Horace Greeley (February 3, 1811 – November 29, 1872) was an American newspaper editor, a founder of the Liberal Republican Party, a reformer, a politician, and an outspoken opponent of slavery. The New York Tribune (which he founded and edited) was the most influential U.S. newspaper from the 1840s to the 1870s and "established Greeley's reputation as the greatest editor of his day." Greeley used it to promote the Whig and Republican parties, as well as opposition to slavery and in favor of a host of reforms ranging from vegetarianism to socialism.
Crusading against the corruption of Ulysses S. Grant's Republican administration, he was the new Liberal Republican Party's candidate in the 1872 U.S. presidential election. Despite having the additional support of the Democratic Party, he lost in a landslide. He is the only presidential candidate to have died prior to the counting of electoral votes.
Early Life Edit
Greeley was born on February 3, 1811, in Amherst, New Hampshire, the son of poor farmers Zaccheus and Mary Greeley. He declined a scholarship to Phillips Exeter Academy and left school at the age of 14. After serving as a printer's apprentice to Amos Bliss, editor of the Northern Spectator, a newspaper in East Poultney, Vermont, and working as a printer on the Erie Gazette in Erie, Pennsylvania, in 1831 he went to New York City to seek his fortune as an editor. Three years later, having worked as a printer for the Evening Post and several other newspapers, he had accumulated enough capital to launch a weekly literary and news journal, the New Yorker, and, in 1840, a Whig campaign weekly, the Log Cabin.
Last Days of Horace Greeley Edit
Greeley's wife died shortly before the election, and he descended into madness and died before the electoral votes could be cast. In his final illness, allegedly Greeley spotted Reid and cried out, "You son of a bitch, you stole my newspaper." Greeley died on Friday, November 29, 1872, at Choate House in Pleasantville, New York. His death came before the Electoral College met. He would have received 66 electoral votes; they were scattered among others because of his death. However, three of Georgia's electoral votes were left blank in honor of him. (Other sources report Greeley receiving three electoral votes posthumously, with those votes being disallowed by Congress.)
Although Greeley had requested a simple funeral, his daughters ignored his wishes and arranged a grand affair. He is buried in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery.
Weeks before his death, Greeley drew up a new will, which left his estate to his older surviving daughter, Ida, with direction to use half the estate to support the other surviving child, Gabrielle. This replaced a will from January 1871, which directly divided the estate to the two daughters, and also provided inheritances to his siblings' families, and bequests to charities. There was a surrogate court battle to vacate the 1872 will, and ultimately, it was withdrawn. The court refused the withdrawal, but declared the 1872 will invalid due to Greeley being of unsound mind at the time.
Family Life Edit
Greeley married Mary Young Cheney, whom he met in New York City, on on July 5, 1836.
Burial Site Edit
Burial: Green-Wood Cemetery / Brooklyn / Kings County (Brooklyn) / New York, USA Plot: Section 35, Lot 2344
|Offspring of Horace Greeley and Mary Young Cheney (1811-1872)|
|Arthur Young Greeley (1844-1849)|| |
|Ida Greeley|| |
|Gabrielle Rosamond Greeley (1857-1937)|
|Offspring of Zaccheus Greeley and Mary Woodburn (1788-1855)|
|Horace Greeley (1811-1872)||3 February 1811 Amherst, Hillsborough County, New Hampshire||29 November 1872 Pleasantville, Westchester County, New York|| Mary Young Cheney (1811-1872)|