Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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KING, Horatio, postmaster-general, born in Paris, Oxford County, Maine, 21 June, 1811. His grandfather, George King, fought in the war of the Revolution. Horatio received a common school education, and at the age of eighteen entered the office of the Paris, Maine, " Jeffersonian," where he learned printing, afterward becoming owner and editor of the paper. In 1833 he moved it to Portland, where he published it until 1 January, 1838. In 1839 he went to Washington, D. C., having been appointed clerk in the post office department, and was gradually promoted. In 1854 he was appointed first assistant postmaster-general, and in January, 1861, while acting as postmaster-general, he was questioned by a member of congress from South Carolina with regard to the franking privilege. In his reply Mr. King was the first officially to deny the power of a state to separate from the Union. He was then appointed postmaster-general, serving from 12 February until 7 March, 1861. On retiring from office he remained in Washington during the civil war, serving on a board of commissioners to carry into execution the emancipation law in the District of Columbia. Since his retirement from office Mr. King has practised in Washington as an attorney before the executive department and international commissions. He was active in procuring the passage of three acts in 1874, 1879, and 1885 respectively, requiring the use of the official "penalty envelope," which has secured a large saving to the government. He also took an active part, in the work of completing the Washington monument, serving as secretary of the Monument society from 1881. Mr. King has been a frequent contributor to the press, and has published "An Oration before the Union Literary Society of Washington " (Washington, D. C., 1841), and "Sketches of Travel; or, Twelve Months in Europe" (1878). --His son, Horatio Collins, lawyer, born in Portland, Maine, 22 December, 1837, was graduated at Dickinson in 1858, studied law, and was admitted to the bar in New York city in 1861. He served in the armies of the Potomac and Shenandoah during the civil war from August, 1862, till October, 1865, when he resigned with the rank of brevet-colonel. He then practised law until 1870, when he became connected with the press. In 1883 he was appointed judge-advocate-general of New York. He is the author of " The Plymouth Silver Wedding" (New York, 1873); " The Brooklyn Congregational Council" (1876); "King's Guide to Regimental Courts-Martial" (1882); and edited "Proceedings of the Army of the Potomac" (1879-'87).
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