Benjamin Franklin Butler (lawyer)

Benjamin Franklin Butler ( * December 17 1795 in Columbia County, New York, † November 8, 1858 in Paris) was an American lawyer and politician, the Cabinet of the United States under Presidents Andrew Jackson and Martin Van Buren as Minister of Justice belonged.

Study and career

After school the descendant of Oliver Cromwell graduated from Martin Van Buren, a study of the law. After admission to the bar he joined in 1817 in the firm as a partner. From 1821 to 1824 he was then working as a district attorney in Albany County before becoming one of three state commissioners to revise the statutes of the State of New York was 1825.

In 1831 he was instrumental in the founding of New York University where he worked from the beginning in various offices. 1837 he was appointed professor at the Law School.

Political career

Butler began his political career in 1827 with the election of deputies of the New York State Assembly, where he remained until 1833. Subsequently, he was a short time in New York commission to define the border with New Jersey.

On November 15, 1833 U.S. President Andrew Jackson appointed him as Minister of Justice ( Attorney General ) in his cabinet. This office he held under Jackson's successor, Martin Van Buren until its replacement by Felix Grundy from June 4, 1838. From October 1836 to March 1837, he was also in place of Lewis Cass Secretary of War ad interim.

Following this activity, he was first to 1841 and then again from 1845 to 1848 United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

Butler died during a trip to Europe in Paris. Founded in 1836 Fort Butler in Cherokee County, North Carolina, while the path of tears ( Trail of Tears ) played an important role in the subsequent relocation of the Cherokee, was named after him.


  • " Outlines of the Constitutional History of New York ", New York, 1847