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George Tener Oliver (January 26, 1848 – January 22, 1919) was an American lawyer, publisher, and Republican party politician from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He represented Pennsylvania in the United States Senate from 1909 until 1917.

George Tener Oliver
George Oliver.jpg
United States Senator
from Pennsylvania
In office
March 17, 1909 – March 4, 1917
Preceded byPhilander Knox
Succeeded byPhilander Knox
Personal details
Born(1848-01-26)January 26, 1848
County Tyrone, Ireland
DiedJanuary 22, 1919(1919-01-22) (aged 70)
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Political partyRepublican

Early life, education, and careerEdit

He was born in Dungannon, Ireland while his parents were visiting there.[1] After graduating from Bethany College, West Virginia (B.A., 1868; M.A.,1873) he studied law in an office in Pittsburgh, where he practiced from 1871 to 1881. He then engaged in the iron and steel industry, accumulating a large fortune.[1] In 1900 Oliver separately purchased two Pittsburgh newspapers, the morning Commercial Gazette and evening Chronicle Telegraph, the former of which he merged six years later with The Pittsburg Times to form The Gazette Times.[2]

U.S. SenateEdit

In 1909, he was elected to the U.S. Senate to serve out the term of Philander C. Knox, who had resigned to become Secretary of State under President Taft. In 1911, he notably helped reverse the United States Board on Geographic Names decision to spell the name of the city of Pittsburgh as "Pittsburg" back to the original spelling with the -h ending. Oliver was reelected to a full six-year term starting in 1911. As Senator, he focused on tariff matters affecting the iron and steel industry, the chief employer in Pittsburgh.[3]


Oliver owned a summer estate named Dungannon Hall in Hamilton Twp, Ontario, just north of Cobourg. The sideroad south of the estate was named Oliver's Lane in memory. Although Dungannon Hall was lost to fire in the mid 20th Century, the gates to the estate still stand at the western end of Oliver's Lane next to Ontario Street.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Oliver, George Tener". New International Encyclopedia (Second ed.). New York: Dodd, Mead and Company. 1916.
  2. ^ Fleming, George Thornton, ed. (1916). "Newspapers". Pittsburgh, How to See it. William G. Johnston Company. pp. 169-171.
  3. ^ "Ex-Senator Oliver Dies in Pittsburgh" (PDF). The New York Times. 23 January 1919.
  4. ^ Cruickshank, Tom (Summer 2013). "Cobourg's Gilded Age". Watershed. 13 (49). pp. 26-31.

External linksEdit

United States Congress. "OLIVER, George Tener (id: O000073)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Philander Knox
U.S. Senator (Class 1) from Pennsylvania
Served alongside: Boies Penrose
Succeeded by
Philander Knox