the potential formation of a new party and to organize a state convention. Anger over the Kansas-Nebraska Act, and the issue of slavery in Federal territories were motivating factors leading to the subsequent convention in Worcester. The mass convention of 2,500 people, held in open air on the common in Worcester, September 7, 1854, founded the Massachusetts Republican Party, principally from members of the Massachusetts Free Soil Party, with a few Whig Party, and anti-slavery Democrats.[6] The Massachusetts Free Soil Party in its Springfield convention, on October 17, 1854 voted to adopt the Republican candidates, and to merge into the new Republican organization.[7]

In 1855, at the age of 77, Hoar was appointed chair of a Massachusetts Republican committee to organize mass assemblage or convention, to consider and promote actions might be taken by Massachusetts citizens against the pro-slavery violence in the recent Kansas elections (subsequently known as Bleeding Kansas), with the intent of unifying with all anti-slavery citizens of Massachusetts in national anti-slavery efforts[8] [edit] Leading citizen of Concord

Hoar was a co-founder of the first Concord Academy, which had a 41-year existence (1822–1863).[9]

Hoar family

Samuel Hoar had five surviving children (of six offspring); several led influential or prominent lives.

   * Elizabeth Sherman Hoar (July 14, 1814-April 7, 1878) was engaged to Charles Chauncy Emerson (1808–1836), youngest brother of Ralph Waldo Emerson and young law partner of Samuel Hoar; Charles died of tuberculosis before they could marry, and she never married. She was an intimate of the Emerson, Hawthorne and Thoreau families.[10] R.W. Emerson invited Elizabeth into the Transcendentalist community, and she aided in producing their journal, The Dial.[3]
   * Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar (1816–1895) (Harvard class of 1835) was Associate Justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court, and US Attorney General for President Ulysses Grant; later nominated to the U.S. Supreme Court by Grant, but the nomination was not approved by the Senate; he married Caroline Brooks of Concord.
   * Sarah Sherman Hoar (1817–1907) married Robert Boyd Storer (1796–1870), a Boston, Massachusetts importer trading with Russia, and Russian Consul at Boston.[11][12][13]
   * Samuel Johnson Hoar (February 4, 1820 - Jan 10, 1821) died in infancy.[11][14]
   * Edward Sherman Hoar (1823–1892), (Harvard class of 1844), married childhood neighbor Elizabeth Hallet Prichard of Concord,[15] and was an intimate of Henry David Thoreau (the Thoreau family lived across Main street from the Hoars, in several different houses over the years). Edward with H.D. Thoreau accidentally allowed a cooking fire to get out of control, and caused more than a 100 acres (400,000 m2) of forest to burn on April 30, 1844, along the Sudbury River in the Fairhaven Bay section of Concord. Edward accompanied Thoreau on some of Thoreau's hiking and canoeing excursions.[16][17][18][19] Edward Sherman was a California state district attorney for the fourth Judicial district in 1850. He returned to Massachusetts in 1857.[20]
   * George Frisbie Hoar (1826–1904) (Harvard class of 1845) moved to Worcester, Massachusetts as a young adult, and became a prominent U.S. Senator representing Massachusetts for 27 years, from 1877 until his death.

Other Hoar family members named Samuel Hoar

The Hoar family, a prominent political family in Massachusetts, has had number of individuals named Samuel Hoar since the 18th century:

   * His father, Samuel Hoar (1743-1832), was a lieutenant of the Lincoln, Massachusetts company at the Concord battle on April 19, 1775. For many years a member of the Massachusetts General Court as a representative and senator, and a member in the 1820 - 1821 Massachusetts Constitutional Convention.[citation needed]
   * Son, Samuel Johnson Hoar (February 4, 1820 - Jan 10, 1821) died in infancy[11][14]
         o Samuel Hoar (1845-1904), son of Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar, was editor of the American Law Review from 1873 to 1879. In 1887 he became general counsel for the Boston and Albany Railroad Company.[21]
               + His son, Samuel Hoar (1887-1952), was partner in a prominent Boston law firm, called during his lifetime Goodwin, Procter and Hoar. The firm was founded in 1914, and Hoar's name was added in 1917 when Hoar joined the firm.[22] In the 1940s he donated a several parcels of land to the Federal Government, which became the founding kernel of the Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge on the Concord and Sudbury rivers in Massachusetts. He co-founded a second and still operating Concord Academy in 1922 in Concord, Massachusetts.[citation needed]
                     # His son, Samuel Hoar (1927 - 2004), of Essex, Massachusetts also was a senior partner in the firm formerly known as Goodwin, Procter and Hoar.[22][23] As board member of the Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), he was a leading member of the litigation team that compelled the Commonwealth of Massachusetts to comply with federal environmental law, and build appropriate facilities to properly treat sewage discharged into Boston harbor, a legal battle that was most intense from 1983 into the 1990s.[24]
                           * His son, Samuel Hoar (b. 1955) is a lawyer practicing in Burlington, Vermont. He served as president of the Vermont Bar Association in 2006 and 2007.[25]
                                 o His son Samuel Rockwood Hoar (b. 1988) is a student at Middlebury College. [26]

See also

   * Baldwin, Hoar & Sherman family


  1. ^ a b HOAR, Samuel, (1778 - 1856) Biographical Directory of the United States Congress: 1774 - Present. Retrieved January 20, 2004.
  2. ^ Hoar family of Massachusetts Political Graveyard. Retrieved October 14, 2007.
  3. ^ a b c d Robbins, Paula The Hoar Family Dictionary of Unitarian & Universalist Biography. Unitarian Universalist Historical Society. Retrieved January 30, 2007.
  4. ^ a b c Flower, Frank A. (1884). History of the Republican Party, Embracing its Origin Growth and Mission: Together with Appendices of Statistics and Information required by Enlightened Politicions and Patriotic Citizens. Grand Rapids, Michigan, U.S.A.: Union Book Company. pp. 65–69. http://books.google.com/?id=VmkFAAAAQAAJ&printsec=titlepage. 
  5. ^ Governors of Massachusetts: George Nixon Briggs (1796-1861): Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts 1844-1851 Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Retrieved January 20, 2007.
  6. ^ Wilson, Leslie Perrin. Papers of the Legendary Hoar Family Concord Magazine, August/September 1999; retrieved December 1, 2006.
  7. ^ "Massachusetts Free-Soil State Convention". New York Times. October 18, 1854. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9507E3DD1238EE3BBC4052DFB667838F649FDE. Retrieved 2007-10-14. 
  8. ^ "Meeting in Boston to Commit Upon a Republican Movement". New York Times: 6. August 18, 1855. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9F03E6DD1631E334BC4052DFBE66838E649FDE. Retrieved 2008-05-04. 
  9. ^ This first Concord Academy is unrelated to a second Concord Academy, which was co-founded by his grandson Samuel Hoar (1887-1952) in 1922. The co-founders of the first Concord Academy were these leading citizens of Concord: Samuel Hoar (1778-1856), Josiah G. Davis (1773-1847), William Whiting (1788-1847), Nathan Brooks (1788-1862) and Abiel Heywood (1759-1839).
 10. ^ Emerson in His Family: Charles Chauncy Emerson, Concord Free Public Library, Concord, Massachusetts. Retrieved December 20, 2006.
 11. ^ a b c Edson, Roz. [1] Hoar Genealogy (Rootsweb)
 12. ^ "Horatio Robinson Storer Papers, 1829-1943: Guide to the Collection". Library: Finding Aids. Massachusetts Historical Society. June 2001, Revised 22 March 2005. http://www.masshist.org/findingaids/doc.cfm?fa=fa0001. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
 13. ^ "Mrs. Sarah Sherman Storer". New York Times: pp. 7. July 25, 1907. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/abstract.html?res=9F06E5D6133EE033A25756C2A9619C946697D6CF. Retrieved 2008-05-05. 
 14. ^ a b Hoar Family Papers, 1738-1958 (Bulk 1815-1935) The Special Collections (Finding Aid). Concord Free Public Library. Retrieved January 30, 2007.
 15. ^ Dall, Caroline Healey; ed by Deese, Helen R. Carol Healy Dall speaks in Concord, 1859 (See footnote 161 at bottom of page.) Daughter of Boston: The Extraordinary Diary of a Nineteenth-century Woman Beacon Press, Boston. 2004. ISBN 978-080705034-7
 16. ^ Henry David Thoreau; (edited by Robert Sattelmeyer, Mark R. Patterson, and William Rossi) Journal 3: 1848-1851 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1990. 75-78 and Annotation 75.16-78.19.
 17. ^ Harding, Walter. The Days of Henry Thoreau, (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1970), 159-162.
 18. ^ The Writings of Henry David Thoreau: frequently asked questions. (Did Thoreau really start a major forest fire accidentally, and how old was he at that time?) The Thoreau Edition, Davidson Library at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Retrieved January 20, 2007.
 19. ^ Felton, R. Todd. An Early Naturalist Burns Down a Forest Concord Magazine, Autumn 2006. Excerpt from Felton: A Journey Into the Transcendentalists' New England. (Roaring Forties Press, 2006)
 20. ^ Wheelright, Edward. (1896) "Edward Sherman Hoar." Harvard Class of 1844: Harvard College, 50 Years after Graduation Harvard College. (Cambridge Massachusetts)
 21. ^ "Obituary: Samuel Hoar '67.". Harvard Crimson (Harvard Crimson, Inc.). April 12, 1904. 
 22. ^ a b Memorial service held for former Goodwin Procter partner Boston Business Journal. September 27, 2004. Retrieved January 14, 2007.
 23. ^ In memoriam. Obituary of Samuel Hoar (1927 - 2004). Harvard Law School. Retrieved January 20, 2007.
 24. ^ Early History of CLF's Fight to Cleanup Boston Harbor 1983-1986 Conservation Law Foundation. Retrieved January 20, 2007. See section entitled "Spring/Summer 1983." This source has a comprehensive time line of the civil court case and resulting governmental and facilities changes that came about because of it.
 25. ^ Paolini, Bob. An Interview with VBA President Sam Hoar Vermont Bar Journal No. 167, (Fall 2006) Volume 32, No. 3. Vermont Bar Association. Retrieved January 14, 2007.]
 26. ^ https://web.middlebury.edu/database/directory/?cn=H#D662E511EF26C802651EEA896C01518B


   * Samuel Hoar at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress "HOAR, Samuel, (1778 - 1856)"
   * The Hoar Family on Dictionary of Unitarian & Universalist Biography
   * Samuel Hoar's Expulsion from Charleston, Old South Leaflets, Volume vi No. 140.
   * Hoar, George Frisbie. Memorial Biographies of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, Volume III. (Boston, 1883) (A memoir of Samuel Hoar)
   * Emerson, Ralph Waldo. Lectures and Biographical Sketches (Boston, 1903) (On Samuel Hoar)
   * Robbins, Paula Ivaska. The Royal Family of Concord : Samuel, Elizabeth, and Rockwood Hoar and their friendship with Ralph Waldo Emerson ISBN 140109970X. Pub. Xlibris. Philadelphia PA, 2003.

External links Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article Hoar, Samuel.

   * HOAR FAMILY PAPERS, 1738-1958 (BULK 1815-1935), and HOAR FAMILY PAPERS, 1774-1940 (BULK 1860-1918) at the Concord Free Public Library, Concord, Massachusetts
   * Sherman Genealogy Including Families of Essex, Suffolk and Norfolk, England By Thomas Townsend Sherman
   * Hoar-Baldwin-Foster-Sherman family of Massachusetts at Political Graveyard
   * Samuel Hoar Works of Ralph Waldo Emerson

Source: Downloaded 2011 from Wikipedia.


The Hoars of Concord and Lincoln descended from John Hoare of Gloucester, England, and his wife Joanna Hincksman Hoare. John Hoare died in 1638. About 1640, Joanna came to New England with five of their children. Their son John settled in Scituate, sold his land there in 1659, and came to Concord. He exchanged the land he first owned (near what is now MCI Concord) for land on the Bay Road (now Lexington Road), on the present Orchard House site. He housed the "Christian Indians" in Concord during King Philip's War, and succeeded in ransoming Mary Rowlandson (wife of the minister of Lancaster, Massachusetts), who was held captive by the Native Americans after the attack on Lancaster in February, 1675/6.

Samuel Hoar, the great-great-grandson of the first John Hoare in Concord and the father of Squire Sam, was born in 1743, in what would become Lincoln in 1754. He served as a lieutenant of the Lincoln company at the Concord Fight on April 19, 1775. He was later a Massachusetts representative and senator. Like his father (John), grandfather (Daniel), and great-grandfather (Daniel), he was a farmer.

During the nineteenth century, the Hoar family was tremendously influential not only in Concord life and politics, but in state and national government as well. Squire Sam Hoar (1778-1856), born in Lincoln, was one of the great 19th century lawyers of Massachusetts, a man of principle, integrity, directness, and wide-ranging legal expertise. He graduated from Harvard College in 1802, studied law with Artemas Ward in Charlestown, Mass., was admitted to the bar in 1803, and practiced law in Concord from 1805. He was a powerful presence in the bar of Middlesex County.

Samuel Hoar married Sarah Sherman, daughter of Roger Sherman of Connecticut, in 1812. With their six children, they made their home on Main Street, in what is now #158.

Politically, he was a Federalist, later a Whig, and a founder of the Free Soil Party. He served as a delegate to the Massachusetts constitutional convention of 1820, and several times as a member of the state senate. From 1835 to 1837, he represented the Middlesex District in the 24th Congress of the United States. During his tenure in Washington, he upheld the power of Congress to abolish slavery in the District of Columbia.

In 1844, accompanied by his daughter Elizabeth (earlier engaged to marry Ralph Waldo Emerson's brother Charles, who had died in 1836), he went to South Carolina to test the constitutionality of that state's law, under which free black Massachusetts sailors were seized, imprisoned, and sometimes sold into slavery. Threatened with mob violence, he was forced to leave South Carolina.

In 1845, Hoar was elected to the Massachusetts Governor's Council. He became a state representative in 1850. In 1854, he chaired a committee appointed to call a meeting at the American House in Boston (July 7, 1854) in order to form a new party and to call a state convention. Precipitated by anger over the Kansas-Nebraska bill, this convention (held in Worcester September 7, 1854) resulted in the formation of the Republican Party of Massachusetts out of the Free Soil Party.

Sam Hoar was active in Concord town and church government and as an advocate of temperance and education. He served many times as moderator of town meeting. He was an overseer of Harvard College and a member of the Social Circle in Concord.

Two of Samuel Hoar's sons, Ebenezer Rockwood (right) and George Frisbie, also had distinguished public careers.

The Squire Samuel Hoar papers presented to the Concord Free Public Library in March include letters (among Hoar's correspondents Ralph Waldo Emerson's brother William Emerson, Andrew Jackson, Theodore Lyman, Josiah Quincy, Lemuel Shaw, and Daniel Webster), responses to the 1854 circular sent by the committee chaired by Hoar to organize the American House meeting that proved to be so significant in the history of the Massachusetts Republican Party, and manuscript items (for example, a Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court docket for the October, 1816 term). The Sarah Sherman Hoar papers include correspondence and financial papers.

Like his father, Judge Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar (1816-1895) was a lawyer, a key member of the Middlesex Bar, and a public servant at the local, state, and national levels. A cultivated and sociable man with a good sense of humor, he was as comfortable among members of the Saturday Club as he was in a court of law.

He graduated from Harvard College in 1835, began the study of law in his father's office, and graduated from Harvard Law School in 1839. In 1840, he married Caroline Downes Brooks, daughter of Lincoln-born Concord lawyer Nathan Brooks and his first wife Caroline Downes Brooks. (Mrs. Hoar's half-brother was George Merrick Brooks, a lawyer and probate judge.) In 1845, Hoar built an impressive Greek Revival house on Main Street (now #194), near his parents' home. E.R. and Caroline Hoar had seven children.

E.R. Hoar was a Whig, a Free Soiler, and a Republican. He was a judge of the Court of Common Pleas from 1849 to 1855, a justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court from 1859 to 1869, United States Attorney General in the cabinet of Ulysses S. Grant (below, second from left on April 19, 1875 in front of 194 Main Street) from 1869 to 1870, and a representative in the United States Congress from 1873 to 1875.

He was a proponent of abolition. In 1859, when United States Marshal's deputies attempted to arrest F.B. Sanborn for his involvement in John Brown's raid on the United States arsenal at Harper's Ferry, West Virginia, E.R. Hoar issued the writ of habeas corpus that prevented them from doing so.

In 1871, Hoar agreed to serve on a joint commission to frame a treaty to settle the Alabama claims against Great Britain for damage done during the Civil War by Confederate warships built in Liverpool. Secretary of State Hamilton Fish negotiated the Treaty of Washington.

E.R. Hoar was a member of the famed Saturday Club and of its offshoot the Adirondack Club, an overseer and member of the corporation of Harvard College, a member of the Social Circle in Concord and of Concord's School Committee, chairman of the Concord Town Library Committee and president of the Concord Free Public Library Corporation (1873-1894), and was active in the American Unitarian Association. He was a member of the Committee on General Invitations for the 1875 celebration in Concord of the centennial of the Concord Fight. In 1894 (the year in which Patriots' Day was made a Massachusetts holiday), Hoar delivered the April 19th address at the First Parish in Concord.

The papers of Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar represent the most extensive and significant part of Mrs. Frecha's gift to the Library. They include some two hundred letters to Hoar, reflecting his friendships, political associations, and family relationships. Among his many distinguished correspondents: Charles Francis Adams; Louis Agassiz; John A. Andrew; George Bancroft; James G. Blaine; Phillips Brooks; Thomas Carlyle; James Freeman Clarke; George William Curtis; Ralph Waldo Emerson; William M. Evarts; Edward Everett; Hamilton Fish; John Murray Forbes; Frederick T. Frelinghuysen; Daniel Chester French; James A. Garfield; Ulysses S. Grant; Edward Everett Hale; Hannibal Hamlin; Nathaniel Hawthorne; Rutherford B. Hayes; Thomas Wentworth Higginson; Oliver Wendell Holmes; Andrew Johnson; John Lothrop Motley; Charles Eliot Norton; Charles W. Palfray; William T. Sherman; William Wetmore Story; Charles Sumner; Booker T. Washington; John G. Whittier.

The Concord Free Public Library has long had the records of the Committee of Arrangements for the 1875 celebration in Concord of the centennial of the Concord Fight. These records include many responses to the formal invitations sent out by the Committee on General Invitations. E.R. Hoar clearly kept some of the responses (including those from Samuel L. Clemens, Frederick Douglass, Daniel Chester French, William Lloyd Garrison, and Oliver Wendell Holmes) with his personal papers rather than incorporating them into the records of the celebration. They have now come into the Library as part of this amazing collection.

There are also a number of manuscripts in the E.R. Hoar papers, among them a charming biography of her brother by Elizabeth Hoar, lamenting the deterioration of young Rockwood's character.

Following in the family tradition, Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar's son Samuel (1845-1904) and grandson Samuel (1887-1952) were also lawyers, both deeply involved in the municipal affairs of Concord and in town life. Among their papers in the recent gift, there is a remarkable sequence of his son Sam's Civil War letters home. In 1862, eager to serve, Sam enlisted without parental consent in a Maine regiment, in Portland. E.R. Hoar had him transferred to Company E of the 48th Regiment of the Massachusetts Volunteer Militia, which left Massachusetts for New York on December 27, 1862, moved on to New Orleans, and, after several months of camp duty in Baton Rouge, was involved in the attack on Port Hudson. Port Hudson was surrendered July 8, 1863. Sam's papers include over forty detailed letters home, recording his military experiences and his observations on the local landscape and people--a valuable resource for historians of the Civil War.

Sam's son Sam (Mrs. Frecha's father) was an avid outdoorsman. In 1944, he donated to the federal government multiple parcels of meadowland on the Concord River, which became the nucleus of the Great Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. As a hunter and an observer of wildlife, he loved Concord's Great Meadows. He had devoted considerable thought and energy to enhancing the meadows as a resting place for migrating birds, and over the years had bought up parcels from individual owners. His gift to the government was later supplemented by subsequent acquisitions, extending the refuge beyond Concord into Bedford, Billerica, Carlisle, Lincoln, Sudbury, and Wayland.

Having donated the Great Meadows for the benefit and enjoyment of all, the great-grandson of Squire Hoar moved to Stow, where his daughter Virginia now lives. Another daughter, Cynthia Hoar Fisk, died in 1991. His son lawyer Samuel Hoar lives on the North Shore.

For close to three hundred years, the Hoars helped to shape Concord's history. Their legacy to the town lives on in this gift of family papers to the Concord Free Public Library. A curator's delight and the essential raw material of scholarship, the collection is now fully processed and ready for researchers to use.

Text: ©1999 Leslie Perrin Wilson.

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Hon. Samuel Hoar, Jr.'s Timeline

May 18, 1778
Lincoln, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
July 14, 1814
Age 36
Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
February 21, 1816
Age 37
Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA
November 9, 1817
Age 39
Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
February 4, 1820
Age 41
Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
February 21, 1823
Age 44
Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
August 29, 1826
Age 48
Concord, Middlesex, Massachusetts, USA
November 2, 1856
Age 78
Concord, Middlesex Co., Massachusetts
Concord, Middlesex County, Massachusetts, United States