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James A. Garfield


As on 14 February 2011


Taken from: Wikipedia - James A. Garfield



Introduction


James Abram Garfield (November 19, 1831 – September 19, 1881) served as the 20th President of the United States, from March 4, 1881 until his assassination on September 19, 1881. He survived a brief 200 days in office, the second shortest presidential tenure to that of William Henry Harrison. He was also the only incumbent of the U.S. House of Representatives to be elected President.

James Garfield was born in Moreland Hills, Ohio and in 1856 graduated from Williams College, Massachusetts. He married Lucretia Rudolph in 1858, and in 1860 was admitted to the Bar while serving as an Ohio State Senator (1859–1861). Garfield served as a major general in the United States Army during the American Civil War and fought at the Battle of Shiloh. He was elected to Congress as a Republican in 1863, opposing slavery and secession. When the leading GOP presidential contenders – Ulysses S. Grant, James G. Blaine and John Sherman – failed to garner the requisite support, Garfield became the party's compromise nominee for the 1880 Presidential Election and successfully defeated Democrat Winfield Hancock. In his inaugural address, Garfield proposed substantial civil service reform which was eventually passed by his successor, Chester A. Arthur, in 1883 as the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act. His presidency was cut short when he was assassinated by Charles J. Guiteau on July 2, 1881 while entering a railroad station in Washington D.C.. Garfield was the second United States President to be assassinated. As a consequence of Garfield's brief tenure in office, accomplishments were few. Following his death, he was succeeded by Vice-President Chester A. Arthur.



Early life


James Garfield was born the youngest of five children on November 19, 1831 in a log cabin in Orange Township, now Moreland Hills, Ohio. His father, Abram Garfield, of large stature and locally renowned as a wrestler, died in 1833, when James Abram was 17 months old. Of Welsh ancestry, he was brought up and cared for by his mother, Eliza Ballou, who said, "he was the largest babe I had and looked like a red Irishman." Garfield's parents joined Disciples of Christ Church, which later profoundly influenced their son.

Garfield attended a predecessor of the Orange City Schools In Orange Township. At age 16 he struck out on his own, drawn seaward as a mariner, and landed a job for six weeks as a canal driver near Cleveland; illness forced him to return home and, once recuperated, he began school at Geauga Academy, where he discovered his lasting inspiration in academics, both learning and teaching. Of this early time Garfield later said, "I lament that I was born to poverty, and in this chaos of childhood, seventeen years passed before I caught any inspiration...a precious 17 years when a boy with a father and some wealth might have become fixed in manly ways." He was in 1849 offered, and accepted, an unsought teaching position, and thereafter developed a personal rejection of "place seeking" which became "the law of my life." In 1850 Garfield resumed his neglected church attendance, and was baptized.



Education, marriage and early career


From 1851 to 1854, he attended the Western Reserve Eclectic Institute founded by the Disciples of Christ (later named Hiram College) in Hiram, Ohio, where he was taught by Platt Rogers Spencer, and was most interested in the study of Greek and Latin. While at Eclectic, he also was engaged to teach there, and as well developed a regular preaching circuit at neighboring churches for a gold dollar per service. Garfield then enrolled at Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts, where he was a brother of Delta Upsilon fraternity and graduated in 1856 as an outstanding student who enjoyed all subjects except chemistry. Garfield was quite impressed with the college President, Mark Hopkins, about whom he said, "The ideal college is Mark Hopkins on one end of a log with a student on the other." Garfield earned the reputation of a skilled debater, was made President of the Philogian Society and Editor of the Williams Quarterly.

After preaching a short time at Franklin Circle Christian Church (1857–58), Garfield ruled out preaching and considered a job as principal of a high school in Poestenkill, New York. After losing that job to another applicant, he returned to teach at the Eclectic Institute. Garfield was an instructor in classical languages for the 1856–1857 academic year, and was made Principal of the Institute from 1857 to 1860, successfully restoring it to viability after it had previously fallen on hard times. During this time, Garfield demonstrated himself politically to be clearly in agreement with the moderate positions of Republican party camp. While he did not consider himself an abolitionist, he was clearly opposed to slavery. In 1858, a migrant freethinker and evolutionary named Denton challenged him to a debate (Darwin's Origin of Species went into publication the next year.) The debate, which lasted over a week, was considered as won convincingly by the local Garfield.

Garfield's first romance had been with Almeda Booth in 1851 but it lasted only a year, with no formal engagement. On November 11, 1858, he married Lucretia Rudolph, known as "Crete" to friends, and a former star Greek pupil of Garfield's. They had seven children (five sons and two daughters): Eliza Arabella Garfield (1860–63); Harry Augustus Garfield (1863–1942); James Rudolph Garfield (1865–1950); Mary Garfield (1867–1947); Irvin M. Garfield (1870–1951); Abram Garfield (1872–1958); and Edward Garfield (1874–76). One son, James R. Garfield, followed him into politics and became Secretary of the Interior under President Theodore Roosevelt. In the mid-1860s, Garfield had an affair with Lucia Calhoun, which he later admitted to his wife, who forgave him.

Garfield had gradually become discontented with his teaching vocation and began in 1859 the study of law. He was admitted to the Ohio bar in 1860. Before admission to the bar, however, he was asked to enter politics by local Republican party leaders, upon the death of Republican Cyrus Prentiss, the presumed nominee for the state senate seat for the 26th District in Ohio. He was nominated by the party convention and then elected an Ohio state senator in 1859, serving until 1861. Garfield's signature effort in the state legislature was a bill providing for the state's first geological survey to measure its mineral resources. His initial observations about the nation leading up to the civil war were that secession was quite inconceivable. His response was in part a renewed zeal for the 4th of July celebrations in 1860.

After Abraham Lincoln's election, Garfield was more inclined to arms than negotiations, saying "Other states may arm to the teeth, but if Ohio so much as cleans her rusty muskets, it is said to have offended our brethren in the South. I am weary of this weakness."



Military career


At the start of the Civil War, Garfield quickly grew anxious as well as frustrated in efforts to obtain an officer's position in the Union Army. Ohio Gov. William Dennison assigned to him a mission in Illinois to acquire musketry and also to negotiate with the Governors of Illinois and Indiana for the consolidation of troops. In the summer of 1861, he was finally commissioned a Colonel in the Union Army and given command of the 42nd Ohio Volunteer Infantry.

General Don Carlos Buell assigned Colonel Garfield the task of driving Confederate forces out of eastern Kentucky in November 1861, giving him the 18th Brigade for the campaign. In December, he departed Catlettsburg, Kentucky, with the 40th Ohio Infantry, the 42nd Ohio Infantry, the 14th Kentucky Infantry, and the 22nd Kentucky Infantry, as well as the 2nd (West) Virginia Cavalry and McLoughlin's Squadron of Cavalry. The march was uneventful until Union forces reached Paintsville, Kentucky, where Garfield's cavalry engaged the Confederate cavalry at Jenny's Creek on January 6, 1862. Garfield artfully positioned his troops so as to deceive Marshall into thinking that he was outnumbered when in fact he was not. The Confederates, under Brig. Gen. Humphrey Marshall, withdrew to the forks of Middle Creek, two miles (3 km) from Prestonsburg, Kentucky, on the road to Virginia and Garfield attacked on January 9, 1862. At the end of the day's fighting, the Confederates withdrew from the field, but Garfield did not pursue them, opting instead to order a withdrawal to Prestonsburg so he could resupply his men. His victory brought him early recognition and was used as justification for a promotion to the rank of brigadier general, on January 11.

Garfield later commanded the 20th Brigade of Ohio under Buell at the Battle of Shiloh, where he lead troops in an attempt, delayed by weather, to reinforce Grant, after a surprise attack by Confederate General Johnston. He then served under Thomas J. Wood in the Siege of Corinth, where he assisted in the subsequent pursuit of the retreating P.T. Beauregard by the overly cautious General Halleck, which resulted in a Confederate escape. This engendered in the furious Garfield a lasting distrust of the training at West Point. Garfield's philosophy of war in 1862 was not then shared by the Union leadership, i.e. to aggressively carry the war to Southern civilians, in a manner later adopted and demonstrated in the battle campaigns of Generals Sherman and Sheridan. His health deteriorated and he was inactive until autumn, when he served on the Court-martial of Fitz John Porter. In the spring of 1863, Garfield returned to the field as Chief of Staff for William S. Rosecrans, commander of the Army of the Cumberland.



National political career


While serving in the field in early 1862, he was approached by friends about political opportunities resulting from the redrawing of the 19th Ohio Congressional District; it was believed that the incumbent John Hutchins was vulnerable. Garfield was predictably conflicted – he was sure that he could be of more valuable service in Congress than in camp; but, he was more determined that his military position not be used as a stepping stone to political advancement. He therefore resorted to his long held objection to "place-seeking", expressed a willingness to serve if elected but otherwise left the matter to others. In October of 1862 he was elected by the Republicans to the United States House of Representatives for Ohio's 19th Congressional District in the 38th Congress. As Congress did not meet until December 1863, Garfield continued to serve with the army and was promoted to major general after the Battle of Chickamauga. He resigned his commission, effective December 5, 1863, to take his seat in Congress. He was re-elected every two years, from 1864 through 1878, during the Civil War and the following Reconstruction era. He was one of the most hawkish Republicans in the House.

Garfield was one of three attorneys who argued for the petitioners in the famous Supreme Court case Ex parte Milligan (1866). The petitioners were pro-Confederate northern men who had been found guilty and sentenced to death by a military court for treasonous activities. The case turned on whether the defendants should, instead, have been tried by a civilian court. Garfield went on to plead other cases before the high court, but none was as high profile as his first argument before the Supreme Court in Milligan.

In 1872, he was one of many congressmen involved in the Crédit Mobilier of America scandal. Garfield denied the charges against him and it did not put too much of a strain on his political career since the actual impact of the scandal was difficult to determine. In 1876, when James G. Blaine moved from the House to the United States Senate, Garfield became the Republican floor leader of the House.

In 1876, Garfield was a Republican member of the Electoral Commission that awarded 20 hotly-contested electoral votes to Rutherford B. Hayes in his contest for the Presidency against Samuel J. Tilden. That year, he also purchased the property in Mentor that reporters later dubbed Lawnfield, and from which he would conduct the first successful front porch campaign for the presidency. The home is now maintained by the National Park Service as the James A. Garfield National Historic Site.


Election of 1880


In 1880, Garfield's life underwent tremendous change with the publication of the Morey letter, and the end of Democratic U.S. Senator Allen Granberry Thurman's term. In January the Ohio legislature, which had recently again come under Republican control, chose Garfield to fill Thurman's seat for the term beginning March 4, 1881. However, at the Republican National Convention where Garfield supported Secretary of the Treasury John Sherman for the party's Presidential nomination, a long deadlock between the Grant and Blaine forces caused the delegates to look elsewhere for a compromise choice and on the 36th ballot Garfield was nominated. Virtually all of Blaine's and John Sherman's delegates broke ranks to vote for the dark horse nominee in the end. As it happened, the U.S. Senate seat to which Garfield had been chosen ultimately went to Sherman, whose Presidential candidacy Garfield had gone to the convention to support. Garfield's ascendancy to the 1880 Republican nomination for the Presidency over prominent Republican presidential contenders was monumental.

A central controversial issue during the Election of 1880 was Chinese immigration; an issue that could make or break any Presidential contender during this time period. Those in the West, particularly California, were against Chinese immigration claiming that growth in the Pacific would be limited. Easterners, such a Senator George F. Hoar, took a more philosophical and religious stand in favor of Chinese immigration. Garfield, on July 12, 1880 favored limiting Chinese immigration, which he labeled as "an invasion to be looked upon without solicitude." However, Garfield's primary supporter in the Senate, James G. Blaine, had sent out a letter that allegedly favored Chinese immigration. It was speculated that Blaine's letter cost Garfield valuable electoral votes in California.

In 1880, Garfield's life underwent tremendous change with the publication of the Morey letter, and the end of Democratic U.S. Senator Allen Granberry Thurman's term. In January the Ohio legislature, which had recently again come under Republican control, chose Garfield to fill Thurman's seat for the term beginning March 4, 1881. However, at the Republican National Convention where Garfield supported Secretary of the Treasury John Sherman for the party's Presidential nomination, a long deadlock between the Grant and Blaine forces caused the delegates to look elsewhere for a compromise choice and on the 36th ballot Garfield was nominated. Virtually all of Blaine's and John Sherman's delegates broke ranks to vote for the dark horse nominee in the end. As it happened, the U.S. Senate seat to which Garfield had been chosen ultimately went to Sherman, whose Presidential candidacy Garfield had gone to the convention to support. Garfield's ascendancy to the 1880 Republican nomination for the Presidency over prominent Republican presidential contenders was monumental.

A central controversial issue during the Election of 1880 was Chinese immigration; an issue that could make or break any Presidential contender during this time period. Those in the West, particularly California, were against Chinese immigration claiming that growth in the Pacific would be limited. Easterners, such a Senator George F. Hoar, took a more philosophical and religious stand in favor of Chinese immigration. Garfield, on July 12, 1880 favored limiting Chinese immigration, which he labeled as "an invasion to be looked upon without solicitude." However, Garfield's primary supporter in the Senate, James G. Blaine, had sent out a letter that allegedly favored Chinese immigration. It was speculated that Blaine's letter cost Garfield valuable electoral votes in California.

In the general election, Garfield defeated the Democratic candidate Winfield Scott Hancock, another distinguished former Union Army general, by 214 electoral votes to 155. (The popular vote had a plurality of less than 2,000 votes out of more than 8.89 million cast; see U.S. presidential election, 1880.) He became the only man ever to be elected to the Presidency straight from the House of Representatives and was, for a short period, a sitting representative, senator-elect, and president-elect. If sworn in, he would have been the first U.S. senator to be elected president; Warren G. Harding became the first to do so forty years later. However, Garfield resigned his other positions and, on March 4, 1881, took office as President, and never sat in the Senate, where that term began on the same day.



Presidency


President Garfield had only 4 months to establish his presidency before being fatally shot by Charles J. Guiteau, a deranged political office seeker, on July 2, 1881. During his limited time in office he was able to reestablish the independence of the presidency by defying the Republican Stalwart boss, Senator Roscoe Conkling. His inaugural address set the agenda for his presidency; however, he was unable to live long enough to implement these policies. Garfield's call for civil service reform, however, was fulfilled in the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act passed by Congress and signed by President Chester A. Arthur in 1883. Garfield's assassination was the primary motivation for the reform bill's passage. The year 2011 marks the 150th anniversary of the Civil War and 130th anniversary of President Garfield's assassination and death.


Inaugural address

Snow covered much of the Capitol grounds during Garfield's inaugural address with a low turn out, about 7,000 people, who came to inauguration. Garfield was sworn into office by Chief Justice Morrison Waite on Friday, March 4, 1881.

“ The elevation of the negro race from slavery to the full rights of citizenship is the most important political change we have known since the adoption of the Constitution of 1787. ”
“ ...there was no middle ground for the negro race between slavery and equal citizenship. There can be no permanent disfranchised peasantry in the United States. Freedom can never yield its fullness of blessings so long as the law or its administration places the smallest obstacle in the pathway of any virtuous citizen.”
“ The nation itself is responsible for the extension of the suffrage, and is under special obligations to aid in removing the illiteracy which it has added to the voting population. For the North and South alike there is but one remedy. All the constitutional power of the nation and of the States and all the volunteer forces of the people should be surrendered to meet this danger by the savory influence of universal education. ”
“ By the experience of commercial nations in all ages it has been found that gold and silver afford the only safe foundation for a monetary system. Confusion has recently been created by variations in the relative value of the two metals, but I confidently believe that arrangements can be made between the leading commercial nations which will secure the general use of both metals.”
“ The interests of agriculture deserve more attention from the Government than they have yet received. The farms of the United States afford homes and employment for more than one-half our people, and furnish much the largest part of all our exports. As the Government lights our coasts for the protection of mariners and the benefit of commerce, so it should give to the tillers of the soil the best lights of practical science and experience. ”
“ The civil service can never be placed on a satisfactory basis until it is regulated by law. For the good of the service itself, for the protection of those who are intrusted with the appointing power against the waste of time and obstruction to the public business caused by the inordinate pressure for place, and for the protection of incumbents against intrigue and wrong... ”
“ The Mormon Church not only offends the moral sense of manhood by sanctioning polygamy, but prevents the administration of justice through ordinary instrumentalities of law. ”


Inaugural parade and ball

Official White House portrait of James GarfieldJohn Philip Sousa led the Marine Corps band both at the inaugural parade and ball. The ball was held in the National Museum, now the Arts and Industries Building, of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.


Administration and Cabinet

Between his election and his inauguration, Garfield was occupied with constructing a cabinet that would balance all Republican factions. He rewarded Blaine by appointing him Secretary of State. He also nominated William Windom of Minnesota as Secretary of the Treasury, William H. Hunt of Louisiana as Secretary of the Navy, Robert Todd Lincoln as Secretary of War, Samuel J. Kirkwood of Iowa as Secretary of the Interior. He appointed Wayne MacVeagh of Pennsylvania Attorney General. New York was represented by Thomas Lemuel James as Postmaster General.

This last appointment infuriated Garfield's Stalwart rival Roscoe Conkling, who demanded nothing less for his faction and his state than the Treasury Department. The resulting squabble consumed the energies of the brief Garfield presidency. It overshadowed promising activities such as Blaine's efforts to build closer ties with Latin America, Postmaster General James's investigation of the "star route" postal frauds, and Windom's successful refinancing of the federal debt. The feud with Conkling reached a climax when the President, at Blaine's instigation, nominated Conkling's enemy, Judge William H. Robertson, to be collector of the port of New York. Conkling raised the time-honored principle of senatorial courtesy in attempting to defeat the nomination, but to no avail. Finally he and his junior colleague, Thomas C. Platt, resigned their Senate seats to seek vindication, but they found only further humiliation when the New York legislature elected others in their places. Garfield's victory was complete. He had routed his foes, weakened the principle of senatorial courtesy, and revitalized the presidential office.

President Garfield's only official social function made outside the White House was a visit to the Columbia Institution for the Deaf (later Gallaudet University) in May 1881.


Only executive order

Garfield's one and only executive order was to give executive government workers the day off on May 30, 1881, in order to decorate the graves of those who died in the Civil War.

Executive Order
May 28, 1881
Dear Sir:
I am directed by the President to inform you that the several Departments of the Government will be closed on Monday, the 30th instant, to enable the employees to participate in the decoration of the graves of the soldiers who fell during the rebellion.
Very respectfully,
J. Stanley Brown, Private Secretary.
Addressed to the heads of the Executive Departments, etc.



Assassination


Garfield had little time in office. He was shot by Charles J. Guiteau, disgruntled by failed efforts to secure a federal post, on July 2, 1881, at 9:30 a.m. The President had been walking through the Sixth Street Station of the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad (a predecessor of the Pennsylvania Railroad) in Washington, D.C. Garfield was on his way to his alma mater, Williams College, where he was scheduled to deliver a speech, accompanied by Secretary of State James G. Blaine, Secretary of War Robert Todd Lincoln (son of Abraham Lincoln) and two of his sons, James and Harry. The station was located on the southwest corner of present day Sixth Street Northwest and Constitution Avenue in Washington, D.C. (The West Building of the National Gallery of Art now occupies this site; the rotunda of that building sits astride the former location of Sixth Street directly south of Constitution Avenue.) As he was being arrested after the shooting, Guiteau repeatedly said, "I am a Stalwart of the Stalwarts! I did it and I want to be arrested! Arthur is President now!" which briefly led to unfounded suspicions that Arthur or his supporters had put Guiteau up to the crime. (The Stalwarts strongly opposed Garfield's Half-Breeds; like many vice presidents, Arthur was chosen for political advantage, to placate his faction, rather than for skills or loyalty to his running-mate.) Guiteau was upset because of the rejection of his repeated attempts to be appointed as the United States consul in Paris – a position for which he had absolutely no qualifications. Garfield's assassination was instrumental to the passage of the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act on January 16, 1883.

One bullet grazed Garfield's arm; the second bullet lodged in his spine and could not be found, although scientists today think that the bullet was near his lung. Alexander Graham Bell devised a metal detector specifically to find the bullet, but the device was reading the metal bed springs.

Garfield became increasingly ill over a period of several weeks due to infection, which caused his heart to weaken. He remained bedridden in the White House with fevers and extreme pains. On September 6, the ailing President was moved to the Jersey Shore in the vain hope that the fresh air and quiet there might aid his recovery. In a matter of hours, local residents put down a special rail spur for Garfield's train; some of the ties are now part of the Garfield Tea House. The beach cottage Garfield was taken to has been demolished.

Garfield died of a massive heart attack or a ruptured splenic artery aneurysm, following blood poisoning and bronchial pneumonia, at 10:35 p.m. on Monday, September 19, 1881, in the Elberon section of Long Branch, New Jersey. The wounded President died exactly two months before his 50th birthday. During the eighty days between his shooting and death, his only official act was to sign an extradition paper.

Dr. Doctor Willard Bliss, (who was a Doctor of Medicine but whose given name was also "Doctor") Garfield's chief doctor, recorded the following:

“ Only a moment elapsed before Mrs. Garfield was present. She exclaimed, 'Oh! what is the matter?' I said, 'Mrs. Garfield, the President is dying.' Leaning over her husband and fervently kissing his brow, she exclaimed, 'Oh! Why am I made to suffer this cruel wrong?'...Restoratives, which were always at hand, were instantly resorted to. In almost every conceivable way it was sought to revive the rapidly yielding vital forces. A faint, fluttering pulsation of the heart, gradually fading to indistinctness, alone rewarded my examinations. At last, only moments after the first alarm, at 10:35, I raised my head from the breast of my dead friend and said to the sorrowful group, 'It is over.' Noiselessly, one by one, we passed out, leaving the broken-hearted wife alone with her dead husband. Thus she remained for more than an hour, gazing upon the lifeless features, when Colonel Rockwell, fearing the effect upon her health, touched her arm and begged her to retire, which she did." ”

Most historians and medical experts now believe that Garfield probably would have survived his wound had the doctors attending him been more capable. Several inserted their unsterilized fingers into the wound to probe for the bullet, and one doctor punctured Garfield's liver in doing so. This alone would not have caused death as the liver is one of the few organs in the human body that can regenerate itself. However, this physician probably introduced Streptococcus bacteria into the President's body and that caused blood poisoning for which at that time there were no antibiotics.

Guiteau was found guilty of assassinating Garfield, despite his lawyers raising an insanity defense. He insisted that incompetent medical care had really killed the President. Although historians generally agree that poor medical care was an element, it was not a legal defense. Guiteau was sentenced to death, and was executed by hanging on June 30, 1882, in Washington, D.C.

Garfield was buried, with great solemnity, in a mausoleum in Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland, Ohio. The monument is decorated with five terracotta bas relief panels by sculptor Caspar Buberl, depicting various stages in Garfield's life. Originally, he was interred in a temporary brick vault in the same cemetery. In 1887, the James A. Garfield Monument was dedicated in Washington, D.C. A cenotaph to him is located in Miners Union Cemetery in Bodie, California. On the grounds of the San Francisco Conservatory of Flowers stands a monument to the fallen president completed in 1884; it was designed by sculptor Frank Happersberger.

At the time of his death, Garfield was survived by his mother. He is one of only three presidents to have predeceased their mothers. The others were James K. Polk and John F. Kennedy.

On January 12, 2010, a previously unknown life insurance policy on the life of Garfield was discovered in Orient, New York. The policy was found in a family scrap book dating from the same period of his death and had a benefit amount of $10,000. It was opened on May 18, 1881, just 45 days prior to the date Garfield was shot by Guiteau, and was surrendered and signed by Lucretia Garfield and Joseph Stanley-Brown, both witnesses to Garfield's death.

The U.S. has twice had three presidents in the same year. The first such year was 1841. Martin Van Buren ended his single term, William Henry Harrison was inaugurated and died a month later, then Vice President John Tyler stepped into the vacant office. The second occurrence was in 1881. Rutherford B. Hayes relinquished the office to James A. Garfield. Upon Garfield's death, Chester A. Arthur became president.



Legacy


James Garfield was featured on the series 1882 $20 Gold Certificate, a currency note considered to be of moderate rarity and quite valuable to collectors.

Garfield Avenue in the suburb of Five Dock, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia is named after James A. Garfield, as is Garfield Street in Phoenix, Arizona, Chelsea, Michigan, and the suburb of Brooklyn, Wellington, New Zealand.

Garfield County in Montana, Nebraska, Utah, and Washington are named after James A. Garfield.

Upon officially becoming a town, a Kansas settlement that went by the name Camp Riley renamed itself Garfield City to pay tribute to the politician, who once visited the settlement during military duty at the nearby Fort Larned. Garfield City is now known as Garfield, Kansas and has a population of under two hundred people at the 2000 census. A sandstone statue of Garfield was dedicated in May 2009 on the campus of Hiram College. A week later, the statue was decapitated by vandals. The missing head was recovered in July 2009.

James A. Garfield School District is located in Garrettsville, Ohio, about 5 miles east of Hiram College, where Garfield studied, taught and later became president in 1857 at the age of 26. The district consists of 1,580 students in grades kindergarten through 12.