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(born April 4, 1792, Danville, Vt., U.S.died Aug. 11, 1868, Washington, D.C.) U.S. politician. He practiced law in Pennsylvania, defending fugitive slaves without fee. In the U.S. House of Representatives (1849–53, 1859–68), he opposed the extension of slavery into the western territories. After the American Civil War, as a leader of the Radical Republicans, he demanded strict conditions for readmission of the seceded states. He helped establish the Freedmen's Bureau and secured passage of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. He opposed the moderate Reconstruction policies of Pres. Andrew Johnson and introduced the resolution for his impeachment.
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Stevens, Thaddeus, visit Britannica.com.
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