Biography of William Henry Koontz

Edited by Lewis R. Hemersly
First Edition, 1904

KOONTZ, William Henry:
Lawyer and legislator; born in Somerset, Pa., July 15, 1830; educated in the common schools; read law with Forward & Stutzman, and was admitted to the bar in 185l. He was elected District Attorney of Somerset County on the Whig ticket in 1856 and was nominated for the State Senate in 1857. A delegate to the Republican National Convention of 1860, he was one of the flrst to cast his vote for Lincoln. He was elected Prothonotary of the county in 1860, and in 1864 was elected to Congress, being re-elected in 1866. He was very active during the reconstruction period, and was conspicuous in the impeachment proceedings against President Johnson. In later years he was active as a political orator in election campaigns, speaking widely in 1875, 1876, 1880, 1844, etc. Meanwhile he carried on a large legal business and was concerned in a large number of leading cases. In 1895 he was elected to the State Legislature, and re-elected in 1900, and in his last term was nominated for Speaker of the House, being defeated by but one vote, though the Senate organization, under M. S. Quay, was against him. Mr. Koontz is Vice President of the Somerset County National Bank and a director In several railroad and coal companies.

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