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05/16/2021 09:29 PM
Pennsylvania State Senate

William Bradford Reed


Session Position District Party
1841 1 Whig
 Counties   Philadelphia


1806 - 1876

William Bradford Reed, politician and journalist, was born in Philadelphia on June 30, 1806, the son of Joseph and Maria Ellis (Watmaugh) Reed; graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1825; travelled to Mexico as private secretary of Joel R. Poinsett, studied law; was elected to state House of Representatives, 1834-35; elected State Attorney-General (1838), vice-president of the Law Academy of Philadelphia, 1840-41; state Senator, 1841; professor of American history at the University of Pennsylvania, 1850; US Minister to China, 1857, where he negotiated the Treaty of June, 1858; and on his return in 1860 became active in Democratic Party politics and in New York journalism. For a time he was American correspondent with The New York Times, and published a number of controversial and historical pamphlets; contributing essays chiefly to the American Quarterly and the North American Review. He wrote Life and Correspondence of Joseph Reed, his grandfather (1847), and Life of Esther de Berdt, - afterward Esther Reed, his grandmother (1853).  The Hon. William B. Reed died in New York City, February 18, 1876.