John Pope (Kentucky)

John Pope (Kentucky)

John Pope
United States Senator
from Kentucky
In office
March 4, 1807 – March 3, 1813
Preceded by Henry Clay
Succeeded by Jesse Bledsoe
12th Secretary of State of Kentucky
In office
October 21, 1816 – August 2, 1819
Governor Gabriel Slaughter
Preceded by Charles Stewart Todd
Succeeded by Oliver G. Waggener
3rd Territorial Governor of Arkansas
In office
March 9, 1829 – March 9, 1835
President Andrew Jackson
Preceded by George Izard
Succeeded by William S. Fulton
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Kentucky's 7th district
In office
March 4, 1837 – March 3, 1843
Preceded by Benjamin Hardin
Succeeded by William Thomasson
Personal details
Born February 1770
Prince William County, Virginia
Died July 12, 1845 (aged 75)
Springfield, Kentucky
Political party Democratic-Republican (as Senator)
Democratic (as Governor)
Whig (as Representative)

John Pope (February 1770 – July 12, 1845)[1] was a United States Senator from Kentucky, a member of the United States House of Representatives from Kentucky, Secretary of State of Kentucky, and the third Governor of Arkansas Territory.


  • Biography 1
  • Career 2
  • Family life 3
  • Death and legacy 4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • Further reading 7
  • External links 8


Pope was born in Prince William County, Virginia in 1770. He lost his arm during his youth and was known as "One-Arm Pope". He graduated from William and Mary College, studied law and moved to Springfield, Kentucky where he was admitted to the bar. He practiced law in Washington, Shelby, and Fayette County, Kentucky.


Pope served as the Presidential Elector from Kentucky in 1801, and was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1802. He served in the House again from 1806 to 1807.[2]

Pope was elected as a Jeffersonian Republican to the United States Senate, serving from 1807 to 1813, and served as President pro tempore of the Senate during the Eleventh Congress. Pope was Secretary of State of Kentucky from 1816 to 1819, under Governor Gabriel Slaughter.[3]

He served as a member of the Kentucky Senate from 1825 to 1829, and was also elected three times to the United States House of Representatives, initially as an Independent[4] and then as a Whig, serving Kentucky's District 7 between 1837 and 1843.

From 1829 to 1835, he served as the Governor of Arkansas Territory. During his term as governor he arranged for the construction of the Old State House which remains the oldest surviving state capitol west of the Mississippi River.

Family life

Pope was married to the sister-in-law of President John Quincy Adams. He was also the brother of Nathaniel Pope, a prominent figure in early Illinois Territory, and the uncle to both John Pope, Union General in the Civil War and Daniel Pope Cook, another prominent politician in the early history of the state of Illinois.

Death and legacy

John Pope died in Springfield, Kentucky, and is buried in the Springfield Cemetery.[5]

Pope County, Arkansas is named for John Pope.[6]

See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Pope, John (1770-1845)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Secretary of State John Pope". Kentucky Secretary of State. Retrieved August 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ Dubin, Michael J. (March 1, 1998). United States Congressional Elections, 1788-1997: The Official Results of the Elections of the 1st Through 105th Congresses. McFarland and Company. p. 117.  
  5. ^ "John "One-Arm Pope" Pope". Find A Grave. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Profile for Pope County, Arkansas, AR". ePodunk. Retrieved August 10, 2012. 

Further reading

  • Allen, William B. (1872). A History of Kentucky: Embracing Gleanings, Reminiscences, Antiquities, Natural Curiosities, Statistics, and Biographical Sketches of Pioneers, Soldiers, Jurists, Lawyers, Statesmen, Divines, Mechanics, Farmers, Merchants, and Other Leading Men, of All Occupations and Pursuits. Bradley & Gilbert. pp. 370–372. Retrieved 2008-11-10. 
  • Baylor, Orville W. (April 1941). "The Life and Times of John Pope -1770-1845". Filson Club Historical Quarterly 15 (2). Retrieved 2011-11-30. 

External links

United States Senate
Preceded by
Henry Clay
U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Kentucky
Served alongside: George M. Bibb
Succeeded by
Jesse Bledsoe
Political offices
Preceded by
John Gaillard
President pro tempore of the United States Senate
February 23, 1811 – November 3, 1811
Succeeded by
William H. Crawford
Preceded by
Robert Crittenden
Territorial Governor of Arkansas
Succeeded by
William S. Fulton
United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Benjamin Hardin
United States Representative (district 7) from Kentucky
Succeeded by
William Thomasson