The New Student's Reference Work/Foster, John Watson
Fos’ter, John Watson, American diplomatist, was born in Pike County, Ind., on March 2, 1836, and graduated from the University of Indiana. After taking a law-course at Harvard, he practiced law at Evansville, Ind., where the also was postmaster for a time. He distinguished himself during the Civil War as major and colonel of Indiana regiments. Subsequently he held diplomatic appointments, being minister to Mexico (1873-80), to Russia (1881) and to Spain (1883-85). In 1892 he succeeded Blaine as secretary of state, and in the following year represented the United States at Paris in the Bering Sea arbitration. He has also acted as plenipotentiary in the negotiation of reciprocity treaties, and has acted as peace-commissioner and envoy of the United States in international arbitration. His history of American diplomacy is a final authority.