Bartlett Tripp Edit Profile
He then attended Albany Law School, graduating in 1867.
The family moved from Harmony to the nearby town of Ripley in 1844. Bartlett Tripp entered Colby College in 1857, but left without graduating in 1861 to travel to California. On the way he visited his older half-brother William in Iowa and also visited the south-eastern part of the Dakota Territory.
He eventually returned to Maine to regain his health. Following law school, Tripp practiced law, first in Maine and then in Yankton with his half-brother William, who had been appointed as a Surveyor General for Dakota Territory. Bartlett was part of a commission that codified the laws of the territory, and served as president of an 1883 constitutional convention.
From 1885 to 1889 he served as Chief Justice of the territorial Supreme Court. From 1893 to 1897 he served as Ambassador to Austria under president Grover Cleveland. In December 1897 he was elected to be the first president of the new South Dakota Bar Association.
In 1899, at the request of McKinley, he headed an American/British/German commission which visited Samoa and helped negotiate the Tripartite Convention of 1899 which settled disputes between those countries over the area. Tripp later published a book on his experiences there (My Trip to Samoa, 1911). After the establishment of the University of South Dakota College of Law in 1901, he lectured on constitutional law and taxation there.
Tripp was briefly considered a candidate to be the Republican nominee for Vice President under McKinley in 1900, but he withdrew after Theodore Roosevelt entered the field. Tripp County and the town of Tripp in South Dakota are named after Bartlett Tripp. Tripp Park in Yankton was sold to the city for $1 by Tripp's estate.
Tripp had intended to give the land to the city, but hadn't completed the transaction in his lifetime.
He was active in Democratic Party politics, serving as Dakota Territory party chairman, delegate to the national convention in 1872 and 1892, and in 1878 the Democratic candidate for the Territory's delegate in Congress.