Thomas Kearns

Thomas Kearns

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Thomas Kearns

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Thomas Kearns (April 11, 1862 October 18, 1918) was a mining, banking, railroad and newspaper magnate. He was elected United States Senator from Utah from 1901 to 1905.

Immigration and mining

Born near Woodstock, Ontario, Canada, he moved with his parents to O'Neill in Holt County, Nebraska, where he attended the public schools until he was 17, worked on a farm, and engaged in the freighting business. He moved to Park City, Utah, in 1883,O. N. Malmquist, The First 100 Years, p. 182 They would eventually own several mines throughout Utah, Nevada, Colorado and California. In Park City, Kearns, a Catholic, married Jennie Judge in 1890, and had three children.

Politics

Kearns served in the City Council of Park City in 1895. He was a member of the Utah constitutional convention of 1895, where he worked for an eight-hour work day.

He was elected as a Republican to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy in the term commencing March 4, 1899. At the time, U.S. Senators were still selected by state legislatures. Utah's state legislators had already indicated they would not support the incumbent, Republican Frank J. Cannon, for reelection.Cannon had...
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