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Profile of the Day: Rutherford B. Hayes

Profile of the Day: Rutherford B. Hayes

Rutherford B. Hayes

On this day in 1822, Rutherford B. Hayes, the 19th President of the United States, was born. He was born in Delaware, Ohio to Sophia Richard and Rutherford Hayes, Jr., who died a few weeks before his birth. His great-grandfather, Ezekiel Hayes, was a militia captain during the American Revolutionary War.

Hayes was a staunch abolitionist and during the Civil War, served in the Union Army. While still serving in the army, Hayes was elected to Congress despite refusing to campaign. Once the war ended, Hayes took his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives.

The presidential election of 1876 would be remembered as one of the most controversial elections in American history. Hayes lost the popular vote to Democratic candidate Samuel Tilden, but neither candidate received a majority electoral votes as several votes were in dispute. A special electoral commission was created, which ultimately awarded Hayes the contested electoral votes, giving him the majority needed to win the presidency. On March 3, 1877, Hayes took the oath of office privately in the Red Room of the White House.

In keeping with secret pledges made during the electoral dispute, one of Hayes first acts as President was to withdraw federal troops from Southern states, thus bringing an end to the Reconstruction era. At the end of his term, Hayes refused to run for re-election and retired to his home in Ohio. In his retirement, Hayes became an advocate of social and educational reforms.

Explore Rutherford B. Hayes’s family tree on Geni and share how you’re related to the 19th President of the United States.

View Rutherford Hayes’s Geni Profile


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Image: Library of Congress


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