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Richard Brodhead (January 5, 1811 – September 16, 1863) was an American lawyer and politician from Easton, Pennsylvania. He represented Pennsylvania in both the U.S. House and Senate. He was the father of U.S. Representative Jefferson Davis Brodhead.

Richard Brodhead
Richard Brodhead (US Senator from Pennsylvania).jpg
From 1856's Portraits of United States Senators with a Biographical Sketch of Each
United States Senator
from Pennsylvania
In office
March 4, 1851 – March 3, 1857
Preceded byDaniel Sturgeon
Succeeded bySimon Cameron
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Pennsylvania's 10th district
In office
March 4, 1843 – March 3, 1849
Preceded byWilliam Simonton
Succeeded byMilo M. Dimmick
Member of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Born(1811-01-05)January 5, 1811
Lehman Township, Pennsylvania
DiedSeptember 16, 1863(1863-09-16) (aged 52)
Easton, Pennsylvania
Political partyDemocratic


Richard Brodhead was born in Lehman Township, Pennsylvania, the son of Hannah (Drake) and Richard Brodhead, Sr. Brodhead moved to Easton, Pennsylvania in 1830. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1836 and commenced practice in Easton. He was a member of the Pennsylvania State House of Representatives from 1837 to 1839. He was appointed treasurer of Northampton County, Pennsylvania in 1841. His wife was Mary Jane Davis Bradford, a niece of Jefferson Davis of Mississippi.

Brodhead was elected as a Democrat to the Twenty-eighth, Twenty-ninth, and Thirtieth Congresses. He served as chairman of the United States House Committee on Revolutionary Pensions during the Twenty-ninth Congress. He was not a candidate for renomination in 1848.

Brodhead was elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate. He served as chairman of the United States Senate Committee on Claims during the Thirty-second and Thirty-third Congresses. and the United States Senate Committee on Revolutionary Claims during Thirty-second Congress. He died in Easton in 1863. Interment in Easton Cemetery.


He was the most recent resident of the Lehigh Valley area to serve as United States Senator from Pennsylvania until the election of incumbent Pat Toomey in 2010.[1]


  1. ^ "Toomey Triumphs". Archived from the original on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 14 August 2011.

Commemorative Biographical Record of Northeastern Pennsylvania, including the Counties of Susquehanna, Wayne, Pike and Monroe (Chicago: J. H. Beers, 1900), 80-1; Papers of Jefferson Davis 1:520-1; 1:279, n20.

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