Thomas Updegraff Edit Profile
He attended the University of Notre Dame, then moved to Iowa.
His two periods of service were separated by ten years out of Congress. He was the clerk of the district court of Clayton County, Iowa, from 1856 to 1860. After studying law, he was admitted to the bar in 1860 and commenced practice in McGregor, Iowa.
In November of the same year, he was elected as a Republican to the United States House of Representatives from Iowa's 3rd congressional district, which was then made up of the seven counties in Iowa's northeastern corner. Two years later (in 1880), he was re-elected to a second term. One year later, the Iowa General Assembly reapportioned the congressional districts to accommodate the addition of two additional seats, placing Updegraff's home county in a reconfigured 4th congressional district.
However, in the general election he was defeated by Luman Hamlin Weller of the United States Greenback Party. Updegraff had served Iowa's 3rd congressional district from March 4, 1879 to March 3, 1883. He was a delegate to the 1888 Republican National Convention.
In 1892, he again ran for Congress in Iowa's 4th district, winning not only the Republican nomination but also the general election (where he defeated incumbent Democrat Walter Halben Butler). He was re-elected to two more terms. However, in 1898, he was defeated in his bid for the Republican nomination by Gilbert N. Haugen, who would go on to serve seventeen consecutive terms.
In all, Updegraff served the 4th congressional district from March 4, 1893 to March 3, 1899. Updegraff then returned to McGregor to resume the practice of law. He died in McGregor, and was interred there in Pleasant Grove Cemetery.
Member Iowa House of Representatives, 1878. Member board education and city solicitor, McGregor, 1870-1892. Member 46th and 47th Congresses (1879-1883) and 53d to 55th Congresses (1903-1909), 4th Iowa District.
Married Laura A. Platt, June 1, 1858 (died 1865). Married second, Florence E. H. Haight, October 2, 1867 (died 1902).