Elected vice president on the Republican ticket of 1880, Arthur acceded to the presidency upon the assassination of President James A. Garfield. © 2020 A&E Television Networks, LLC. In 1871, an era of political machines and patronage, Arthur was named to the powerful position of customs collector for the Port of New York. Chester Arthur was selected as his running mate. This did not happen. Nicknamed the Gentleman Boss and Elegant Arthur, he reportedly owned 80 pairs of pants. Arthur’s administration also fought fraud in the U.S. Additionally, the Pendleton Act allowed for the establishment of a bipartisan Civil Service Commission to enforce the law. Chester Arthur began his legal career in New York City and as a young attorney won several high-profile civil rights cases. One year later, he successfully represented Lizzie Jennings, an African American, in her suit against a Brooklyn streetcar company for forcing her off a car reserved for whites. Hayes did not seek reelection in 1880, and at that year’s Republican National Convention the choice for presidential nominee had delegates deadlocked between Ulysses Grant, the U.S. president from 1869 to 1877, and James Blaine (1830-93), a U.S. senator from Maine. Two days later, in Washington, D.C., Arthur was given the oath of office by the chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court. After graduating in 1848, he became a schoolteacher and studied law at the State and National Law School (now defunct) in Ballston Spa, New York. Arthur is now president of the United States.”…. Postal Service and pushed for the modernization of the U.S. Navy. Before becoming president, he was most noted as the Collector of Customs for the port of New York, a job he got from his political friendships. All Rights Reserved. Chester Arthur was one of five Presidents who was never elected — he took office after James Garfield's assassination and served nearly a full term. Said to have been deeply wounded by the public’s low regard for him, Arthur proceeded to prove that he could rise above expectations. Chester Alan Arthur (October 5 th, 1829 – November 18 th, 1886) was a Stalwart and the the 21 st President of the United States. His interest for public service and politics showed in as early as his childhood years, but he was not the type of kid who was abnormally uninterested in playing pranks and enjoying the good old and short days of being a boy. While in office, Arthur rose above partisanship and in 1883 signed the Pendleton Act, which required government jobs to be distributed based on merit. The phrase “New Frontier” is associated with which U.S. president? Although Arthur collected the customs duties with integrity, he continued the practice of overstaffing the customhouse with employees whose chief qualification was loyalty to Conkling. After President James A. Garfield died, vice-president Chester Arthur replaced him. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). Arthur was also involved in the so-called Lemmon slave case, in which the New York Supreme Court ruled in 1860 that slaves being transferred to a slave state through New York would be freed. He kept the condition a secret from the public; however, his poor health prevented him from actively seeking reelection in 1884. His political rise took place in the not-quite-squeaky-clean New York political machine, where he had a reputation for cronyism and allegedly demanded kickbacks from workers to support the Republican Party. When Garfield was assassinated by a disappointed office seeker who wanted the Stalwart Arthur to be president, public apprehension increased markedly. Access hundreds of hours of historical video, commercial free, with HISTORY Vault. In 1855, he successfully represented Elizabeth Jennings Graham (1830-1901), a black woman who had been denied a seat on a Manhattan streetcar due to her race. He withdrew troops from the Reconstruction states in order to restore local control and good will, a decision that many perceived ...read more, Grover Cleveland (1837-1908), who served as the 22nd and 24th U.S. president, was known as a political reformer. Born in an ...read more, Rutherford B. Hayes (1822-1893), the 19th president of the United States, won a controversial and fiercely disputed election against Samuel Tilden. In the White House, Chester Arthur’s sister Mary McElroy (1841-1917) often took on the role of hostess for social functions.
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