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Aiken, George David (20 August 1892–19 November 1984), farmer and U.S. senator, was born in Dummerston, Vermont, the son of Edward W. Aiken and Myra Cook, farmers. He attended high school in Brattleboro. In 1914 he married Beatrice M. Howard; they had four children. His first wife died in 1966, and a year later Aiken married one of his Senate aides, Lola Pierotti....

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Bouligny, Dominique (23 August 1773–05 March 1833), soldier, planter, and U.S. senator, was born in New Orleans, Louisiana, the son of Francisco Bouligny, the lieutenant governor of Louisiana, a colonel in the Fixed Louisiana Regiment, and the acting governor of Louisiana, and Marie Louise le Sénéchal d’Auberville. He spent his childhood in the comfort that his father’s influence and wealth provided. Surrounded by a large extended family and a full complement of house servants, Bouligny developed a strong attachment to his family, an even stronger admiration for the military that commanded his father’s devotion, and pride in being a citizen of Spain. Louisiana offered few opportunities for the sons of army officers outside of military service. Sons of officers entered the army at an early age, and as a senior officer in the Fixed Louisiana Regiment, Bouligny’s father arranged an appointment for his twelve-year-old son as a cadet in the regimental school in March 1786. His father’s influence assured Bouligny’s rapid promotion to the first officer rank of sublieutenant at the age of fourteen....

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Harris, William Alexander (29 October 1841–20 December 1909), stockman, U.S. senator, and U.S. congressman, was born in Loudoun County, Virginia, the son of William Alexander Harris, a lawyer, congressman, diplomat, and journalist, and Frances Murray. He attended school in Luray, Page County, Virginia, and then enrolled at Columbian College (now George Washington University) in Washington, D.C., from which he graduated in 1859. He spent the next few months in Nicaragua preparing a preliminary survey for a projected interocean canal before entering Virginia Military Institute, graduating early, in 1861, so he and his classmates could join the Confederate army....

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Izard, Ralph (23 January 1742–30 May 1804), planter and politician, was born near Charleston, South Carolina, the son of Henry Izard, a planter, and Margaret Johnson. His great-grandfather (also Ralph Izard) had emigrated from England in 1682, acquired land, and gained prominence in provincial politics. By the mid-eighteenth century, when the family properties in Berkeley County, South Carolina, descended to Izard’s parents, the family had maintained a strong position in the Carolina house of assembly and in the Anglican vestry....

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Ladd, Edwin Fremont (13 December 1859–22 June 1925), agricultural scientist and U.S. senator, was born near Starks, Maine, the son of John Ladd and Rosilla Locke, farmers. Reflecting the progressive agricultural notions of his parents, Ladd earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry at the University of Maine in 1884. After graduation he was employed as an agricultural chemist at the New York Agricultural Experiment Station at Geneva, where he worked under ...

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Porter, Alexander (24 June 1785–13 January 1844), U.S. senator and Louisiana sugar planter, was born in County Donegal, Ireland, the son of James Porter, a Presbyterian minister and natural scientist, and Anna Knox. Following the execution of his father by the British during the revolution of 1798, in 1801 he emigrated to America, settling with his younger brother James and uncle Alexander Porter in Nashville, Tennessee, where he worked in the latter’s store, studied law, and won admission to the bar in 1807. Following the advice of ...