Carpenter, Milton

Born: 1808-XX-XX Kentucky

Died: 1848-08-13 Springfield, Illinois

Carpenter migrated in 1820 from Barren County, Kentucky with his father, Chester Carpenter, a famous primitive Baptist preacher, to what would become McLeansboro in Hamilton County, Illinois. Tasked with establishing Baptist churches in southern Illinois, Chester Carpenter often brought his only child, Milton, with him while traveling throughout the area. In 1825, Milton Carpenter married Fanny Dale, with whom he had nine children. Received as the pastor of the Ten Mile Baptist Church in 1828, Carpenter served as elder and pastor of this church for the remainder of his life. Carpenter enlisted as a private in the Hamilton County volunteers in the Black Hawk War. After he returned to his farm and pulpit, voters elected him to represent Hamilton County in the Illinois House of Representatives from 1834-1841, where he served primarily on the banks, and public accounts and expenditures committees. Carpenter accepted an appointment as U.S. Land Office Commissioner for Hamilton County in 1836, and served on the Illinois state Democratic committee from 1839-41. In 1841, in the middle of his fourth term as representative, fellow house members elected him to a two-year term as state treasurer. In 1842, he married Elena Lanterman in Springfield, Illinois. Reelected in 1844, Carpenter died unexpectedly within a month of being elected to his third term as state treasurer, this time by voters rather than the legislature. Taking over at a time when the state's debt posed a significant obstacle and within a few months of the failure of the State Bank of Illinois, Carpenter earned the respect of both Whigs and Democrats, being elected state treasurer twice by unanimous acclamation.

Newton Bateman, et. al., Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois. Vol. I (Chicago: Munsell, 1921), 188, 267, 506; Blue Book of the State of Illinois (Springfield: Phillips Brothers, State Printers, 1919), 493, 529-32; Newton Bateman, Biographical and Memorial Edition of the Historical Encyclopedia of Illinois, Vol. I (Chicago: Munsell, 1915), 79-80; Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Sangamon County, 29 June 1842, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; Illinois Journal (Springfield), 16 August 1848, 3:1.