James H. Godman

James Harper Godman (October 19, 1808 – October 4, 1891) was a Republican politician in the U.S. State of Ohio who was a member of the Ohio House of Representatives and Ohio Senate, and was Ohio State Auditor for eight years, (1864–1872). He was also a Union Army soldier in the American Civil War.

James Harper Godman
James Harper Godman.JPG
11th Ohio State Auditor
In office
January 11, 1864 – January 8, 1872
GovernorJohn Brough
Charles Anderson
Jacob Dolson Cox
Rutherford B. Hayes
Preceded byOviatt Cole
Succeeded byJames Williams
Personal details
Born(1808-10-19)October 19, 1808
Berkeley County, Virginia
DiedOctober 4, 1891(1891-10-04) (aged 82)
Marion, Ohio
Resting placeMarion Cemetery
Political partyRepublican
Military service
AllegianceUnited States
Branch/serviceUnion Army
Years of serviceApril 25, 1861-July 28, 1863
RankUnion Army colonel rank insignia.png Colonel
Union Army brigadier general rank insignia.svg Bvt. Brigadier General
Commands4th Ohio Infantry
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War

James H. Godman was born in Berkeley County, Virginia (now West Virginia), and ultimately relocated to Marion, Ohio, where he was admitted to the bar in 1828.[1]

In 1835, Godman was elected to represent Marion and Crawford Counties in the Ohio House of Representatives for the 34th General Assembly,[2] and won again in 1839 for the 38th General Assembly.[3] In 1840 and 1841, he won election to the Ohio Senate for the 39th and 40th General Assemblies.[4]

Godman enlisted April 26, 1861 as a Major in the Union Army during the American Civil War in the 4th Ohio Infantry, promoted to lieutenant colonel January 9, 1862, and to colonel November 29, 1862. He was severely wounded at Fredericksburg and honorably discharged July 28, 1863. March 13, 1865 he received the rank brevet brigadier general.[5] He was elected as a Republican for State Auditor in 1863, and re-elected in 1867, serving eight years.[1]

While a resident of Marion, Godman help attract the first railroad through the town. His family legacy also lives on withnthe establishment of Columbus, Ohio's Godman Guild, a settlement house. The organization is today known as the Godman Guild Association.

Godman died October 4, 1891, and is buried at Marion Cemetery.[6]


  1. ^ a b Smith 1898 : 165
  2. ^ Ohio 1917 : 269
  3. ^ Ohio 1917 : 272
  4. ^ Ohio 1917 : 231
  5. ^ Reid 1895 : 967
  6. ^ James H. Godman at Find a Grave


  • Smith, Joseph P, ed. (1898). History of the Republican Party in Ohio. Vol. I. Chicago: the Lewis Publishing Company.
  • Ohio General Assembly (1917). Manual of legislative practice in the General Assembly. State of Ohio.
  • Reid, Whitelaw (1895). "James H. Godman". Ohio in the War Her Statesmen Generals and Soldiers. Vol. 1. Cincinnati: The Robert Clarke Company. p. 967.