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Rufus Choate

Personal data
Date of birthOctober 1, 1799
Place of birthIpswich, Massachusetts
Date of deathJuly 13, 1859(age 59)
Place of deathHalifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Political partyWhig
Alma materDartmouth College
Harvard University
In officeFebruary 23, 1841 - March 4, 1845
Succeeded byDaniel Webster
Preceded byDaniel Webster
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 2nd district
In officeMarch 4, 1831 - June 30, 1834
Succeeded byStephen C. Phillips
Preceded byBenjamin W. Crowninshield
10th Massachusetts Attorney General
In office1853 - 1854
Succeeded byJohn H. Clifford
Preceded byJohn H. Clifford

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Rufus Choate (October 1, 1799 - July 13, 1859), American lawyer and orator, was born in Ipswich, Massachusetts, a descendant of an English family which settled in Massachusetts in 1643. His first cousin, physician George Choate, was the father of George C. S. Choate and Joseph Hodges Choate. Rufus Choate's birthplace, Choate House, remains virtually unchanged to this day.

A precocious child, at six he is said to have been able to repeat large parts of the Bible and of Pilgrim's Progress from memory. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and graduated as valedictorian of his class at Dartmouth College in 1819, was a tutor there in 1819 1820, spent a year in the law school of Harvard University, and studied for a like period in Washington, D.C., in the office of William Wirt, then Attorney General of the United States.

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