This week’s Vice-President is: Henry Wilson!
Born: February 16, 1812
Died: November 22, 1875
Vice-President #: 18
Under: Ulysses S. Grant
Dates: March 4, 1873 – November 22, 1875
Fun Facts: Wilson was born Jeremiah Jones Colbath but had his name legally changed at the age of 21 (he was adopted by the Wilson family at a young age when the Colbath family could no longer support 12 children). Allegedly, remembering his father’s drinking problem, “Jeremiah,” at the age of 19, swore he would never consume alcohol. In 1833, Wilson moved to Natick, Massachusetts and worked as a shoemaker (his Senate nickname was the “Natick cobbler”)
Wilson was implicated in the Credit Mobilier scandal but not as badly as Schuyler Colfax, who Wilson replaced in Grant’s second-term. In 1873, Wilson suffered a stroke and became paralyzed. Bed ridden, he wrote the three-volume, “History of the Rise and Fall of the Slave Power in America in 1877.” In 1875, Wilson died in his office in the Capitol Building. The office remained vacant for the last two years of Grant’s term.