Horner, John Scott 1802 - 1883 | Wisconsin Historical Society

Historical Essay

Horner, John Scott 1802 - 1883

Horner, John Scott 1802 - 1883 | Wisconsin Historical Society

lawyer, politician, land speculator, b. Warrenton, Va. He graduated from Washington College, Pa. (1819), read law, was admitted to the Virginia bar, and practiced law in that state for several years. A Democrat, in 1835 he was appointed by President Andrew Jackson as secretary and acting governor of Michigan Territory. In this capacity, Horner helped settle boundary disputes between Michigan and Ohio; Michigan, however, was rapidly approaching statehood, and Horner's duties werer largely confined to the area west of Lake Michigan. In 1836 he was appointed secretary of the newly formed territory of Wisconsin with offices in Mineral Point and held this position for one year (1836-1837). In 1837 he was transferred to the position of register of the Green Bay land office. Although the income from this position was at first meagre, as compared to the land sales in the lead region, Homer eventually acquired considerable land-holdings. He was register at Green Bay (1837-1846). In 1846 he moved to a farm near Green Lake, and for several years was probate judge of Marquette County. With David P. Mapes (q.v.), Horner was one of the founders of the city of Ripon (1849), and named it after his family's ancestral home in England. Horner later moved to Ripon and devoted himself to promoting his real-estate holdings. Proc. State Hist. Soc. Wis., 1905 (1906); Mich. Hist. Colls., 38 (1912).

The Wisconsin Historical Society has manuscripts related to this topic. See the catalog description of the John S. Horner Communications for details.

View newspaper clippings at Wisconsin Local History and Biography Articles.

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[Source: Dictionary of Wisconsin biography]