John Thomson Mason

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John Thomson Mason (15 March 1765 – 10 December 1824)[1][2] was an American lawyer and Attorney General of Maryland in 1806.[2]

John Thomson Mason
Attorney General of Maryland
In office
GovernorRobert Bowie
Preceded byWilliam Pinkney
Succeeded byJohn Johnson Sr.
Personal details
Born(1765-03-15)15 March 1765
Chopawamsic, Stafford County, Colony of Virginia
Died10 December 1824(1824-12-10) (aged 59)
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Beltzhoover
Children7, including John Thomson Mason Jr.
ResidenceMontpelier, Clear Spring, Maryland

Early lifeEdit

Mason was born on 15 March 1765 at Chopawamsic in Stafford County, Virginia.[1][2] He was the third child and youngest son of Thomson Mason and his wife Mary King Barnes.[1]

Education and careerEdit

Mason attained high rank at the bar,[3] but twice declined the office of United States Attorney General when it was offered by Presidents Thomas Jefferson and James Madison.[3] Mason ran for one of Maryland's seats in the United States Senate, but lost.[3] He then served as Attorney General of Maryland in 1806.[2]

Marriages and childrenEdit

Elizabeth Beltzhoover Mason, painted by Gilbert Stuart

Mason married Elizabeth Beltzhoover in 1797.[1][2] He and Elizabeth had seven children:[1][2]

  • Mary Barnes Mason Winter (c. 1800–11 May 1844)[1]
  • Elizabeth Ann Armistead Thomson Mason Wharton (4 April 1803–20 January 1857)[1]
  • Abram Barnes Mason Barnes (21 October 1807–10 April 1863)[1]
  • Melchior Beltzhoover Mason (born 3 October 1812)[1]
  • John Thomson Mason, Jr. (9 May 1815–28 March 1873)[1]
  • Thomson Mason (15 July 1818–1848)[1]
  • Virginia Wallace Mason (16 April 1820–6 October 1858)[1]

Later lifeEdit

Mason died on 10 December 1824 at the age of 59.[1] Mason was interred at his Montpelier estate in Clear Spring, Maryland.[4]


John Thomson Mason was a nephew of George Mason (1725–1792);[1] son of Thomson Mason (1733–1785);[1] brother of Stevens Thomson Mason (1760–1803);[1] half-brother of William Temple Thomson Mason (1782–1862);[1] first cousin of George Mason V (1753–1796);[1] first cousin once removed of Thomson Francis Mason (1785–1838), George Mason VI (1786–1834), Richard Barnes Mason (1797–1850), and James Murray Mason (1798–1871);[1] uncle of Armistead Thomson Mason (1787–1819) and John Thomson Mason (1787–1850);[1] father of John Thomson Mason Jr. (1815–1873);[1] and great uncle of Stevens Thomson Mason (1811–1843).[1]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v Gunston Hall. "John Thomson Mason". Gunston Hall. Archived from the original on 11 February 2008. Retrieved 15 February 2008.
  2. ^ a b c d e f The Political Graveyard (16 June 2008). "Mason family of Virginia". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved 7 March 2009.
  3. ^ a b c The Colonial Dames of America (1910). Ancestral Records and Portraits: A Compilation from the Archives of Chapter I, the Colonial Dames of America. Boston, Massachusetts: Grafton Press. p. 808.
  4. ^ Federal Writers' Project. Maryland: A Guide to the Old Line State. US History Publishers. ISBN 1-60354-019-9.
Legal offices
Preceded by
William Pinkney
Attorney General of Maryland
Succeeded by
John Johnson Sr.