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Garret Hobart

In office
March 4, 1897 – November 21, 1899
President William McKinley
Preceded by Adlai E. Stevenson
Succeeded by Theodore Roosevelt

In office
1881 – 1881
Preceded by William J. Sewell
Succeeded by John J. Gardner

In office
1874 – 1874
Preceded by Isaac L. Fisher
Succeeded by George O. Vanderbilt

Born June 3, 1844(1844-06-03)
Long Branch, New Jersey
Died November 21, 1899 (aged 55)
Paterson, New Jersey
Nationality American
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Jennie Tuttle Hobart
Alma mater Rutgers College

Garret Augustus Hobart (June 3, 1844 – November 21, 1899) was the 24th Vice President of the United States.



Garret Hobart
V. P. Hobart bust

He was born in Long Branch, New Jersey, to Sophia Vanderveer and Addison Willard Hobart, a descendant in the eighth generation of English emigrant to Massachusetts, Edmund Hobart (1573–1646),[1] and grew up in Marlboro. He graduated at the top of his class from Rutgers College in 1863 and was a member of The Delta Phi Fraternity. He was admitted to the bar in 1866, and practiced in Paterson.

After service as clerk of a grand jury, Hobart was elected a judge in Paterson in 1868. In 1871, after his father-inlaw became mayor, Hobart was appointed to the post of city counsel.[2] Hobart served in the Paterson city council before serving in the New Jersey General Assembly from 1872 to 1876, serving as speaker in 1874. He was a member of the New Jersey Senate from 1876 to 1882, serving as its president in 1881. He represented Passaic County.[3]

In addition, he served in various positions in the Republican Party: chairman of the New Jersey Republican State Committee, 1880–91,[4][5] and the New Jersey member of the Republican National Committee, 1884–96. He failed in his bid for the United States Senate in 1884.[6]

Hobart was twice offered, but declined, the Republican nomination for Governor of New Jersey in 1892 and 1895.[6]

Hobart was also a prominent and successful businessman and industrialist, who accumulated a large fortune.[7] He had an interest in baseball and spent $4,000 on a ballpark in Paterson, working with Ed Barrow. [8]

He was nominated as the Republican candidate for Vice President on the ticket with William McKinley, and was elected in the 1896 presidential election.

He served as Vice President from March 4, 1897, until his death from heart failure in Paterson, New Jersey, on November 21, 1899, aged 55.

During his tenure Hobart became one of the McKinleys' friends and his close confidant and adviser. He was called "Assistant to the President".[9] Because of this and in contrast to the tradition of a powerless Vice Presidency, he is regarded as one of the most powerful Vice Presidents while in office.

In 1899, Hobart became ill. He returned to New Jersey to recover, but instead became worse. He died from heart failure. Following his death, the Vice Presidency remained vacant for more than a year until the inauguration of Theodore Roosevelt to that post in 1901. Hobart is interred in Cedar Lawn Cemetery.

The city of Paterson placed a bronze statue of Hobart in front of its city hall, next to a statue of city founder Alexander Hamilton.[10] Hobart's statue remains there to this day, and is one of three that stand in front of the building (the other two honor former Paterson mayors Nathan Barnert and Dr. Andrew McBride).


Personal life

Jennie Tuttle Hobart

Hobart married Esther Jane "Jennie" Tuttle on July 21, 1869.[7] They had two children, Garret Jr, and Fannie. Fannie died in 1895.

During his tenure as Vice President, his wife frequently performed the duties of First Lady because Ida Saxton McKinley, wife of President of the United States William McKinley, suffered from epilepsy.

Mrs. McKinley and Mrs. Hobart became close friends, and the latter rushed to Buffalo, New York while the president lay dying from bullet wounds in September, 1901, to offer sympathetic support to the First Lady.

Electoral history

New Jersey United States Senate election, 1883 (by state legislature):[11]

1896 Republican National Convention (Vice Presidential tally):[12]

United States presidential election, 1896

  • William McKinley/Garret Hobart (R) – 7,112,138 (51.0%) and 271 electoral votes (23 states carried)
  • William Jennings Bryan/Arthur Sewall/Thomas E. Watson (D/P) – 6,508,172 (46.7%) and 176 electoral votes (22 states carried)
    NOTE: Bryan was nominated by both the Democrats and Populists; Sewall was his Democratic running-mate, while Watson was his Populist running-mate.


External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Adlai E. Stevenson I
Vice President of the United States
March 4, 1897 – November 21, 1899
Title next held by
Theodore Roosevelt
New Jersey Senate
Preceded by
William J. Sewell
President of the New Jersey Senate
1881 – 1882
Succeeded by
John J. Gardner
New Jersey General Assembly
Preceded by
Isaac L. Fisher
Speaker of the New Jersey General Assembly
Succeeded by
George O. Vanderbilt
Party political offices
Preceded by
Whitelaw Reid
Republican Party vice presidential candidate
Succeeded by
Theodore Roosevelt
Position Created Chairman of the New Jersey Republican State Committee
1880 – 1891
Succeeded by
John Kean
Preceded by
Frederick T. Frelinghuysen
Republican Party nominee for United States Senator from New Jersey
(Class 2)

Succeeded by
William J. Sewell


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