The New International Encyclopædia/Wilmot, David

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WILMOT, David (1814-68). An American political leader and jurist, born in Bethany, Pa. He was admitted to the bar at Wilkes-Barre in 1834, and practiced at Towanda. In time he became prominent as a Democratic politician, and from 1845 to 1851 was a member of the National House of Representatives. Although elected as a Democrat, he opposed the extension nf slavery into the territory that it was expected the United States would acquire from Mexico, and in 1846 he moved his famous amendment, known as the Wilmot Proviso (q.v.). In 1848 he supported Van Buren for the Presidency instead of the regular Democratic candidate, and afterwards became a Republican. He was president-judge of the thirteenth district of Pennsylvania during 1853-61; was defeated as a candidate for Governor on the Republican ticket in 1857; served in the United States Senate 1861-63; and then held the office of judge of the United States Court of Claims until his death.