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William Seward
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U.S. Secretary of State
    (May 16, 1801-October 10, 1872)
    Served as a New York senator (1830-1834)
    Governor of New York (1838-1842)
    U.S. Secretary of State (1861-1869)
    Organized the purchase of Alaska Territory from Russia for $7,200,000 (1867)
    Radical Republicans saw him as a bad influence on President Abraham Lincoln and attempted to oust him from from his job (1862).
    After the Civil War ended, he began to turn conservative and support laws appeasing Southern whites.
    Alaska was considered a barren wasteland at the time of his purchase.
    His decision to buy Alaska Territory was regarded as so foolish in the 1860's, that people referred to the purchase as 'Seward's Folly.'
    He was passionately against slavery.
    He is one of the key Union figures of the Civil War.
    He survived an assassination attempt by one of John Wilkes Booth's conspirators the night Lincoln was shot (April 14, 1865).
    The United States makes so much money today from Alaska, that it could pay back the original purchase price every day.

Credit: Ratman

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