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History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/David B. Henderson

DAVID B. HENDERSON was a native of Scotland, having been born at Old Deer, on the 14th of March, 1840. He came to America with his father's family in 1846 and in 1849 removed to Iowa, locating on a farm in Fayette County. He remained with his father on the farm assisting him in the summer season and attending school in the winter and finally entered the Upper Iowa University, where he was pursuing his studies when the Rebellion began. The students were greatly excited and in their young enthusiasm many hastened to enlist, among whom was Henderson, who was not yet twenty-one. He volunteered in August, 1861, and was chosen first lieutenant of Company C, Twelfth Infantry. He was wounded at Fort Donelson and again severely at Corinth, having his left foot amputated, so that he had to leave the service in February, 1863. When the Forty-sixth Regiment was organized in June, 1864, he was so far recovered that he was appointed colonel and assumed command for the “hundred days'” service. In the meantime he had served as Commissioner of the Board of Enrollment of the Third District. In November, 1865, he was appointed Collector of Internal Revenue for the Third District, serving until June, 1869, when he resigned and became a member of the law firm of Shiras, Van Duzee & Henderson. Soon after he was appointed Assistant District Attorney for the Northern District of Iowa, serving two years. In the fall of 1882 he was elected on the Republican ticket Representative in Congress for the Third District. He was continuously reëlected to the close of the Nineteenth Century. At the opening of the Fifty-sixth Congress, December, 1899, Colonel Henderson was unanimously nominated by the Republicans for Speaker and elected. During the fourteen years that he had served on the floor of the House, Colonel Henderson had won the respect and esteem of his colleagues of all political parties. He is an eloquent and impressive public speaker and has exercised marked influence upon legislation. In Iowa, where he is as widely known as any man in public life, no citizen of the State has more, or warmer friends. Although representing a district that has sometimes been very close politically, he was never defeated, but served longer continuously that any other Representative in the lower House of Congress from Iowa, since it has had an existence as a State.