Nelson W. Aldrich

Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich (/ˈɔːldrɪk/; November 6, 1841 – April 16, 1915) was a prominent American politician and a leader of the Republican Party in the United States Senate, where he served from 1881 to 1911. By the 1890s he was one of the "Big Four" key Republicans who largely controlled the major decisions of the Senate, along with Orville H. Platt, William B. Allison and John Coit Spooner.[1] Because of his impact on national politics and central position on the pivotal Senate Finance Committee, he was referred to by the press and public alike as the "General Manager of the Nation", dominating tariff and monetary policy in the first decade of the 20th century.

Born in Foster, Rhode Island, Aldrich served in the Union Army during the American Civil War. After the war, he became a partner in a large wholesale grocery firm and won election to the Rhode Island House of Representatives. He served a single term in the United States House of Representatives before winning election to the Senate. In the Senate, he helped to create an extensive system of tariffs that protected American factories and farms from foreign competition, and he was a cosponsor of the Payne–Aldrich Tariff Act. He also helped win Senate approval of the 1898 Treaty of Paris, which ended the Spanish–American War.

Aldrich led the passage of the Aldrich–Vreeland Act, which established the National Monetary Commission to study the causes of the Panic of 1907. He served as chair of that commission, which drew up the Aldrich Plan as a basis for a reform of the financial regulatory system. The Aldrich Plan strongly influenced the Federal Reserve Act of 1913, which established the Federal Reserve System. Aldrich also sponsored the Sixteenth Amendment, which allowed for a direct federal income tax.

Deeply committed to the efficiency model of the Progressive Era, he believed that his financial and trade policies would lead to greater efficiency. Reformers, however, denounced him as representative of the evils of big business. His daughter Abigail married into the Rockefeller family, and his descendants, including namesake Nelson A. Rockefeller, became powerful figures in American politics and banking.[2]

Nelson W. Aldrich
Nelson W. Aldrich 1841–1915
United States Senator
from Rhode Island
In office
October 5, 1881 – March 3, 1911
Preceded byAmbrose Burnside
Succeeded byHenry F. Lippitt
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Rhode Island's 1st district
In office
March 4, 1879 – October 4, 1881
Preceded byBenjamin T. Eames
Succeeded byHenry J. Spooner
Member of the Rhode Island House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Nelson Wilmarth Aldrich

November 6, 1841
Foster, Rhode Island
DiedApril 16, 1915 (aged 73)
New York, New York
Resting placeSwan Point Cemetery
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Abigail Pearce Truman Chapman
(m. 1866)
ChildrenLucy, Abby, Richard, Winthrop, and Edward
Alma materEast Greenwich Academy

Family background

Aldrich was born in Foster, Rhode Island, into a middle-class family descended from noted English immigrants John Winthrop, William Wickenden, and Roger Williams.[3] His branch passed through generations of declining circumstances. His father was Anan E. Aldrich, a mill hand, and mother Abby Burgess. He attended public schools in East Killingly, Connecticut and the East Greenwich Academy, a boarding school in Rhode Island.[4]

Early career

Abigail Pearce Truman Chapman
Abigail Pearce Truman Chapman

Aldrich's first job was clerking for the largest wholesale grocer in the state, where he worked his way up to become a partner in the firm.

He served briefly in the Union Army during the American Civil War when he enlisted as a private in Company D of the 10th Rhode Island Infantry on May 26, 1862. Aldrich's company served for three months at Fort DeRussy, which was part of the defenses of Washington, D.C.. Aldrich was mustered out of service with the regiment on September 1, 1862.[5]

On October 9, 1866, he married Abigail Pearce Truman "Abby" Chapman, a wealthy woman with impressive antecedents. They had a total of eleven children.

Early political career

By 1877, Nelson had a major effect on state politics, even before his election to the United States Congress.[6] He served as a member of the Providence City Council from 1869 to 1874 and as its president in 1872 and 1873. He served in the Rhode Island House of Representatives in 1875 and 1876 and served as Speaker of the House in 1876.

U.S. Senate

In 1878 the Republican bosses of Rhode Island endorsed him for the US House of Representatives; he won and served one term, 1879 to 1881. In 1881 he was elected to the U.S. Senate by the Rhode Island legislature. He served in the Senate for 30 years from 1881 to 1911. He was the longest serving United States Senator from Rhode Island before the 36-year tenure of Claiborne Pell in the late 20th Century.

By the 1890s, he was one of the "Big Four" key Republicans who largely controlled the major decisions of the Senate, along with Orville H. Platt of Connecticut, William B. Allison of Iowa and John Coit Spooner of Wisconsin. Aldrich's main power base was his chairmanship of the Senate Finance Committee which oversaw bank regulation and monetary policy.[7]

In 1906 Aldrich sold his interest in the Rhode Island street railway system to the New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad, whose president, Charles Sanger Mellen, was Wall Street banker J. P. Morgan's loyal ally.

National finance

Puck cartoon of Senator Nelson Aldrich 1906
Reformers hated and feared Senator Aldrich for killing reforms disliked by big business. 1906 Puck cartoon.

The panic of 1907 led to the passage of the Aldrich–Vreeland Act in 1908, which established the National Monetary Commission, sponsored and headed by Aldrich. After issuing a series of 30 reports, this commission drew up the Aldrich Plan, forming the basis for the Federal Reserve system.

As co-author of the Payne-Aldrich Tariff Act of 1909, Aldrich removed restrictive import duties on fine art, which enabled Americans to bring in very expensive European artworks that became the foundation of many leading museums.

In 1909, Aldrich introduced a constitutional amendment to establish an income tax, although he had declared a similar measure "communistic" a decade earlier. Aldrich was quite candid about his scheme to block the House bill that had been passed, declaring to the Senate: "I shall vote for the corporation tax as a means to defeat the income tax."[8]

The compromise passed unanimously in the Senate and by a vote of 318 to 14 in the House. The corporate excise tax would be levied, and the income-tax constitutional amendment would be sent out to the states for ratification—which Taft and Aldrich thought was impossible.

1909 editorial cartoon mocking William Howard Taft, Nelson W. Aldrich, and Joseph Gurney Cannon (Des Moines Register and Leader)
Taft tries to get progressive ideas into Aldrich

Aldrich also served as chairman of the Senate Republican Conference. During his Senate tenure he chaired the committees on Finance, Transportation Routes to the Seaboard, Rules, and the Select Committee on Corporations Organized in the District of Columbia.

Federal Reserve Act

Following the Panic of 1907, Aldrich took control as chairman of the Congressionally established National Monetary Commission. A proponent of Progressive Era themes of Efficiency and scientific expertise, he led a team of experts to study the European national banks. After his trip, he came to believe that Britain, Germany and France had much superior central banking systems.[9] He worked with several key bankers and economists, including Paul Warburg, Abram Andrew and Henry Davison, to design a plan for an American central bank in 1911. In 1913 Woodrow Wilson signed into law the Federal Reserve Act patterned after Aldrich's vision, creating the modern Federal Reserve System.

Foreign affairs

Aldrich opposed entry into the Spanish–American War, but supported McKinley when it began. He played a central role in winning two-thirds Senate approval of the Treaty of Paris that ended the war, and included annexation of the Philippines.[10] He helped frame the Platt Amendment of 1901, which limited the American role in Cuba. He supported the Panama Canal, but was critical of Roosevelt's general Caribbean policy.[11] In 1906 Aldrich and other American financiers invested heavily in mines and rubber in the Belgian Congo. They supported Belgium's King Leopold II, who had imposed very harsh labor conditions in the colony.[12]

Family prominence

His daughter Abigail Greene "Abby" Aldrich was a philanthropist[13] who married philanthropist John Davison Rockefeller, Jr.,[14] and their second son Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller was a four-term Governor of New York who campaigned for the Republican presidential nomination in 1960, 1964, and 1968, and was named Vice President of the United States under President Gerald Ford by the Congress in 1974.[15] Aldrich's son Richard S. Aldrich served in Congress from 1923 to 1933,[16] and his son Winthrop Williams Aldrich served as chairman of the Chase National Bank.[17] American film director, writer and producer, Robert Aldrich was his grandson.


Portrait of Nelson Aldrich
Portrait of Senator Aldrich

Aldrich was very active in the Freemasons and was Treasurer of the Grand Lodge of Rhode Island.

Aldrich developed an elaborate country estate in the Warwick Neck section of Warwick, Rhode Island. The estate is now owned by the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rhode Island.

Death and burial

He died on April 16, 1915, in New York City, and was buried in Swan Point Cemetery in Providence, Rhode Island.


The Nelson W. Aldrich House on 110 Benevolent Street in Providence serves as the headquarters for the Rhode Island Historical Society.

The Aldrich Middle School in Warwick, Rhode Island is named in his honor.

Aldrich Residence Hall at The University of Rhode Island in Kingston, RI is named in his honor.

Aldrich Hall at Harvard Business School in Boston, MA was made possible through a gift from John D. Rockefeller and is named in honor of his father-in-law, Nelson W. Aldrich.

Congressional committee assignments

Committee Congresses Notes
House District of Columbia 46
Senate District of Columbia 47-48
Education and Labor 47-48
Finance 47-61 Chairman (55-61)
Steel Producing Capacity of the United States (Select) 48-49
Transportation Routes to the Seaboard 48-55 Chairman (48-49)
Pensions 49
Examine the Several Branches of the Civil Service 50-51
Rules 50-61 Chairman (50-52; 54; 55)
Corporations Organized in the District of Columbia 53-60 Chairman of the Select Committee, (53)
Revolutionary Claims 53-54
Interstate Commerce 54-61
Cuban Relations 56-60
Industrial Expositions 59-60
Public Expenditures 61


  1. ^ Lewis Gould, The Most Exclusive Club: A History of the Modern United States Senate (2009) pp 17-31
  2. ^ Sternstein, "Aldrich, Nelson Wilmarth" (1974).
  3. ^ William G. McLoughlin, Rhode Island, a History, (W.W. Norton & Co. 1986), 149 [1]
  4. ^ U.S. Congressional bioguide
  5. ^
  6. ^ Bernice Kert, Abby Aldrich Rockefeller: The Woman in the Family, 1993, p. 17
  7. ^ Lewis Gould, The Most Exclusive Club: A History of the Modern United States Senate (2009) pp 17-31
  8. ^ Sternstein, "Aldrich, Nelson Wilmarth" (1974).
  9. ^ Europe and Central Banks, New York Times, January 9, 1910, Annual Financial Review, pg 8.
  10. ^ Paolo E. Coletta, "Bryan, McKinley, and the Treaty of Paris," Pacific Historical Review (1957) 26#2 pp. 131-146 in JSTOR
  11. ^ Sternstein, "Aldrich, Nelson Wilmarth" (1974).
  12. ^ Jerome L. Sternstein, "King Leopold II, Senator Nelson W. Aldrich, and the Strange Beginnings of American Economic Penetration of the Congo," African Historical Studies, Vol. 2, No. 2 (1969), pp. 189-204
  13. ^ "Abby Greene Aldrich Rockefeller, 1874-1948". Rockefeller Archive Center. Retrieved April 7, 2014.
  14. ^ "Abby John D. Rockefeller, 1874-1960". Rockefeller Archive Center. Retrieved April 7, 2014.
  15. ^ "Rockefeller Family Archives". Rockefeller Archive Center. Retrieved April 7, 2014.
  16. ^ "ALDRICH, Richard Steere, (1884 - 1941)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved April 7, 2014.
  17. ^ Lowe, T. (1916). National Courier, Volume 7, Issue 35. T. Lowe. p. 13.

Further reading

  • Aldrich Jr., Nelson W., Old Money: The Mythology of America's Upper Class, Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. 1988. justification by a descendant
  • Gould, Lewis. The Most Exclusive Club: A History of the Modern United States Senate (2009) pp 17–31
  • Kert, Bernice. Abby Aldrich Rockefeller: The Woman in the Family. New York: Random House, 1993.
  • Phillips, David Graham, "The Treason of the Senate: Aldrich, The Head of It All," Cosmopolitan, March 1906. online, by a muckraker
  • Steffens, Lincoln, "Rhode Island: A State For Sale," McClure's Magazine, February 1904, 337 - 353, by a muckraker
  • Stephenson, Nathaniel W. Nelson W. Aldrich: A Leader In American Politics. 1930. Scholarly biography
  • Sternstein, Jerome L. "Aldrich, Nelson Wilmarth." in John A. Garraty, ed. Encyclopedia of American Biography (1974) pp 25–27
  • Sternstein, Jerome L. "Corruption in the Gilded Age Senate: Nelson W. Aldrich and the Sugar Trust," Capitol Studies 6 (Spring 1978): pp. 13–37. online
  • Sternstein, Jerome L. "King Leopold II, Senator Nelson W. Aldrich, and the Strange Beginnings of American Economic Penetration of the Congo," African Historical Studies in JSTOR
  • Wicker, Elmus. The Great Debate on Banking Reform: Nelson Aldrich and the Origins of the Fed, Ohio State University Press, 2005.
  • Selections from the Nelson W. Aldrich Papers at the Library of Congress, particularly pertaining to his work with the National Monetary Commission

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Benjamin T. Eames
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives for Rhode Island's 1st district
March 4, 1879 – October 4, 1881
Succeeded by
Henry J. Spooner
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
Ambrose Burnside
U.S. Senator (Class 1) from Rhode Island
October 5, 1881 – March 3, 1911
Served alongside: Henry B. Anthony, William P. Sheffield, Jonathan Chace, Nathan F. Dixon, George Peabody Wetmore
Succeeded by
Henry F. Lippitt
Legal offices
Preceded by
Justin Morrill
Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Finance
Succeeded by
Boies Penrose
Aldrich (surname)

Aldrich is an Old English surname. Notable persons with that surname include:

Abby Aldrich (1874–1948), American philanthropist

Allison Aldrich (born 1988), American Paralympic volleyball player

Ann Aldrich (1927–2010), American federal judge

Bailey Aldrich (1907–2002), American judge

Bess Streeter Aldrich (1881–1954), American author

Charles H. Aldrich (1850–1929), former Solicitor General of the United States

Charlie Aldrich (born 1918), American musician

Chester Hardy Aldrich (1862–1924), American politician from Nebraska

Chester Holmes Aldrich (1871–1940), American architect

Clark Aldrich, American author

Cole Aldrich (born 1988), American basketball player

Cyrus Aldrich (1808–1871), American politician

Daniel Aldrich (1918–1990), American educator

David Aldrich (1907–2002), American artist

David E. Aldrich (born 1963), American cinematographer

Doug Aldrich (born 1964), American guitarist

Edgar Aldrich (1848–1921), American judge

Erin Aldrich (born 1977), American athlete

Fred Aldrich (1904–1979), American actor

Frederick Aldrich (1907–2002), American marine biologist

Gary Aldrich (born 1945), former American FBI agent

Hazen Aldrich (1797–1873), American religious figure

Henry Aldrich (1647–1710), English theologian and philosopher

Henry Carl Aldrich (1941–2005), American mycologist

Herman D. Aldrich (1801-1880), American businessman.

Howard E. Aldrich (b. 1940s), American sociologist

J. Frank Aldrich (1853–1933), American politician

James Aldrich (1810–1856), American editor and poet

James Aldrich (politician) (1850–1910), American judge and politician from South Carolina

Janet Aldrich, American actress and singer

Jay Aldrich (born 1961), American baseball player

Jeremy Aldrich (born 1977), American soccer player

John Aldrich (political scientist) (born 1947), American political scientist

John Aldrich (MP) (1520–1582), British Member of Parliament

John Merton Aldrich (1866–1934), zoologist and entomologist

John Warren Aldrich (1906–1995), American ornithologist

Julia Carter Aldrich (1834-1924), American author

Kate Aldrich (born 1973), American singer

Ki Aldrich (1916–1983), American football player

Larry Aldrich (1906–2001), American fashion designer

Lloyd Aldrich (1886–1967), American engineer

Louis Aldrich (1843–1901), American actor

Loyal Blaine Aldrich (1884–1965), American astronomer

Lucy Aldrich (1869–1955), American philanthropist

Mal Aldrich (1900–1986), American football player

Mariska Aldrich (1881–1965), American singer and actress

Mark Aldrich (1802–1873), American politician and mayor

Michael Aldrich (1941–2014), English inventor and entrepreneur

Mildred Aldrich (1853–1928), American journalist and writer

Nelson W. Aldrich (1841–1915), American politician from Rhode Island

Nelson W. Aldrich Jr. (born 1935), American editor and author

Pelham Aldrich (1844–1930), English Royal Navy officer and explorer

Pieter Aldrich (born 1965), South African tennis player

Putnam Aldrich (1904–1975), American musician and professor

Richard Aldrich (music critic) (1863–1937), American music critic

Richard Aldrich (artist) (born 1975), American painter

Richard S. Aldrich (1884–1941), American lawyer and politician

Richard W. Aldrich, American neuroscientist

Robert Aldrich (1918–1983), American film director

Robert Aldrich (bishop), Anglican bishop

Robert Aldrich (historian), Australian historian and writer

Ronnie Aldrich (1916–1993), British musician

Sarah Aldrich (born 1970), American actress

Stephen Aldrich (born 1941), American judge

Susannah Valentine Aldrich (1828-1915), American author, hymnwriter

Thomas A. Aldrich (born 1923), American soldier and major general

Thomas Bailey Aldrich (1836–1907), American writer

Truman H. Aldrich (1848–1932), American engineer and paleontologist

Virgil Aldrich (1903–1998), Indian–American philosopher

William Aldrich (1820–1885), American politician and representative

William F. Aldrich (1853–1925), American politician and representative

Winthrop W. Aldrich (1885–1974), American financier

Aldrich–Vreeland Act

The Aldrich–Vreeland Act was passed in response to the Panic of 1907 and established the National Monetary Commission, which recommended the Federal Reserve Act of 1913.

On May 27, 1908, the bill passed the House on a mostly party-line vote of 166–140, with 13 Republicans voting against it and no Democrats voting for it. On May 30, it passed in the Senate with 43 Republicans in favor and five Republicans joining 17 Democrats opposed. President Roosevelt signed the bill that same night.The act also allowed national banks to start national currency associations in groups of ten or more, with at least $5 million in total capital, to issue emergency currency. These bank notes were to be backed by not just government bonds but also just about any securities the banks were holding. The act proposed that this emergency currency had to go through a process of approval by the officers of these national currency associations and then distributed by the Comptroller of the Currency.

However, it is possible that because there was a 5 percent tax placed on this emergency currency for the first month it was "outstanding" and a 1 percent increase for the following months it was "outstanding," no bank notes were issued. Another possible explanation that the emergency currency was never issued might have been that it was unnecessary.Congress modified and extended the law in 1914 when British and other foreign creditors demanded immediate payments, in gold, of amounts which would ordinarily have been carried over and paid through exports of commodities.

Senator Nelson W. Aldrich (R-RI) was largely responsible for the Aldrich-Vreeland Currency Law and became the Chairman of the National Monetary commission. The co-sponsor of the legislation was Rep. Edward Vreeland, a Republican from New York.

A usage of the law occurred at the outbreak of the World War I in 1914 when the first great financial panic of the 20th century befell the world, necessitating the closure of the New York Stock Exchange. Secretary of the Treasury William Gibbs McAdoo appeared in New York City and assured the public that ample stocks of emergency banknotes had been prepared in accordance with the Aldrich–Vreeland Act and were available for issue to the banks. As of October 23, 1914, $368,616,990 was outstanding.

The Federal Reserve Act of December 23, 1913, took effect in November 1914 when the 12 regional banks opened for business. Ultimately the emergency currency issued under the Aldrich-Vreeland Law was entirely withdrawn.

Henry J. Spooner

Henry Joshua Spooner (August 6, 1839 – February 9, 1918), was a United States Representative from Rhode Island.

Born in Providence, Rhode Island, Spooner attended the common schools and graduated from Brown University in 1860. During his undergraduate career Spooner became a member of Theta Delta Chi. After graduation, he studied law before entering the Union Army in 1862 as second lieutenant in the Fourth Regiment, Rhode Island Volunteer Infantry. He served in the Army of the Potomac and the Army of the James, mostly in the XVIII Corps.

Indian Oaks

Indian Oaks, once the Senator Nelson W. Aldrich Estate, is an historic country estate at 836 Warwick Neck Avenue in Warwick, Rhode Island. The extensive estate was developed in 1899 by Nelson W. Aldrich (1841-1915), a Republican Party politician who dominated state politics of the period. The main estate house is a sprawling stone French Renaissance structure with lavish interior decoration. The estate's surviving outbuildings include a boathouse and a caretaker's house, the latter located across Warwick Neck Avenue from the main estate. Aldrich's heirs sold the property to the Roman Catholic church in 1939, and it was adapted for use as a seminary. It now serves as the main campus of the Overbrook Academy, a Catholic girls' school. The property now known as "The Aldrich Mansion" still belongs to the Diocese of Providence, and is now available as a site for weddings, formal occasions, business conferences, etc. It is also occasionally used for film and television productions.

The estate was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.

John Coit Spooner

John Coit Spooner (January 6, 1843 – June 11, 1919) was a politician and lawyer from Wisconsin. He served in the United States Senate from 1885 to 1891 and from 1897 to 1907. A Republican, by the 1890s, he was one of the "Big Four" key Republicans who largely controlled the major decisions of the Senate, along with Orville H. Platt of Connecticut, William B. Allison of Iowa and Nelson W. Aldrich of Rhode Island. He chaired the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Lucy Aldrich

Lucy Truman Aldrich (October 23, 1869 – January 12, 1955) was a philanthropist and art collector who was the eldest daughter of U.S. Senator Nelson W. Aldrich of Rhode Island.

Nelson W. Aldrich House

The Nelson W. Aldrich House, also known as the Dr. S. B. Tobey House, is a Federal-style house at 110 Benevolent Street in Providence, Rhode Island that was the home of Nelson W. Aldrich, a U.S. Senator from 1881 to 1911. Aldrich was a dominant and controversial figure in the Senate, exercising significant control over the legislative process. This house, one of two surviving properties associated with Aldrich, was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1976. It is now a house museum operated by the Rhode Island Historical Society.

Nelson W. Aldrich Jr.

Nelson W. Aldrich Jr. (born 1935) is an American editor and the author of Old Money: The mythology of Wealth in America (Alfred A. Knopf, 1988; Allworth Press, 1996) and George, Being George (Random House, 2008), the story of author and socialite George Plimpton told via first hand accounts of many who knew him. Aldrich attended the Fay School, St. Paul's School (New Hampshire), and Harvard College. Aldrich was at one time the Paris editor of The Paris Review and is a frequent contributor to publications such as Vogue and Harper's. He is a great-grandson of Nelson W. Aldrich who was a leader of the Republican Party in the Senate and fundamental in the founding of the Federal Reserve banking system in the United States.

Orville H. Platt

Orville Hitchcock Platt (July 19, 1827 – April 21, 1905) was a United States Senator from Connecticut. Platt was a prominent conservative Republican and by the 1890s he became one of the "big four" key Republicans who largely controlled the major decisions of the Senate, along with William B. Allison of Iowa, John Coit Spooner of Wisconsin and Nelson W. Aldrich of Rhode Island.

Payne–Aldrich Tariff Act

The Payne–Aldrich Tariff Act of 1909 (ch. 6, 36 Stat. 11), named for Representative Sereno E. Payne (R–NY) and Senator Nelson W. Aldrich (R–RI), began in the United States House of Representatives as a bill raising certain tariffs on goods entering the United States. The high rates angered Republican reformers, and led to a deep split in the Republican Party.

Rhode Island Historical Society

The Rhode Island Historical Society is a privately endowed membership organization, founded in 1822, dedicated to collecting, preserving, and sharing the history of Rhode Island. Its offices are located in Providence, Rhode Island.

Richard S. Aldrich

Richard Steere Aldrich (February 29, 1884 – December 25, 1941) was an American lawyer and politician. He was a Republican member of the U.S. House of Representatives, and served in the Rhode Island State Senate and the Rhode Island House of Representatives.

Rockefeller-Aldrich family political line

George Aldrich (1605-1683), an immigrant from England, settled in Mendon, Massachusetts Bay Colony, in the mid 17th century.

William Aldrich (1820-1885), U.S. Representative from Illinois 1877-1883, Wisconsin Assemblyman 1859. Cousin of Nelson W. Aldrich.James Franklin Aldrich (1853-1933), U.S. Representative from Illinois 1893-1897. Son of William Aldrich.

Nelson W. Aldrich (1841-1915), U.S. Senator from Rhode Island 1881-1911. (Chairman of Senate Finance Committee), U.S. Representative from Rhode Island 1879-1881, Rhode Island State Representative 1875-1877, Cousin of William Aldrich.Richard S. Aldrich (1884-1941), Rhode Island State Representative 1915-1916, Rhodes Island State Senator 1917-1918, U.S. Representative from Rhode Island 1923-1933, delegate to the Republican National Convention 1924. Son of Nelson W. Aldrich.

Winthrop W. Aldrich (1885-1974), U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain 1953-1957. Son of Nelson W. Aldrich.Nelson Aldrich Rockefeller (1908-1979), Vice President of the United States 1974-1977. Governor of New York 1959-1973, delegate to the Republican National Convention 1960 1964, candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States 1960 1964 1968 1976, Nephew of Richard S. Aldrich and Winthrop W. Aldrich.

Winthrop Rockefeller (1912-1973), Republican National Committeeman 1961, delegate to the Republican National Convention 1964, candidate for Governor of Arkansas 1964, Governor of Arkansas 1967-1971, candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States 1968. Nephew of Richard S. Aldrich and Winthrop W. Aldrich.

Richard S. Aldrich, candidate for U.S. Representative from New York 1962, New York City Councilman. Son of Richard S. Aldrich.

Charles H. Percy (September 27, 1919 – September 17, 2011), delegate to the Republican National Convention 1960, candidate for Governor of Illinois 1964, U.S. Senator from Illinois 1967-1985, candidate for the Republican nomination for President of the United States 1968 1976. Father-in-law of John D. Rockefeller IV.John D. Rockefeller IV (1937-), West Virginia House Delegate 1967-1968, West Virginia Secretary of State 1969-1972, candidate for Governor of West Virginia 1972, Governor of West Virginia 1977-1985, U.S. Senator from West Virginia 1985-2015, delegate to the Democratic National Convention 2000 2004. Nephew of Nelson A. Rockefeller and Winthrop Rockefeller.

Winthrop Paul Rockefeller (1948-2006), Lieutenant Governor of Arkansas 1996-2006, candidate for the Republican nomination for Governor of Arkansas 2006, withdrew nomination. Son of Winthrop Rockefeller.

Mark Dayton (1947-), candidate for U.S. Senate from Minnesota 1982, Auditor of Minnesota 1991-1995, U.S. Senator from Minnesota 2001-2007, delegate to the Democratic National Convention 2004, Governor of Minnesota 2011-2019. Former brother-in-law of John D. Rockefeller, IV (Dayton divorced from Alida Rockefeller 1986).NOTE: John D. Rockefeller IV and Winthrop Paul Rockefeller are also former third cousins by marriage of U.S. Senator William Proxmire.

The Treason of the Senate

The Treason of the Senate was a series of articles in Cosmopolitan magazine by David Graham Phillips, published in 1906. The articles were each published a month apart, beginning with the forward in February and the last article, in July. The series is a caustic exposé of the corruption of the United States Senate, particularly the corporate magnate-turned-Senator Nelson Aldrich from Rhode Island. During the composition of the articles, Phillips received help from newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst, who then desired to publish sensationalist stories to attract more readership of his publications.

The series was thought to be widely accepted because of the lack of much criticism. There were not any efforts to discredit Phillips, apart from an article written in the Chicago Tribune in March 1906, after only the foreword and first article had been published. The article is titled "No Treason In the Senate" and was asking for proof of Phillips' claims. The release of the series precipitated the passage and ratification of the Seventeenth Amendment, which provides the direct election of the U.S. Senators. In the seven years it took to ratify the Amendment, some of the 20 Senators criticized by Phillips in the articles resigned or died. None of the 24 Senators who stood in the first direct election in 1914 was defeated. The option the Amendment allowed (for appointment by the affected state's governor of a new senator when a seat is vacated mid-term) has come under criticism in 2009.

USS Druid (SP-321)

USS Druid (SP-321) was a private yacht launched 10 February 1902 as Rheclair that was built for Daniel G. Reid. Reid sold the yacht to Senator Nelson W. Aldrich who renamed the yacht Nirvana only just over a year before his death. Aldrich's estate chartered Nirvana to John Wanamaker until it was bought by his son Rodman Wanamaker who used the yacht for cruising until a fire on 14 December 1916, just before a cruise south, severely damaged the vessel. He chartered an alternate vessel for his trip south and, after full repairs, the yacht was sold to Walter W. Dwyer who gave it the name Druid with intentions to sell the yacht to the government in order to finance a shipyard venture in Pensacola, Florida.

Druid was purchased for $90,000 by the United States Navy, commissioned USS Druid on 17 September 1917 and converted into a patrol vessel in commission from 1917 to 1919. She was sent to the European coast and the Mediterranean to protect Allied shipping from German submarines and other dangers.

After a little over four months in reserve Druid was decommissioned on 28 May 1919 and sold on 10 September 1919 to Carl K. MacFadden who renamed the vessel Maracay and sold it to Venezuelan buyers by 30 June 1922 when the List of Merchant Vessels of the United States shows it among those changing to foreign interest.

United States Senate Committee on Rules

The United States Senate Committee on Rules is a defunct Congressional committee, replaced by the United States Senate Committee on Rules and Administration.

United States Senate Committee on Rules and Administration

The Senate Committee on Rules and Administration (also called the Senate Rules Committee) is responsible for the rules of the United States Senate, administration of congressional buildings, and with credentials and qualifications of members of the Senate, including responsibility for dealing with contested elections.

The committee is not as powerful as its House counterpart, the House Committee on Rules as it does not set the terms of debate for individual legislative proposals, since the Senate has a tradition of open debate.

Some members of the committee are also ex officio members of the Joint Committee on Printing.

Warwick Neck, Rhode Island

Warwick Neck is a part of the City of Warwick, Rhode Island, United States. This section of Warwick Neck was first settled in 1660s — (built approximately 1896 on 75 acres), home of former U.S. Senator Nelson W. Aldrich (whose daughter Abby wed John D. Rockefeller, Jr.), and Warwick Neck Lighthouse. Also former location of Rocky Point Amusement Park, closed in 1996.

William B. Allison

William Boyd Allison (March 2, 1829 – August 4, 1908) was an early leader of the Iowa Republican Party, who represented northeastern Iowa in the United States House of Representatives before representing his state in the United States Senate. By the 1890s, Allison had become one of the "big four" key Republicans who largely controlled the Senate, along with Orville H. Platt of Connecticut, John Coit Spooner of Wisconsin and Nelson W. Aldrich of Rhode Island.

Born in Perry, Ohio, Allison established a legal practice in Dubuque, Iowa and became a prominent member of the nascent Iowa Republican Party. He was a delegate to the 1860 Republican National Convention and won election to the House of Representatives in 1862. He served four terms in the House and won election to the Senate in 1872. He became chairman of the powerful Senate Appropriations Committee, serving for all but two years between 1881 and 1908. Three different Republican presidents asked Allison to join their Cabinet, but Allison declined each offer. A significant number of delegates supported his presidential nomination at the 1888 and 1896 Republican National Conventions.

Allison emerged as a centrist and pragmatic leader in the Senate, and he helped pass several important bills. The Bland–Allison Act of 1878 restored bimetallism, but in a less inflationary manner than had been sought by Congressman Richard P. Bland. A prominent advocate of higher tariffs, Allison played a major role in the passage of the McKinley Tariff and the Dingley Act. He also helped pass the Hepburn Act by offering the Allison amendment, which granted courts the power to review the Interstate Commerce Commission's railroad rate-setting. Allison sought a record seventh term in the 1908, but died shortly after winning the Republican primary against progressive leader Albert B. Cummins.

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