Arthur Sewall

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Arthur Sewall
ArthurSewall.png
Sewall in 1896
Personal details
Born November 25, 1835
Bath, Maine
Died September 5, 1900 (aged 64)
Small Point, Maine
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Emma Duncan Crocker
Children Harold Marsh Sewall and William Dunning Sewall
Residence Bath, Maine
Occupation Shipbuilder, railroad president and director, bank president
Religion Swedenborgian

Arthur Sewall (November 25, 1835 – September 5, 1900) was a U.S. Democratic politician from Maine most notable as William Jennings Bryan's first running mate in 1896.1 As the Populist Party nominee, Bryan had another running mate as well, Thomas E. Watson. Sewall never held elective office, although he was a member of the Democratic National Committee from 1888 to 1896.

Arthur Sewall's main claim to fame had been as an exceptionally successful, wealthy shipbuilder and New England industrialist. He was a director of the Maine Central railroad and President of the Bath National Bank for years. His selection is believed to have been an effort to win votes among conservative and New England members of the party who were disturbed by the populist aspects of William Jennings Bryan. Arthur Sewall is also one of the few politicians to be an adherent of Swedenborgianism, a religion based on the writings of Swedish theologian Emanuel Swedenborg.2

His main vice-presidential opponent, Garret A. Hobart (Rep), was also an Eastern banker and industrialist who had served on his party's national committee.

Sewall was Bryan's running mate for the first of Bryan's three times as the Democratic presidential nominee. He died not long after Bryan was nominated for the second time in 1900.

Sewall's grandson, Sumner Sewall, served as Governor of Maine from 1941 to 1945, as a Republican.

Legacy

In 2008, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch referenced Sewall in an article criticizing Senator John McCain's selection of Gov. Sarah Palin as his vice presidential candidate in the 2008 presidential election, saying he had picked "the least qualified running mate since the Swedenborgian shipbuilder Arthur Sewall ran as William Jennings Bryan's No. 2 in 1896."3

References

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Party political offices
Preceded by
Adlai Stevenson
Democratic vice presidential nominee
1896
Succeeded by
Adlai Stevenson







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