John Alexander Martin
State Senator, governor. Republican. Born: March 10, 1839. Died: October 2, 1889. Served as 10th governor of Kansas: January 12, 1885, to January 14, 1889.
Martin was originally from Pennsylvania where he learned to be a printer. He came to Kansas in 1857 and bought a newspaper that he renamed as Freedom's Champion. He was a free state activist and helped to organize the Kansas Republican Party. He was active in the formation of Kansas government. Martin was chosen as secretary to the Wyandotte Constitutional Convention at the age of 21. He was elected to the state senate in 1861.
Martin served in the Civil War, including with General Sherman's army in the crucial 1864 campaign. He was released from service as a general.
Martin continued his involvement in politics and journalism back in Kansas. He served as president of the Kansas Historical Society in 1878. He was elected governor in 1884 and reelected in 1886.
Entry: Martin, John Alexander
Author: G. Joseph Pierron
Author information: Judge Pierron serves on the Kansas Court of Appeals and has an interest in Kansas history.
Date Created: March 2012
Date Modified: July 2016
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