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Hempstead, Charles S. (Hemstead)

Born: 1794-09-10 Hebron, Connecticut

Died: 1874-12-10 Galena, Illinois

Alternate name: Hemstead

Hempstead moved with his brother to St. Louis, Missouri in 1809. He studied law under his brother, earning admittance to the Missouri and Illinois bars in 1814. A year later, Hempstead moved to St. Genevieve, where he began his own practice. He returned to St. Louis in 1817 to take over his brother's practice and won election to the Missouri General Assembly the following year, serving one term. Hempstead traveled in the east from 1830 to 1831, eventually returning west and settling in Galena, Illinois. In January 1834, he married Eliza Barnes, with whom he would have at least two children. The town's senior lawyer, Hempstead took on Elihu B. Washburne as his assistant in 1840. The following year, voters elected him as the town's first mayor and he remained in that office until 1845, when he formed a partnership with Washburne. In 1850, Hempstead was practicing law and owned $29,000 in real property. Hempstead helped negotiate several treaties with Native Americans and was heavily involved in the formation and management of the Galena and Chicago Union Railroad. By 1860, Hempstead had amassed $60,500 in real property, with a personal estate valued at $7,800. During the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln appointed him assistant paymaster. Lincoln also worked on several cases that involved Hempstead. He was a Presbyterian.

The Biographical Encyclopaedia of Illinois of the Nineteenth Century (Philadelphia: Galaxy, 1875), 161-63; Illinois Statewide Marriage Index, Jo Daviess County, 14 January 1834, Illinois State Archives, Springfield, IL; U.S. Census Office, Seventh Census of the United States (1850), Galena, Jo Daviess County, IL, 288; U.S. Census Office, Eighth Census of the United States (1860), Galena, Jo Daviess County, IL, 79; For cases involving Lincoln, search Participant, "Hempstead, Charles S. (Hemstead)," Martha L. Benner and Cullom Davis et al., eds., The Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln: Complete Documentary Edition, 2d edition (Springfield: Illinois Historic Preservation Agency, 2009), http://www.lawpracticeofabrahamlincoln.org.