Fish, Hamilton

Fish, Hamilton,

1849–1936: see FishFish,
family long prominent in New York politics.

Nicholas Fish, 1758–1833, b. New York City. He studied law before serving ably as a major in a New York regiment throughout the American Revolution.
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, family.

Fish, Hamilton,

1926–96: see FishFish,
family long prominent in New York politics.

Nicholas Fish, 1758–1833, b. New York City. He studied law before serving ably as a major in a New York regiment throughout the American Revolution.
..... Click the link for more information.
, family.

Fish, Hamilton,

1888–1991: see FishFish,
family long prominent in New York politics.

Nicholas Fish, 1758–1833, b. New York City. He studied law before serving ably as a major in a New York regiment throughout the American Revolution.
..... Click the link for more information.
, family.

Fish, Hamilton,

1808–93, American statesman, b. New York City, grad. Columbia, 1827; son of Nicholas Fish (1758–1833). He studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1830.

Named for his father's friend Alexander Hamilton, and heir to the Federalist tradition, Fish naturally gravitated to politics as a Whig. He served as U.S. Representative (1843–45) and was elected lieutenant governor of New York in 1847 and governor, for a two-year term, in 1848. From 1851 to 1857, Fish was a U.S. Senator, serving on the foreign relations committee in 1855–57. A moderate antislavery man, he opposed both abolitionist and proslavery excesses and deplored the breakup of the Whigs as a national party. Slow to join the new Republican party, he lost his national political standing but became prominent in civic activities in New York.

Fish was one of many to lionize the victorious Civil War general Ulysses S. GrantGrant, Ulysses Simpson,
1822–85, commander in chief of the Union army in the Civil War and 18th President (1869–77) of the United States, b. Point Pleasant, Ohio. He was originally named Hiram Ulysses Grant.
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, but his appointment (Mar., 1869) as Grant's Secretary of State, to succeed the grossly miscast Elihu B. Washburne, came as a surprise. He accepted reluctantly and expected to hold the office for only a few months, but actually remained in the cabinet longer than any other member, serving through both of Grant's administrations.

Fish was one of the ablest of U.S. Secretaries of State. Grant was much impressed with Fish's character and ability, and he called upon Fish's aid in the administration of domestic affairs as well. Fish's greatest achievement as Secretary was bringing about the treaty (see Washington, Treaty ofWashington, Treaty of,
May, 1871, agreement concluded between the United States and Great Britain in Washington, D.C. Its principal articles provided for determination of the Alabama claims by an international commission.
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) that paved the way for settlement of the Alabama claims and other long-standing disputes with Great Britain. This was accomplished amid great difficulties, especially those offered by the vigorously anti-British chairman of the Senate foreign relations committee, Charles SumnerSumner, Charles,
1811–74, U.S. senator from Massachusetts (1851–74), b. Boston. He attended (1831–33) and was later a lecturer at Harvard law school, was admitted (1834) to the bar, and practiced in Boston. He spent the years 1837 to 1840 in Europe.
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.

The period was one of constant trouble with Spain, arising out of the Ten Years War, and Fish was hard pressed to persuade Grant not to recognize the belligerency of Cuba. Under Fish's vigilant eye filibustering expeditions from the United States to Cuba were kept to a minimum, but the Virginius affairVirginius affair,
1873, incident that came near to causing war between the United States and Spain. The Virginius, a filibustering ship, was fraudulently flying the American flag and carrying arms to the Cubans in the Ten Years War.
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 in 1873 nearly brought the nation, long sympathetic to the Cuban cause, to war with Spain. To secure Grant's support of other policies Fish supported without enthusiasm the President's unsuccessful project to annex the Dominican Republic.

Bibliography

See A. Nevins, Hamilton Fish: The Inner History of the Grant Administration (1936, repr. 1957).

Fish, Hamilton

(1808–93) lawyer, cabinet member, legislator; born in New York City. He was admitted to the New York bar (1830). He served in the U.S. House of Representatives (Whig, N.Y.; 1843–45), as governor of New York (1849–50), and as U.S. senator (Whig, N.Y.; 1851–57). As secretary of state (1869–77), he signed the Washington Treaty (1871), which provided for arbitration in the Alabama case, and negotiated with Spain over problems arising from a rebellion in Cuba.
References in periodicals archive ?
When using live chum, strip the line to make the fly mimic a fleeing bait fish, Hamilton advises.