He graduated from the Philadelphia High School in 1850 and went on to study law, but engaged in mercantile pursuits until he entered the United States Navy as acting assistant paymaster in 1863.
On account of impaired health he resigned in 1864 and resumed the study of law, and was admitted to the bar in 1867. He was one of the commissioners on behalf of the Centennial from the city of Philadelphia to Vienna, Austria, in 1873. He was elected in 1874 as a Republican to the 44th Congress and served two terms.
He declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1878.