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John Brooks Henderson

John Brooks Henderson

One hundred fifty years ago, December 6, 1865, the state of Georgia approved the 13th Amendment to the Constitution.  The majority of states thus approving, the Amendment was ratified and the scourge of slavery was officially over.

A Missourian, John Brooks Henderson of Pike County, was a U. S. Senator in 1865 and he co-authored the 13th Amendment in the Senate.  A minor politician before the War, and briefly during the War a general in the Missouri State Militia, Henderson was appointed to the Senate by a Radical Republican state legislature in 1864. Henderson’s political aspirations came to an end when he voted in 1868 to acquit President Andrew Johnson of charges of impeachment – a most un-radical thing to do.  One of seven Republican Senators to do so, Henderson thus earned a place in John F. Kennedy’s book Profiles in Courage.

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