Chester Alan Arthur

Born: 5 Oct 1830, Fairfield, VT
Died: 18 Nov 1886, New York, NY

21st President of the United States

Common Ancestor:
William Lumpkin
9th Gr Grandfather
of Merle G Ladd
6th Gr Grandfather
of Chester A Arthur
Thomasine Lumpkin Anne Lumpkin
Elizabeth Mayo Sarah Eldredge
Joseph Howes Sarah J Colby
Joseph Howes Judith Flanders
Rebecca Howes Sarah Hadley
Phebe Bangs Judith Stevens
Allen Crowell Malvina Stone
Freeman S Crowell Chester A Arthur
Graceland M Crowell  
Allen D Ladd  
Merle G Ladd  
Relationship to Merle G Ladd:
7th Cousin, 3 Times Removed
Perhaps the most unknown of the unknown, President Chester Arthur came from relative obscurity, became President by way of a heinous event, accomplished little and never had a chance to seek a second term.
Born in Fairfield, Vermont in 1830, and a lawyer noted for civil rights work on behalf of slaves, Arthur was a high ranking Union staff officer during the Civil War. Because he had been a loyal Republican, President Grant appointed him to the powerful position of collector of the Port of New York in 1871. Several years later President Rutherford B. Hayes, a fellow Republican from Ohio with renowned integrity, fired Arthur, alleging that he had used tax money to reward his political supporters. Although there was no doubt of Arthur's connections with the incredibly powerful and corrupt New York political machine of that era, Arthur's direct involvement with any illegal act could not be established. As a result, sympathy within the Republican party for what was considered unfair treatment of Arthur by Hayes contributed to Arthur receiving the Republican Vice Presidential nod to run with James Garfield in the election of 1880, which the Garfield/Arthur ticket won.
In July 1881, after only four months in office, President Garfield was mortally wounded at the Washington railroad station by gunfire from a disgruntled office seeker and died 80 days later, leaving Chester A. Arthur as President of the United States and the third President to have served as President within a 12 month period.
Specters of the tainted past greeted Arthur when he assumed office as the political pundits of the day predicted a flood of corruption and graft. However, that never occurred and Arthur ran the presidency in an honest and upright fashion. In fact, he showed great political courage by vetoing a graft-laden "rivers and harbors" bill, by breaking relations with his former New York political boss and by vigorously prosecuting fellow Republicans accused of defrauding the government. Legislatively, though, little of any consequence was achieved during his term except for the creation of the modern Civil Service system with its competitive examinations and non-political merit system. It became law because, in another display of exceptional political courage, Chester Arthur went against the will of his own party and supported it.
President Arthur could not seek a second term as President because he had been diagnosed as having kidney disease. In fact, it claimed his life within two years of leaving office; he died in New York City on November 18, 1886.