William Maxwell Evarts (February 6, 1818 – February 28, 1901) was an American lawyer and statesman who served as U.S. Secretary of State, U.S. Attorney General and U.S. Senator from New York. He was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of author, editor, and Indian removal opponent Jeremiah Evarts, and the grandson of Declaration of Independence signer Roger Sherman.

William attended Boston Latin School, graduated from Yale College in 1837 and then attended Harvard Law School. While at Yale he became a member of the Linonian Society and the secret society Skull and Bones, but later in life spoke out against such societies at the 1873 Yale commencement alumni meeting, claiming they bred snobbishness.

He was admitted to the bar in New York in 1841, and soon took high rank in his profession. He married Helen Minerva Bingham Wardner in 1843. They had 12 children between 1845 and 1862, all born in New York City.

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William Maxwell Evarts Poems

William Maxwell Evarts Quotes

The pious ones of Plymouth who, reaching the Rock, first fell upon their own knees and then upon the aborigines.
William M. Evarts (1818-1901), U.S. statesman. Quoted by Henry Watterson in Louisville Courier-Journal (July 4, 1913). Also attributed to various others, including Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., and Bill Nye.

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