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Samuel Freeman Hersey (April 12, 1812February 3, 1875) was a politician and "lumber baron" from the U.S. state of Mainemarker. He served in the Maine State Senate and as a United States Congressman from the district which included his home-town of Bangormarker.

Hersey was born in Sumner, Mainemarker and attended common schools in both Sumner and Buckfieldmarker. He also taught school 1828-1831. He graduated from Hebron Academy in 1831.

Hersey engaged in the mercantile business in Lincolnmarker and in Milfordmarker; and then in the lumber business in Stillwater and finally Bangormarker, where he settled and prospered. In addition to owning timber land he was president of the Market Bank. He was elected as a member of the Maine House of Representatives, and was a delegate to the 1860 Republican National Convention. Hersey was a close friend and patron of Bangor politician and Abraham Lincoln's Vice President Hannibal Hamlin, which is probably why he served on the Republican National Committee 1864-1868. He was elected to the Maine State Senate in 1868-1869.

Hersey was an unsuccessful candidate for Governor of Maine in 1870, but was elected to the Forty-third and Forty-fourth Congresses, serving from March 4, 1873, until his death in Bangor before the close of the Forty-third Congress. He is interred in Mount Hope Cemeterymarker.

Hersey is often styled "General Hersey" in contemporary documents, which is a state militia title dating to the time of the Aroostook War. During the Northeastern Boundary Dispute of 1839-42 he served as Commanding Colonel of the newly formed 6th Regiment of the 1st Brigade and 3rd Division which included the rapidly growing communities on the east of the Penobscot River north of Milford to the St John River. His men were the first responders to the kidnapping of State Land Agent Rufus McIntyre. When The Aroostook was organized into a County in 1840 and the 9th Division of the Maine State Militia was formed, he joined Colonel John Carpenter of Lincoln as the first commanders. He retired from the Maine State Militia as a Major General commanding the 9th Division of the Maine State Militia before removing to Bangor, the headquarters of Maine's Third Militia Division.

Hersey left his fortune to the city of Bangor, Mainemarker which used it to found the Bangor Public Library and built a new City Hall (which was demolished in the late 1960s during "Urban Renewal"). A large portrait of Hersey still hangs in the Bangor Public Library.


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