The New International Encyclopædia/Taft, William Howard
TAFT, William Howard (1857—). An American jurist and administrator, son of Alphonso Taft, born in Cincinnati. He graduated at Yale in 1878, and at the Law School of Cincinnati College two years later. In 1881-82 he was prosecutor of Hamilton County, and later for a time was a collector of internal revenue. From 1887 to 1890 he was a judge of the Superior Court of Ohio, was Solicitor-General of the United States in 1890-92, and was a judge of the United States Circuit Court (sixth circuit) from 1892 to 1900, when at the request of President McKinley he resigned to become chairman of the commission appointed to establish civil government in the Philippines. The following year, on June 5th, he was appointed the first civil Governor of the islands. In 1903 Taft resigned this position to accept the appointment of Secretary of War, as successor of Elihu Root. Consult: American Monthly Review of Reviews, vol. xxiv. (1901); and The Outlook, vols. lxiv., lxix., and lxx. See Philippine Islands.