Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Koerner, Gustav

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KOERNER, Gustav, jurist, b. in Frankfort-on-the-Main, Germany, 20 Nov., 1809. He was graduated in law at Heidelberg in 1832, came to the United States in 1833, and studied American jurisprudence at Transylvania university in 1834-'5, after which he practised his profession in Belleville, Ill., where he now (1887) resides. He was a member of the legislature in 1842-'3, and judge of the supreme court of Illinois from 1845 till 1851. From 1853 till 1857 he served as lieutenant-governor of the state. He was instrumental in raising the 43d Illinois regiment in 1861, but, before its organization was completed, he was appointed colonel of volunteers in August, 1868, and assigned as aide to Gen. Frémont, upon whose removal he was assigned to Gen. Henry W. Halleck's staff, but resigned in April, 1862, owing to impaired health. In July, 1862, he was appointed U. S. minister to Spain, which post he resigned in January, 1865. He was a member for the state at large of the Chicago conventions that nominated Lincoln in 1860 and Horace Greeley in 1872. In 1867 he was appointed president of the board of trustees that organized the Soldiers' orphans' home at Bloomington, Ill., and in 1870 became president of the first board of railroad commissioners of Illinois. He is the author of “Collections of the Important General Laws of Illinois, with Comments” (in German, St. Louis, 1838); “From Spain” (Frankfort-on-the-Main, 1866); “Das deutsche Element in den Vereinigten Staaten, 1818-1848” (Cincinnati, 1880; 2d ed., New York, 1885); and a number of pamphlets.