World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

David Tod

Article Id: WHEBN0000700228
Reproduction Date:

Title: David Tod  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: John Brough, List of Governors of Ohio, Ohio gubernatorial elections, War Democrats, War Governors' Conference
Collection: 1805 Births, 1868 Deaths, 19Th-Century American Diplomats, 19Th-Century American Railroad Executives, American Businesspeople, American Diplomats, American Mining Businesspeople, American People of Scottish Descent, American Postmasters, Businesspeople in Mining, Deaths from Stroke, Governors of Ohio, Ohio Democrats, Ohio Lawyers, Ohio Republicans, Ohio State Senators, People from Youngstown, Ohio, People of Ohio in the American Civil War, Republican Party State Governors of the United States, Union State Governors, United States Presidential Electors
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

David Tod

David Tod
25th Governor of Ohio
In office
January 4, 1862 – January 11, 1864
Lieutenant Benjamin Stanton
Preceded by William Dennison
Succeeded by John Brough
Personal details
Born (1805-02-21)February 21, 1805
Youngstown, Ohio
Died November 13, 1868(1868-11-13) (aged 63)
Youngstown, Ohio
Political party National Union

David Tod (February 21, 1805 – November 13, 1868) was a politician and industrialist from the U.S. state of Ohio. As the 25th Governor of Ohio, Tod gained recognition for his forceful and energetic leadership during the American Civil War.[1]

A Democrat who supported the war effort, Tod helped to maintain a fragile alliance between the state's Republicans and War Democrats and took steps to secure Ohio's borders. In 1863, the state's pro-Union party failed to nominate Tod for a second term because of his tepid support for the abolition of slavery and his unpopularity among the state's myriad political factions.[2]

After completing his two-year term as Ohio governor, Tod turned down an invitation to serve in the government of President Abraham Lincoln, citing poor health. Tod died of a stroke in 1868, four years after the end of the war.


  • Early life 1
  • Early political career 2
  • Civil War governor 3
  • Later years 4
  • Notes 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

Early life

Tod was born in Ohio Supreme Court in 1807.[4]

David Tod attended Burton Academy in Geauga County and studied law in Warren, where he was appointed postmaster. Admitted to the Ohio bar in 1827, he accumulated considerable wealth as a lawyer actively involved in the coal and iron industries of the Mahoning Valley, and he went on to become president of the Cleveland and Mahoning Railroad.

Early political career

Tod was in the Ohio State Senate from 1838 to 1840.[5] He was a candidate for Ohio's governorship as a Democrat in 1844 and 1846, running on a strongly anti-national bank platform, but lost both elections. He was appointed by President James K. Polk as minister (ambassador) to Brazil from 1847 to 1851.[6] He presided over the 1860 Democratic National Convention in Baltimore after the resignation of Caleb Cushing as convention president.

Although previously a strong Democrat, Tod joined the pro-Union alliance between the Republican Party and Ohio's War Democrats at the outset of the Civil War.[7] On September 5, 1861, Republicans and War Democrats met in Columbus, Ohio, to form the National Union Party. The newly established party promptly abandoned the state's beleaguered Republican governor, William Dennison, and threw its support behind Tod – a move designed to strengthen solidarity between War Democrats and Republicans.[7]

Meanwhile, the War Democrats who had not joined the National Union Party nominated Hugh J. Jewett, who called for reconciliation with the South but "stopped short of taking a strong antiwar stance".[7] Tod won the election, polling 206,997 votes to Jewett's 151,774—a result that indicated the National Union Party had made few inroads among Democratic voters.[6] Tod ultimately served one term as governor, leading the state from 1862 to 1864.

Civil War governor

David Tod as governor of Ohio

Governor Tod faced significant difficulties in encouraging military recruitment and providing for Ohio troops in the field, but gained the nickname "the soldier's friend". As historian George W. Knepper observed, the governor was compelled, near the outset of his administration, to "deal with the highly emotional aftermath of the battle of Shiloh", a costly victory in which Ohio alone suffered 2,000 casualties.[8] Several months later, when Confederate troops under the leadership of Stonewall Jackson threatened Washington, D.C., Tod was able to secure 5,000 volunteers to provide three months of service.[6] He was less successful, however, in filling Ohio's federally mandated quota of 74,000 troops.[6] In time, he advocated federal conscription, writing to Secretary of War Edwin Stanton, "With this Ohio will... respond to any further calls made upon her, but without it would be impossible to raise any considerable number". Among those Ohioans who participated in the war effort was Tod's nephew, Brigadier General James Hobart Ford, who served in the Trans-Mississippi Theater of the War.[9]

States could use their own tax money to supplement the work of the United States Sanitary Commission as Ohio did. Under the energetic leadership of Governor Tod, Ohio acted vigorously. Following the unexpected carnage at the Battle of Shiloh in Tennessee in April 1863, it send 3 steamboats to the scene as floating hospitals loaded with doctors, nurses and medical supplies. The state fleet expanded to eleven hospital ships. The state also set up 12 local offices in main transportation nodes across the Midwest to assist Ohio soldiers moving back and forth.[10]

Tod was challenged to maintain the state's security during the war, calling out the militia to respond to a [11] At the same time, as historian Richard H. Abbott observed, Tod also "battled with recalcitrant Democrats, unruly newspaper editors, draft rioters, and strange secret societies".[12] He was compelled to call out troops to bring an end to draft riots in Holmes County, which became popularly known as the "Battle of Fort Fizzle".[13]

He recommended the federal military arrest of Copperhead leaders such as Dr. Edson B. Olds—who sued him for kidnapping and actually had the governor briefly arrested, before the Supreme Court of Ohio issued a writ of habeas corpus–and Clement Vallandigham.[14] In 1862, he attended the Loyal War Governors' Conference in Altoona, Pennsylvania, which ultimately backed Abraham Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation and the Union war effort. At the same time, Tod resisted the idea of using black troops in the war effort. When black abolitionist leader John Mercer Langston urged the governor to enlist African-American soldiers to help the state fill its draft quotas, Tod responded sharply, saying, "Do you not know, Mr. Langston, that this is a white man's government; that white men are able to defend and protect it?"[15] Nevertheless, by 1863, blacks were being enrolled in Ohio's volunteer units, and more than 5,000 served in state or federal units.[16]

Governor Tod has aided me more and troubled me less than any other governor.
— Abraham Lincoln, [17]

Later years

David Tod bust inside the National McKinley Birthplace Memorial

Tod was unable to secure the pro-Union renomination in 1863, losing it to another War Democrat, John Brough, who enjoyed greater popularity among Ohioans and more actively supported the anti-slavery direction the Northern war effort had by then taken.[2] President Abraham Lincoln then offered Tod the post of U.S. Secretary of the Treasury, telling an aide, "He is my friend, with a big head full of brains... he made a good governor, and has made a fortune for himself". Tod, knowing he was not radical enough for Republicans in the United States Senate and in fragile health, declined the appointment. Tod died of a stroke in 1868, at the age of 63, leaving a widow and seven children.[18] He was a Republican Presidential elector in 1868 for Grant/Colfax. He died before the meeting of electors, and was replaced by G. V. Dorsey.[17]

Since his death, Tod has gained recognition as an effective political leader who guided his state through a difficult period. As Delmer J. Trester wrote: "His administration was characterized by intense patriotism, devotion to duty, administrative ability, and unflagging energy. Ohio was fortunate to have David Tod as one of its war governors".[1]


  1. ^ a b Trester, Delmer J. "David Tod". Ohio Historical Society. Retrieved 2008-04-12. 
  2. ^ a b Knepper (1989) : 244
  3. ^ Milligan (2003) : 259
  4. ^ Milligan (2003) : 261
  5. ^ Ohio (1917), p. 232.
  6. ^ a b c d Roseboom and Weisenburger (1961) : 188
  7. ^ a b c Knepper (1989) : 233
  8. ^ Knepper (1989) : 233–234
  9. ^ Eicher 2001 : 239
  10. ^ Eugene E. Roseboom, The Civil War Era, 1850-1873 (1944) p 396
  11. ^ Roseboom and Weisenburger (1961) : 194–195
  12. ^ page 32, Abbott, Richard H., Ohio’s War Governors, Ohio State University Press for the Ohio Historical Society, 1962
  13. ^ page 5633, Orison Swett Marden, ed., The Consolidated Encyclopedic Library, Vol. XIX, New York: The Emerson Press, 1903.
  14. ^ Roseboom and Weisenburger (1961) : 190–192
  15. ^ Gerber (1976) : 33–34
  16. ^ Knepper (1989) : 238
  17. ^ a b Smith 1898 : 143
  18. ^ "David Tod".  


  • Eicher, John H;  
  • Gerber, David A. (1976). Black Ohio and the Color Line, 1860–1915. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press.  
  • Knepper, George W. (1989). Ohio and Its People. Kent, OH: Kent State University Press.  
  • Milligan, Fred J. (2003). Ohio's Founding Fathers.  
  • Roseboom, Eugene H.; Weisenburger, Francis P. (1961). A History of Ohio. Columbus:  
  • Smith, Joseph P, ed. (1898). History of the Republican Party in Ohio I. Chicago: the Lewis Publishing Company. p. 143. 
  • This article incorporates facts obtained from:  

External links

  • David Tod at Ohio History Central
  • David Tod proclamation, W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, The University of Alabama.
  •  "Tod, David".  
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Hawaii eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.