Historian to give talk about Ohio Congressman connected to Hayes, Lincoln

A historian will discuss an Ohio congressman’s role in drafting the amendment that gave citizenship to anyone born or naturalized in the United States, including former slaves, on Sunday, Jan. 26, at the Hayes Presidential Library & Museums.

Sam Kidder will discuss Congressman John A. Bingham’s role in the 14th Amendment, which also guaranteed equal protection under the law to all U.S. citizens, and Bingham’s relationship to Presidents Rutherford B. Hayes and Abraham Lincoln at 2 p.m. in the museum auditorium. Admission is free.

Kidder served three years at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo and studied East Asian history at Harvard University and the University of Washington.

Bingham has been called the Second Madison or American Founding Son for his role in drafting 14th Amendment, which was ratified in 1868. A friend and political supporter of President Hayes, Bingham’s role during the years immediately after the Civil War is attracting more and more attention from historians.

A trusted advisor to President Lincoln, Bingham served as the lone civilian prosecutor in the trial of the Lincoln assassins and delivered the articles of impeachment from the House to the Senate in the trial of President Andrew Johnson.

Following his remarkable career on Capitol Hill, Bingham was appointed by President Ulysses Grant to be America’s envoy to Japan. Hayes retained Bingham in his Japan posting, and Bingham went on to become the United States’ longest serving ambassador to a key Asian nation.

Japan, at the time, was just emerging from centuries of feudal military-style government and beginning the process of modernization.

The Hayes Presidential Library & Museums is America’s first presidential library and the forerunner for the federal presidential library system. It is partially funded by the state of Ohio and affiliated with the Ohio History Connection. The Hayes Presidential Library & Museums is located at Spiegel Grove at the corner of Hayes and Buckland avenues.

For information, call 419-332-2081, or visit rbhayes.org. Like HPLM on Facebook at @rbhayespres and follow on Twitter and Instagram at @rbhayespres.