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Thirty-first United States Congress

 

Thirty-first United States Congress

31st United States Congress
United States Capitol (1846)

Duration: March 4, 1849 – March 4, 1851

Senate President: Millard Fillmore (until July 9, 1850)
Vacant (starting July 9, 1850)
Senate Pres. pro tem: David R. Atchison
William R. King
House Speaker: Howell Cobb
Members: 62 Senators
233 Representatives
2 Non-voting members
Senate Majority: Democratic
House Majority: none: Democratic plurality

Sessions
Special: March 5, 1849 – March 23, 1849
1st: December 3, 1849 – September 30, 1850
2nd: December 2, 1850 – March 4, 1851
<30th 32nd>

The Thirty-first United States Congress was a meeting of the legislative branch of the United States federal government, consisting of the United States Senate and the United States House of Representatives. It met in Washington, D.C. from March 4, 1849 to March 4, 1851, during the last 17 months of the Zachary Taylor presidency and the first months of Millard Fillmore's. The apportionment of seats in this House of Representatives was based on the Sixth Census of the United States in 1840. The Senate had a Democratic majority, while there was a Democratic plurality in the House.

Major events

Major legislation

Main article: Major legislation: 31st United States Congress
  • September 9, 1850: 458
  • September 18, 1850: 462
  • September 29, 1850: 496

States admitted and territories organized

Party summary

Senate

During this Congress, two Senate seats were added for the new state of California.

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates majority caucus)
Total
Democratic
(D)
Free Soil
(FS)
Whig
(W)
Other Vacant
End of previous Congress 36 0 23 1 60 0
Begin 32 2 25 0 59 1
End 36 24 62 0
Final voting share 58.1% 3.2% 38.7% 0.0%
Beginning of next Congress 34 4 22 0 60 2

House of Representatives

During this Congress, two House seats were added for the new state of California.

Affiliation Party
(Shading indicates plurality caucus)
Total
American
(Know-nothing)
(A)
Democratic
(D)
Free Soil
(FS)
Whig
(W)
Independent
(I)
Other Vacant
End of previous Congress 1 111 0 114 1 2 229 1
Begin 1 113 9 107 0 0 230 1
End 1 231 2
Final voting share 0.4% 48.9% 3.9% 46.3% 0.4% 0.0%
Beginning of next Congress 0 128 3 85 0 17 233 0

Leadership

Senate

House of Representatives

Members

This list is arranged by chamber, then by state. Senators are listed in order of seniority, and Representatives are listed by district.

Senate


Senators were elected by the state legislatures every two years, with one-third beginning new six year terms with each Congress. Preceding the names in the list below are Senate class numbers, which indicate the cycle of their election. In this Congress, Class 1 meant their term ended with this Congress, requiring reelection in 1850; Class 2 meant their term began in the last Congress, requiring reelection in 1852; and Class 3 meant their term began in this Congress, requiring reelection in 1854.

House of Representatives

The names of members of the House of Representatives are preceded by their district numbers.

Changes in membership

The count below reflects changes from the beginning of the first session of this Congress.

Senate

  • replacements: 5
  • deaths: 1
  • resignations: 3
  • seats from newly admitted states: 2
  • interim appointments: 4
  • Total seats with changes: 8


Template:Ordinal US Congress Senate

|- | Illinois
(3) | style="background:#B0CEFF" | James Shields (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Senate voided election March 6, 1849 as Sen. Shields was determined not to have been a US citizen for the number of years required by the Constitution | style="background:#B0CEFF" | James Shields (D) | Elected December 3, 1849 |- | Maryland
(1) | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Reverdy Johnson (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned March 7, 1849 having been appointed United States Attorney General | style="background:#FFFFCC" | David Stewart (W) | Appointed December 6, 1849 |- | Alabama
(2) | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Benjamin Fitzpatrick (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Sen. Dixon Lewis successor elected November 30, 1849 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Jeremiah Clemens (D) | Elected November 30, 1849 |- | Maryland
(1) | style="background:#FFFFCC" | David Stewart (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Successor elected January 12, 1850 | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Thomas Pratt (W) | Elected January 12, 1850 |- | South Carolina
(2) | style="background:#B0CEFF" | John C. Calhoun (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died March 31, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Franklin H. Elmore (D) | Appointed April 11, 1850 |- | South Carolina
(2) | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Franklin H. Elmore (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died May 29, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Robert W. Barnwell (D) | Appointed June 4, 1850 |- | Ohio
(1) | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Thomas Corwin (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned July 20, 1850 after being appointed United States Secretary of the Treasury | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Thomas Ewing (W) | Appointed July 20, 1850 |- | Massachusetts
(1) | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Daniel Webster (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned July 22, 1850 after being appointed United States Secretary of State | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Robert C. Winthrop (W) | Appointed July 30, 1850 |- | California
(1) | colspan=2 style="font-size:80%" | California admitted to the Union September 9, 1850 and remained vacant until September 10, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | John C. Frémont (D) | Elected September 10, 1850 |- | California
(3) | colspan=2 style="font-size:80%" | California admitted to the Union September 9, 1850 and remained vacant until September 10, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | William M. Gwin (D) | Elected September 10, 1850 |- | South Carolina
(2) | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Robert W. Barnwell (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Successor elected December 18, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Robert Rhett (D) | Elected December 18, 1850 |- | Massachusetts
(1) | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Robert C. Winthrop (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Successor elected February 1, 1851 | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Robert Rantoul, Jr. (W) | Elected February 1, 1851 |}

House of Representatives

  • replacements: 11
  • deaths: 8
  • resignations: 5
  • contested election:1
  • seats from newly admitted states: 2
  • Total seats with changes: 16


Template:Ordinal US Congress Rep

|- | Minnesota Territory At-large | Vacant | style="font-size:80%" | Seat remained vacant after territory became organized at end of previous congress | Henry H. Sibley | Seated July 7, 1849 |- | Vermont 3rd | style="background:#FFFFCC" | George Perkins Marsh (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned some time in 1849 | style="background:#FFFFCC" | James Meacham (W) | Seated December 3, 1849 |- | Ohio 6th | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Rodolphus Dickinson (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died March 20, 1849 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Amos E. Wood (D) | Seated December 3, 1849 |- | Virginia 15th | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Alexander Newman (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died September 8, 1849 | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Thomas Haymond (W) | Seated November 8, 1849 |- | Georgia 1st | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Thomas B. King (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned March 3, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Joseph W. Jackson (D) | Seated March 4, 1850 |- | Iowa 1st | style="background:#B0CEFF" | William Thompson (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Seat declared vacant June 29, 1850 after contested election. House ruled neither candidate entitled to seat and forced special election | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Daniel F. Miller (W) | Seated December 20, 1850 |- | Massachusetts 1st | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Robert C. Winthrop (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned July 30, 1850 after being appointed to the US Senate | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Samuel A. Eliot (W) | Seated August 22, 1850 |- | Louisiana 2nd | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Charles M. Conrad (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned August 17, 1850 after being appointed United States Secretary of War | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Henry A. Bullard (W) | Seated December 5, 1850 |- | New Hampshire 3rd | style="background:#FFFFCC" | James Wilson (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Resigned September 9, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | George W. Morrison (D) | Seated October 8, 1850 |- | California At-large | colspan=2 style="font-size:80%" | California admitted into the Union September 9, 1850 and seat remained vacant until September 11, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Edward Gilbert (D) | Seated September 11, 1850 |- | California At-large | colspan=2 style="font-size:80%" | California admitted into the Union September 9, 1850 and seat remained vacant until September 11, 1850 | style="background:#fdfd7f" | George W. Wright (I) | Seated September 11, 1850 |- | Pennsylvania 15th | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Henry Nes (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Died September 10, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Joel B. Danner (D) | Seated December 2, 1850 |- | Pennsylvania 11th | style="background:#FFFFCC" | Chester P. Butler (W) | style="font-size:80%" | Died October 5, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | John Brisbin (D) | Seated November 13, 1850 |- | Louisiana 3rd | style="background:#B0CEFF" | John H. Harmanson (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died October 24, 1850 | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Alexander G. Penn (D) | Seated December 30, 1850 |- | Ohio 6th | style="background:#B0CEFF" | Amos E. Wood (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died November 19, 1850 | style="background:#FFFFCC" | John Bell (W) | Seated January 7, 1851 |- | Texas 1st | style="background:#B0CEFF" | David S. Kaufman (D) | style="font-size:80%" | Died December 31, 1851 | Vacant | Not filled this term |}

Employees

Senate

House of Representatives

References

External links

  • Statutes at Large, 1789-1875
  • Senate Journal, First Forty-three Sessions of Congress
  • House Journal, First Forty-three Sessions of Congress
  • Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress
  • U.S. House of Representatives: House History
  • U.S. Senate: Statistics and Lists
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