||Honorable John Marshall Inskeep VANMETER
||Feb 1798, Hardy Cnty, VA
||3 Aug 1875, Chillicothe, Ross County, Ohio
||farmer, state and national lawmaker, including U.S. Congress
||Isaac VANMETER (1757-1837)
||Elizabeth (Bettie) INSKEEP (1763-1827)
|John Marshell Inskeep VanMeter was educated at Princeton and at the law school of Judge Gould at Litchfield, Connecticut. He practiced law at Moorefield, VA, and was elected to the Virginia legislature. Soon thereafter he determined to try his fortunes in the west and in 1826 came to Ohio, where he located on a farm in Pike county. It was not long, however, until he was again drawn into politics, for which he had both taste and talent and found himself a member of the lower house of the Ohio legislature. During the exciting campaign of 1840, ever memorable in the history of the old Whig party of which Mr. Vanmeter was an ardent and conspicuous adherent, he became a candidate for the Ohio state senate and was triumphantly elected. Two years later he received the nomination of his party for Congress and after one of the strenuous struggles characteristic of that political period he was sent to Washington as one of the leaders of the Whig forces. His course was approved and endorsed by renomination in 1844, but the Democrats having control of the Ohio legislature had so "gerrymandered" the state as to relegate Mr. Vanmeter to a district with a hostile majority. However, he accepted his party's trust and made a strong race against no less a personage than the famous Allen G. Thurman, but the Democratic preponderance was too great and he was defeated. |
It was during Mr. Vanmeter's term in Congress that the question came up of making an appropriation to test the practicability of the electric telegraph. Much to his credit he supported the small appropriation asked for by the struggling inventor while others, including some of the greatest men in Congress, were sneering at poor Morse and ridiculing his "effort to talk to the moon over a. wire," as it was facetiously pronounced. After his location in Pike county, Mr. Vanmeter followed farming until 1855, when he removed to Chillicothe and resided in retirement until his death in 1875.
---The information in this file about John Marshell Inskeep VanMeter and his wife, Mary, and their family, is based in part on information found on the Ohio historical places website. Additional information came from R.S. Dill's "History of Ross County, Ohio."
Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. VANMETER, John Inskeep, a Representative from Ohio; born near Moorefield, Hardy County, Va. (now West Virginia), in February 1798; attended the College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Va., and was graduated from Princeton College in 1821; studied law at the school of Judge Gould in Litchfield, Conn.; was admitted to the bar of Virginia in 1822 and commenced practice in Moorefield, Va.; member of the Virginia house of delegates in 1824; retired from practice; moved to Pike County, Ohio, in 1826 and engaged in agricultural pursuits; member of the State house of representatives in 1836; served in the State senate in 1838; elected as a Whig to the Twenty-eighth Congress (March 4, 1843-March 3, 1845); unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1844 to the Twenty-ninth Congress; affiliated with the Democratic Party in 1856; moved to Chillicothe, Ross County, Ohio, in 1855, where he resided until his death August 3, 1875; interment in Grand View Cemetery.
Vanmeter, John Inskeep (1798-1875) Born in Virginia, 1798. Member of Ohio state legislature; U.S. Representative from Ohio 8th District, 1843-45. Died in 1875. Interment at Grandview Cemetery, Chillicothe, Ohio. See also: congressional biography. political graveyard. com.