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Christopher Gore

In office
May 1, 1808 – June 10, 1810
Lieutenant David Cobb
Preceded by Levi Lincoln, Sr. (acting)
Succeeded by Elbridge Gerry

In office
May 5, 1813 – May 30, 1816
Preceded by James Lloyd
Succeeded by Eli P. Ashmun

Born September 21, 1758(1758-09-21)
Waltham, Massachusetts
Died March 1, 1827 (aged 68)
Waltham, Massachusetts
Political party Federalist
Alma mater Harvard University
Military service
Service/branch Continental Army
Battles/wars American Revolutionary War

Christopher Gore (September 21, 1758 – March 1, 1827) was a prominent Massachusetts lawyer, Federalist politician, and diplomat.



Gore was born in Boston in 1758, the tenth of thirteen children of Frances and John Gore, a successful merchant and artisan. He attended Boston Latin School and graduated from Harvard College in 1776, and served in the Continental Army as a clerk with an artillery regiment. After the war, he became a Boston lawyer and in 1785 married Rebecca Amory Payne, daughter of a wealthy merchant and maritime insurer as well as a director of the Bank of Massachusetts.

One of the young men whom he trained and mentored in his law practice was Daniel Webster.

Gore's political career began in 1788 when he was elected a delegate to the 1789 Massachusetts convention to ratify the Constitution. He was also elected a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives (1788-1789, and again in 1808).

President George Washington appointed Gore the first United States Attorney for Massachusetts, in which post he served 1789-1796.

In 1796, Washington appointed Gore as a commissioner to the Jay Treaty in Britain, in which post he served 1796-1803. Gore also spent two months as chargé d'affaires in London, 1803-1804, after his friend Rufus King resigned from his post. He remained abroad until 1804.

Soon after his return, Gore was elected to the Massachusetts Senate. He ran for Governor of the Commonwealth in 1807 and 1808 before winning a one-year term in 1809. He served as an overseer of Harvard University from 1810-1815 and later a fellow (1812-1820). Gore Hall a Gothic style building built in 1838 of Quincy granite was Harvard's first library building and was named in his honor.

In the spring of 1813 he was appointed to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of James Lloyd (Massachusetts). He served from May 5, 1813 to May 30, 1816. He retired to his country home in Waltham, Massachusetts in 1816, where he remained until 1822 when declining health forced him to return to Boston. He died in 1827 in Waltham, and is buried in the Granary Burying Ground, Boston.

See also


  • Pinkney, Helen. Christopher Gore, Federalist of Massachusetts, 1758-1827. Waltham, Mass.: Gore Place Society, 1969.

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Levi Lincoln, Sr.
Governor of Massachusetts
May 1, 1809 – June 10, 1810
Succeeded by
Elbridge Gerry
United States Senate
Preceded by
James Lloyd
United States Senator (Class 1) from Massachusetts
May 5, 1813 – May 30, 1816
Served alongside: Joseph B. Varnum
Succeeded by
Eli P. Ashmun


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