George T. Anthony papers  1858-1890
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Biography

George Tobey Anthony (1824-1896) was born near Maysfield, Fulton County, N.Y., on June 9th, 1824, the youngest of the five children of Quaker parents, Benjamin (d. 1829) and Anna Odell Anthony (1785-1863). At 16, Anthony was apprenticed to a tinsmith in Union Springs, N.Y., at the conclusion of which, he opened his own tin shop and hardware store in Medina. In 1852, he married Rosa A. Lyon, and at an unknown date, moved to New York City and entered the commission business. The couple had one son, George Henry.

In August, 1862, Anthony was authorized to recruit a battery of artillery near Lockport and Medina, N.Y., and was appointed its Captain when it was mustered into the U.S. service as the 17th New York Independent Light Infantry Battery. The battery left the state at the end of August, 1862, and was assigned to the defenses of Washington, where they remained until transferred to the Artillery Camp of Instruction in May, 1863. When attached to the Artillery Brigade of the Army of the James in July, 1864, the battery saw action on the Petersburg front and sustained their only battle casualties of the war, two wounded. The battery was subsequently engaged in a minor role at Chaffin's Farm and during the Appomattox Campaign.

In November, 1865, Anthony relocated to Leavenworth, Kansas, and worked as editor of the Daily Bulletin and the Daily Conservative for more than two years before he became editor and proprietor of the influential Kansas Farmer. In this capacity, Anthony became influential in shaping agricultural policy in the state, and helped earn him an appointment as President of the State Board of Agriculture from 1874-1876, eventually serving as a springboard to becoming governor of the state in 1877-79. During his administration, Anthony, a staunch Republican, established a separate reformatory for juvenile offenders, was active in subduing Indians and the 1877 railroad strikers, and in general, was "aggressively honest and rather militant in his attitude toward those whom he deemed in the wrong." Anthony's bid for reelection was unsuccessful.

After leaving office, Anthony was appointed superintendent of the Mexican Railway (1881), represented Leavenworth County in the state legislature (1885), was a member of the state Board of Railroad Commissioners (1889), and in 1892, stood unsuccessfully for Congress.