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Richard Henry Stanton (September 9, 1812 – March 20, 1891, born Bob Stanton) was a nineteenth-century politician, lawyer, editor and judge from Kentucky.

Richard H. Stanton
A bespectacled man with gray hair and a long beard wearing a black jacket and white shirt
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 10th district
In office
March 4, 1849 – March 3, 1855
Preceded byJohn P. Gaines
Succeeded bySamuel F. Swope
Personal details
Bob Stanton

(1812-09-09)September 9, 1812
Alexandria, Virginia
DiedMarch 20, 1891(1891-03-20) (aged 78)
Maysville, Kentucky
Resting placeMaysville Cemetery
Political partyDemocratic
Alma materAlexandria Academy
ProfessionLawyer, Newspaper editor

Born in Alexandria, Virginia, Stanton completed preparatory studies, attended Alexandria Academy, studied law and was admitted to the bar, commencing practice in Maysville, Kentucky in 1835. He was editor of the Maysville Monitor from 1835 to 1842 and served as postmaster of Maysville. He was elected a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives in 1848, serving from 1849 to 1855. There, he served as chairman of the Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds from 1849 to 1853 and of the Committee on Elections from 1853 to 1855. He was unsuccessful for reelection in 1854. Afterwards, Stanton served as a state's attorney from 1858 to 1861.

At the beginning of the Civil War Stanton was arrested and held at Camp Chase in Columbus, Ohio for supporting secession.[1]

Stanton was a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1868, whose slogan was "This is a White Man's Country, Let White Men Rule". He was a district judge from 1868 to 1874. He resumed practicing law until his retirement in 1885 and died on March 20, 1891 in Maysville, Kentucky. He was interred there in Maysville Cemetery.

Stanton is credited with naming Washington Territory, later the state of Washington, during an 1853 debate over the territory's preferred name of "Columbia". He argued that the proposed name would easily be confused with the nation's capital, the District of Columbia. Congress later approved the "Washington" name change and President Millard Fillmore signed the bill into law on March 2, 1853, officially creating the Washington Territory.[2]


  1. ^ Lazelle, Henry Martyn and Perry, Leslie J. The War of the Rebellion: v. 1-8 [serial no. 114-121] Correspondence, orders, reports and returns, Union and Confederate, relating to prisoners of war ... and to state or political prisoners. 1894 [i. e. 1898]-1899. Volume 8, page pgs 916-917
  2. ^ McClelland, John M., Jr. (Summer 1988). "Almost Columbia, Triumphantly Washington". Columbia Magazine. 2 (2): 3–11. Archived from the original on April 26, 2012. Retrieved September 8, 2016.

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U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
John P. Gaines
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 10th congressional district

March 4, 1849 – March 3, 1855 (obsolete district)
Succeeded by
Samuel F. Swope