Ferry, Elisha P.

Born: 1825-08-09 Monroe, Michigan

Died: 1895-10-14 Seattle, Washington

Elisha P. Ferry was an attorney, mayor, governor, and lifelong public servant. After studying law in Fort Wayne, Indiana and gaining admittance to the bar in 1845, he moved to Little Fort, Illinois, where he began practicing law in 1846. In January 1849, he married Sarah B. Kellogg, with whom he had at least six children. In April 1853, he received appointment as postmaster for Waukegan, Illinois. Although originally a Democrat, in 1856 he left the party and became a Republican, serving as an elector for John C. Fremont in the presidential election of 1856. His career as a public servant accelerated in the years leading up to the Civil War. In 1859, he was elected Waukegan's first mayor. In 1861, he was a member of the Illinois State Constitutional Convention and was also bank commissioner for Illinois from 1861 to 1863. During the Civil War, he served as an assistant adjutant general and colonel under Governor Richard Yates, helping equip Illinois regiments for war.

Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Lake County, 25 January 1849, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; Record of Appointment of Postmasters, 1832-1971, NARA Microfilm Publication, M841, 145 rolls, Records of the Post Office Department, RG 28, 1845-1855, 18:102, National Archives Building, Washington, DC; John J. Halsey, ed., A History of Lake County Illinois (Chicago: Harmegnies and Howell, 1912), 559; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Waukegan, Lake County, IL, 136; U.S. Census Office, Ninth Census of the United States (1870), Olympia, Thurston County, Washington Territory, 3; Gravestone, Lake View Cemetery, Seattle, WA.