United States Congressman from Ohio
(1829-1896) Born in Lancaster, Ohio, he was the brother of Generals' Charles Ewing, and Hugh B. Ewing, and foster brother of the famous Union Civil War General William T. Sherman, who later became his brother-in-law when General Sherman married Ewing's sister, Eleanor. At the age of 19, while his father was U.S. Secretary of the Interior, he became the private secretary of President Zachary Taylor, from 1849-1850. He then studied law, graduated from the Cincinnati Law School, and commenced a practice in Cincinnati. In 1856, Ewing moved to Leavenworth, Kansas, where he was an antislavery advocate and had much to do with preventing the admission of Kansas to the Union as a slave state. He served as a member of the Leavenworth Constitutional Convention of 1858, and was a delegate from Kansas at the Peace Conference of 1861 in Washington, D.C., which attempted to prevent the Civil War. Ewing was the first Chief Justice of the Kansas State Supreme Court. In 1862, he recruited and became colonel of the 11th Kansas Cavalry seeing action at Cane Hill and Prairie Grove, Arkansas. On March 13, 1863, he was promoted to rank of brigadier general, and soon took command of the District of the Border, comprising Kansas and western Missouri. In an effort to suppress the bushwhackers who roamed that area, General Ewing issued his notorious Order #11, which decreed expulsion of the inhabitants, loyal or disloyal, from the Missouri counties of Jackson, Cass, Vernon, and Bates. It was issued in retaliation for Confederate guerrilla leader William Quantrill's raid on Lawrence, Kansas, where 450 raiders shot and killed 150 civilians. During Confederate General Sterling Price's famous Missouri Raid in 1864, General Ewing distinguished himself at the battle of Pilot Knob. On February 23, 1865, Ewing resigned his army commission to return to his law practice, tendering his resignation directly to his good friend, and confidant, President Abraham Lincoln, a little over a month before President Lincoln's assassination. Ewing was founder and first president of the Ohio Society of New York, a trustee of the Ohio Soldiers' and Sailors' Orphans' Home. He served as U.S. Congressman from Ohio, 1877-1881.
Signature with place: 4 1/8 x 2, in ink, Thomas Ewing, Lancaster, O.[hio].