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Jonathan Ross Edit Profile

lawyer , politician , United States senator , member of the Vermont House of Representatives

Jonathan Ross, American lawyer. member Vermont legislature, 1865, 1866 and 1867; member State Board of Education, 1866-1870; member last Council of Censors, 1869.


Ross, Jonathan was born on April 30, 1826 in Waterford, Vermont, United States. Son of Royal and Eliza (Mason) Ross.


Ross attended the public schools and St. Johnsbury Academy. He graduated from Dartmouth College in 1851 and was principal of the Chelsea and Craftsbury Academies from 1851 to 1856. He studied law in the Chelsea office of former Congressman William Hebard and was admitted to the bar in 1856.


He served as Chief Justice of the Vermont Supreme Court and as United States Senator from Vermont. He was Treasurer of Passumpsic Savings Bank from 1858 to 1868. He practiced law in St. Johnsbury until 1870.

He was judge of the Vermont Supreme Court form 1870 to 1890 and Chief Justice of Vermont from 1890 to 1899. Ross was appointed as a Republican candidate to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Justin S. Morrill, serving from January 11, 1899 to October 18, 1900, when a successor was elected. While in the Senate, he was chairman of the United States Senate Committee to Examine Branches of the Civil Service (Fifty-sixth Congress).

He was not an active candidate for reelection in 1900. After his time in the Senate, he was chairman of the board of State railroad commissioners from 1900 to 1902. Ross retired to his home in St. Johnsbury, where he resided until his death.

Ross died on February 23, 1905 from injuries sustained when his sleigh was struck by a train. Ross is interred at Mount Pleasant Cemetery in St. Johnsbury, Vermont.


After being State's attorney for Caledonia County from 1862 to 1863, he was appointed a member of the State board of education, holding that office from 1866 to 1870. From 1865 to 1867, Ross was a member of the Vermont House of Representatives and was a State senator in 1870. He was a member of the State Board of Education from 1866 to 1870 and served on the Vermont Council of Censors in 1869.


Royal Ross

Eliza (Mason) Ross