Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century
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BINGHAM, John A., lawyer, born in Mercer, Pennsylvania, in 1815. He passed two years in a printing-office, and then entered Franklin College, Ohio, but left, on account of his health, before graduation. He was admitted to the bar in 1840, was district attorney for Tuscarawas County, Ohio, from 1846 till 1849, was elected to congress as a republican in 1854, and re-elected three times, sitting from 1855 till 1863. He prepared in the 34th congress the report on the contested Illinois elections, and in 1862 was chairman of the managers of the house in the impeachment of Judge Humphreys for high treason. He failed of re-election in 1864, and was appointed by President Lincoln judge-advocate in the army, and later the same year solicitor of the court of claims. He was special judge-advocate in the trial of the assassins of President Lincoln. In 1865 he returned to congress, and sat until 1873, serving on the committees on military affairs, freedmen, and reconstruction, and in the 40th congress as chairman of the committees on claims and judiciary, and as one of the managers in the impeachment trial of President Johnson. On 3 May 1873, he received the appointment of minister to Japan, which post he held until 1885, when he was recalled by President Cleveland.
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