Question of the Week: Do you have any politicians in your branches?

+22 votes

In the US, we celebrate Presidents Day (a.k.a. Washington's Birthday) this week. We thought it would be interesting to hear if any of you have found any politicians in your family branches. Tell us about them!

asked in The Tree House by Julie Ricketts G2G6 Pilot (254k points)
retagged by Abby Glann
Hello Karen,
    That's quite interesting! During President Richard Nixon's years, his Postmaster General, was my cousin, Wynton (Winton)Malcolm Blount,,Jr. We also descend from Parkers!

My 3rd Great Grandfather, William Murray (Democrat) between 1851 - 1855 was elected to the 32nd and 33rd Congresses, representing New York's 9th and 10th Districts in the United States House of Representatives.

His brother, my 4th Great Uncle, Ambrose Spencer Murray between 1855 - 1859 was elected as an Opposition Party Candidate to the 34th Congress and reelected as a Republican to the 35 Congress. Then in 1860, he became delegate to the Republican National Convention. 

California Senator John L. Avey  my great grandfather. He was also a Doctor.  He was in World War 1 and 2
James Knox Polk, 11th President of the United State, is my 4th cousin 4X Removed.
Hannible hamlin
Richard  Nixon is my 8th cousin, also through the Inskeep connection.
My mother-in-law ran for School Board. Not sure if that counts...
Through my grandmother Eilean Lalor, I am related to Peter Lalor, first speaker of the parliament of New South Wales and a leader of the Eureka Stockade rebellion.

He is my 4th great uncle.

His brother Peter who went on to become a British MP is my five times Great Grandfather.
Scott Fulkerson,

Any politician counts. Thanks for her service.
Salmon Portland Chase, Governor of Ohio, Secretary of the Treasury, Supreme Court Justice.  


67 Answers

+9 votes
Best answer
The closest I have to a politician is my dad was elected cemetery commissioner a couple of times. My wife's side has a number of which her great grandfather J P Maxwell (Boulder, Colorado) was at various times a sheriff, State Senator, mayor of Boulder, State Engineer. Her lines aren't on WikiTree yet.
answered by Doug McCallum G2G6 Pilot (214k points)
selected by Martyn Mulford
+10 votes
My great grandfather's brother (Peter Triesch) was elected to the Idaho state legislature in 1900.
answered by Bart Triesch G2G6 Pilot (190k points)
+11 votes

From my mother's surname, William Fleming, Fleming-1934 was a politician.

In 1776 William was made Botetourt (now Montgomery) County Lieutenant by the Committee of Safety. He became a senator from the district of Botetourt, Montgomery and Kentucky when the Virginia state government was formed, and later became a member of the council. Fleming then served as the 3rd governor of Virginia in 1781.

Then myself and the 27th President of the United States (1901-1913) William Taft are 16th cousins three times removed!!

answered by Dorothy Barry G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)
edited by Dorothy Barry
+9 votes

On my side I have 2  Governors of Maine, Harris Merrill Plaisted

 and his son, Frederick William Plaisted

On my wife's side Percival Proctor Baxter

and still looking for more :)

answered by Kevin Conroy G2G6 Mach 2 (26.8k points)
+10 votes

My 3rd great-grandfather John Hansen Aas was mayor of Eiker municipality in Buskerud, Norway in the 1850s, and a great-grandson of my 7th great grandfather Borger Hansen Loe in the same line was a representative to the Norwegian Constitutional Convention in 1814. And his son again was a member of the Norwegian Storting (parliament).

At some point I'll get around to researching all those cousins, but that time is not now. There are a lot of secondary sources listing them all, but adding primary sources and checking for errors will take ages.

answered by Bjørnar Tuftin G2G6 (9.2k points)
+8 votes

I added a profile for José Guadalupe Zuno Hernández:

He was governor of the Mexican state of Jalisco:

He was the father of Esther Zuno Arce, she was the wife of Mexican president Luis Echeverría Alvarez currently the oldest living former president of México:

Esther was born in Guadalajara, Jalisco, México on Dec 8 1924, his father was the acting governor of the state at that time. Her birth was registered on Dec 10 1924:

This record is very unique. Two of the witnesses were:

("Fueron testigos de este acto los señores ...")

Alvaro Obregón. President of México up to Nov 30 1924 (Acting president only a fortnight before).

Lázaro Cárdenas. President of México Dec 1 1934 - Nov 30 1940.

I hope you liked a little of Mexican History.

answered by Rubén Hernández G2G6 Pilot (368k points)
A little Mexican History is excellent.  A lot would be even better.  Many Americans are very parochial and don't see beyond the borders.  I like to think I'm not so parochial as I did leave the country and now reside in Australia. You see things differently from outside your country.  Thinks are reported differently.
+10 votes
John Herschel Glenn, Jr., astronaut and U. S. Senator from Ohio, is my 3rd cousin once removed.  I knew about it from newspaper clippings a cousin would send to my parents in 1962, and told I my second-grade class about it, and of course was not believed.

John Dennis Spellman, the last Republican governor of Washington State, who died this past January, is my 4th cousin once removed.  I knew about it because he signed the guest book at the Linn County Historical Museum in Brownsville, OR, and I followed up on it, not knowing he had been governor.  We had an email correspondence about family and genealogy in 1999 and he was very cordial and helpful.
answered by Margaret Summitt G2G6 Mach 1 (16.1k points)
+9 votes

I have many politicians, too many to mention.  Most notable is our 11th President, James Knox Polk who is my 2nd cousin through my maternal McGill/Knox line. I have many Governors from Maryland, such as Charles Carnan Ridgely.

answered by James Stratman G2G6 Mach 5 (59k points)
edited by James Stratman
I too am a descendant of James Polk via his daughter.  At least I was until someone checked the "family tradition" and learned he had no children.

Lesson learned:  Read it for yourself. :)  Love Genealogy.
It's good to know those details. LOL  I relate to President Polk through his great-grandparents.
+8 votes

Louis McHenry Howe (a distant cousin) was a principal political advisor and Chief of Staff for Franklin Delano Roosevelt. He was played by Hume Cronyn in Sunrise at Campobello.

answered by Walter Howe G2G6 Mach 1 (10.4k points)
edited by Walter Howe
+8 votes
I've come across several mayors or other local politicians. According to Wikitree, I'm a 4th cousin 6x removed to President Van Buren. Then there's George Terwilliger III, who was Deputy Attorney General and Acting Attorney General a couple times under both Bushes. No clue about what my relationship to him is, but I'd guess at least a distant 6th cousin.
answered by Alexander Terwilliger G2G1 (1k points)
+7 votes
I run across members of Congress pretty often, and the occasional Senator or Governor or state rep or mayor. Especially while I was working on people with counties named after them. Amongst the early colonial New Englanders, almost everyone (almost all the men anyhow) had some kind of office or other.
answered by Elizabeth Winter G2G6 Mach 6 (62.1k points)
+7 votes

A number of medieval Members of Parliament

·  John Battiscombe abt 1400 Dorset, England – 1475

·  Philip (FitzWarin) FitzWarin of Penleigh before 1340 Bratton, Wiltshire, England – 1384

·  William (FitzWarin) FitzWarin of Penleigh before 1310 Bratton, Westbury, Wiltshire, England - aft 1364

·  Henry Percy before 1320 Great Chalfield, Wiltshire, England – 1357

·  Henry (Riviere) de la Riviere Gloucestershire, England - abt 1404

·  John (Rous) Rous of Baynton MP before 1395 Imber, Wiltshire, England - abt 1451

BATTISCOMBE, Peter (d. 1725), of Symondsbury, Dorset

answered by Janet Gunn G2G6 Mach 5 (57.6k points)
+6 votes
Good, bad, otherwise, I find that the current Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, is one of my fifth cousins.
answered by Peter Jones G2G6 Mach 1 (10.8k points)
+6 votes

Thomas Prence Jr, the 4th Governor of Plymouth Colony (
1634 —1635) is my 9th Great Grandfather. I am also related to 38 US Presidents, the closest being John Calvin Coolidge Jr who is my 4th cousin once removed.

answered by Ken Parman G2G6 Mach 2 (23.5k points)

I am related to 37 Presidents, with Theodore Roosevelt Jr and William Henry Harrison being nearest at 7th cousins. Most of the relationships are 12th through 16th cousins. I made a table of the president, my relationship to him and the common ancestor.   I thought it was very interesting to see how many presidents were related to each other as well as to me.  An example:  John Tyler, John Quincy Adams, Harry S Truman, Gerald Rudolph (King) Ford Jr and I are all descended from Ralph (Neville) de Neville KG, PC.  All of these relationships are of unknown certainty.   At the local level my GG-Grandfather was one of the first 4 Justices of the Peace for Fayette County, Texas, when the county was formed in 1840.  There may have been 1 or 2 others but that wasn’t one of the big things I was looking for when I was building my tree.

Since you are related to Teddy Roosevelt, by default you are related to Franklin Delano Roosevelt as well. They are both 7th cousin 3x removed to me.
+6 votes

I have Charles Price MLA (2nd cousins 3x removed) and A Edison Stairs MLA as my closest politician relatives. For the rest see Space:Aaron_Gullison_-_Wikitree_Cousins .

answered by Aaron Gullison G2G6 Mach 2 (25.4k points)
Cant be added due to the restriction but evidently we are 25th cousins.
+5 votes

Several Bohemian politicians, only one with a somewhat finished profile, though: Antonín Šachl.

answered by Helmut Jungschaffer G2G6 Pilot (438k points)
+6 votes
My father's adopted mother Ruby M Rouss was the first female President of the Virgin Islands Senate. Other than her I have no other politicians in the family.

answered by Lynnette Dovy G2G6 Mach 1 (12.9k points)
+5 votes

Yes I have 3. My uncle Albert Crane was a Member for the Legislative Council in Western Australia.

His nephew Winston Crane was an Australian Federal Senator (no profile yet as he is still living. Also my brother was an MP in New Zealand. Again he is still living so no profile yet.

answered by Deborah Talbot G2G6 Mach 3 (30.1k points)
+6 votes

Let's give this a shot:

First we have Lewis Birdsall Harris, who clerked for Andrew Briscoe at Lynchburg and Harrisburg, Texas during the year 1836. In January 1837 Lewis was elected second lieutenant of militia of the second district of Harrisburg County and served as deputy and clerk pro tempore from 1831 to 1842 during his brother's administration; and after 1849 served as county clerk in Sacramento, California.

His brother, DeWitt Clinton Harris served a short time as regidor (councillor), and then County Clerk for Harrisburg, Texas from 1837 to 1841, and then along with their youngest brother, John Birdsall Harris, were elected as aldermans at the first municipal council of Harrisburg, Texas in 1842.

Andrew Briscoe, brother-in-law to the Harris boys, was a Judge who was elected a member of the convention to assemble at Washington, Texas, March 1st, 1836, and but for this circumstance would have been one of the victims of the Alamo. Arriving at Washington he affixed his name to the Declaration of Independence, which made Texas a free and independent republic.

The Harris boy's father, John Richardson Harris, the original settler of Harrisburg, Texas and one of Stephen F. Austin's Old Three Hundred, was appointed alcolade of the area, a post granted by the Mexican Government.

His wife, Jane (Birdsall) Harris, after her husband's untimely death, moved to Harrisburg, Texas to carry on her husband's legacy and her home served as the headquarters of the provisional government of Texas from March 19th to April 16th, 1836. She also traveled with President Burnett, Vice-President Zavala and others to New Washington and eventually to Anahuac, Texas as the Mexican army, led by General Santa Anna, approached.

John Richardson Harris' father, John Harris, who settled amongst the Indians at Cayuga Reservation in New York, was elected member of Congress from the district in 1806 and in the same year he was appointed Colonel of Militia.

John Harris' grandfather, John Harris Sr., who was the original settler of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania as a part of WIlliam Penn's Settlers, appended his name in 1698 to a remonstrance to the Provincial Assembly against the passage of an act disallowing the franchise to all persons owning real estate less in value than fifty pounds.

answered by Steven Harris G2G6 Pilot (115k points)
+10 votes
I certainly hope not.
answered by Linda Hartlaub G2G Crew (500 points)
I'm with you!

Related questions

WikiTree  ~  About  ~  Help Help  ~  Search Person Search  ~  Surname:

disclaimer - terms - copyright