Interim Content

Benton, Thomas Hart


14 Mar. 1782–10 Apr. 1858. Teacher, lawyer, newspaper editor, politician. Born in Hart’s Mill, near Hillsborough, Orange Co., North Carolina. Son of Jesse Benton and Ann “Nancy” Gooch. Attended Chapel Hill College, in Orange Co. Moved to Nashville, Davidson Co., Tennessee, 1801. Taught school in Nashville. Admitted to bar, 1806, in Nashville. Practiced law in Franklin, Williamson Co., Tennessee. Member of state senate, 1809–1811. Served as aide-de-camp to General Andrew Jackson in War of 1812. Moved to Missouri Territory and became editor of Missouri Inquirer, 1815. Represented Missouri in U.S. Senate, 1821–1851. Married Elizabeth McDowell, on or after 20 Mar. 1821, in Rockbridge Co., Virginia. Chairman of U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, 1823–1829; Committee on Military Affairs, 1827–1841, 1845–1849; and Committee on Foreign Relations, 1847–1849. Represented Missouri in U.S. House of Representatives, 1853–1855. Chairman of Committee on Military Affairs, 1853–1855. Died in Washington DC. Buried in St. Louis.