Miller Center

Ebenezer R. Hoar (1869–1870) - Attorney General

[cite this]

↑Ulysses S. Grant Home Page

Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar was born in 1816 in Concord, Massachusetts. He graduated from Harvard College in 1835, received a law degree from Harvard Law School in 1939, and pursued politics, first as a Whig, then as a member of the abolitionist Free Soil Party, and finally as a Republican.

From 1849 to 1855, Hoar served as judge of common pleas in Massachusetts, and from 1859 to 1869, as associate justice on the Massachusetts Supreme Court. He then became the first of President Ulysses S. Grant’s five attorney generals. During his time in office, Hoar witnessed the transition of the Office of Attorney General to the Department of Justice.

In 1869, President Grant nominated Hoar to a seat on the United States Supreme Court, but the Senate did not confirm him. As a result, Hoar resigned from Grant’s cabinet in 1870, though he continued to serve the President as a member of a special commission. Hoar won election to the House of Representatives in 1872 but failed in a second bid in 1876. He then retired from politics and resumed his law practice. Ebenezer Rockwood Hoar died in 1895.

Citation Information

Consulting Editor

Joan Waugh

Professor Waugh is a professor of history at the University of California, Los Angeles. Her writings include:

U.S. Grant: American Hero, American Myth (University of North Carolina Press, 2009)

Wars within a War: Controversy and Conflict over the American Civil War (editor with Gary W. Gallagher, University of North Carolina Press, 2009)

The Memory of the Civil War in American Culture (editor with Alice Fahs, University of North Carolina Press, 2004)

Unsentimental Reformer: The Life of Josephine Shaw Lowell (Harvard University Press, 1998)