David M. Key

David McKendree Key ( born January 27, 1824 in Greeneville, Tennessee, † February 3, 1900 in Chattanooga, Tennessee) was an American politician who belonged to the office of Republican U.S. President Rutherford B. Hayes as Postmaster General.

David Key, the son of a clergyman in Greene County, was still a small child, when his family moved to Monroe County, where he grew up. He attended Hiwassee College in Madisonville and graduated in 1850. Later that year he was admitted to the Bar Association. He subsequently worked as a lawyer in Madisonville and Kingston, before he settled in 1853 in Chattanooga. In 1857 he married Elizabeth Lenoir, with whom he had nine children.

At the outbreak of the Civil War Key joined the Konföderiertenheer and served in the 43rd Infantry Regiment of Tennessee. After the war, he left the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel and worked until 1868 as a lawyer again.

1870 Key belonged to the State Constitutional Convention of 1870, which created the still valid constitution of Tennessee. In the same year he was elected Judge of the Court of chancery of the county Chattanooga. He held that office even as he tried unsuccessfully in 1872 to win a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. It was not until 1875 he was the policy preference and resigned as a judge after him Governor James Porter was appointed as the successor of the late former U.S. President Andrew Johnson in the U.S. Senate. Already in the next election by the Tennessee General Assembly in 1877, he was forced to cede the Senate seat again.

However, he continued to be politically active in Washington. Also still in 1877 he was appointed President Hayes as Postmaster General in his cabinet, where he remained until 25 August 1880. His nomination was a result of the Compromise of 1877, according to which the influence of the Democratic Party should be observed even in the Republican-dominated cabinets. Later, he accepted the call to the judge at the Federal District Court for the Eastern and Middle Tennessee.