William Sprague Photo

William Sprague

Born: Feb 23, 1809

Death: Sep 19, 1868

Birthplace: Providence

Nationality: United States

William Sprague

Date of Birth : Feb 23, 1809
Date of Death : Sep 19, 1868
Birth Place : Providence

William Sprague was a minister and politician in the U.S. state of Michigan. Sprague was born in Providence, Rhode Island, a distant cousin of William Sprague, Governor of Rhode Island. He attended the public schools there, moved to Michigan, and settled in Kalamazoo, where he studied theology and was ordained as a minister. He was presiding elder of the Methodist Episcopal Church, Kalamazoo district, 1844–1848. Sprague served as United States Indian Agent in Michigan 1852–1853. In the early 1830s, Sprague was a circuit minister for many communities in central and southwest Michigan. He delivered the first gospel sermon ever given in Van Buren County, Michigan, in the first log cabin which was built in spring 1829. He organized the first Methodist class in Niles in 1832 and was pastor there in 1862 when construction began on a historical Italianate style church building. In the fall of 1832, Sprague became circuit pastor for Coldwater. Sprague defeated incumbent Democrat Charles E. Stuart to be elected as a Whig, though he is sometimes also identified with the Free Soil Party, from Michigan's 2nd District to the Thirty-first Congress, serving March 4, 1849–March 3, 1851.

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