U.S. Senate, 1871 Election


Date: January 17, 1871
Cycle: 1871
Office: U.S. Senate
State: Minnesota
District: Statewide
Candidate Gender Party Votes Percent Margin
Ozora P. (O.P.) Stearns Man Republican 44 73.33 +51.67
Eugene M. Wilson Man Democrat 13 21.67
Amos Coggswell Man Democrat 2 3.33
Ignatius Donnelly Man Democrat 1 1.67

Elected by the state legislature with each chamber voting separately. Special election to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Repubilcan U.S. Senator Daniel Norton on July 13, 1870. Stearns was the only candidate nominated in the state House and received a unanimous vote in the state Senate of all 13 members present. Stearns won 31 of 47 votes in the state House with 13 for Wilson, two for Coggswell, and one for Donnelly. The legislature declared Stearns the duly elected U.S. Senator in a joint convention on January 18, 1871.

Stearns was an attorney and former Mayor of Rochester (1866-1868).

Wilson was an attorney from Minneapolis and sitting U.S. Representative (CD 02, 1869-1871) who would later serve as Mayor of Minneapolis (1872, 1874) and in the state Senate (SD 27, 1879-1881).

Coggswell was a former Republican state Representative (HD 15, 1859-1861) and Democratic nominee for Secretary of State in 1865 and 1867.

Donnelly was a former Republican Lieutenant Governor (1860-1863) and U.S. Representative (HD 02, 1863-1869).


  • Journal of the Senate of the Thirteenth Session of the Legislature of the State of Minnesota, 1871 (p. 30). Journal of the House of Representatives of the Thirteenth Session of the Legislature of the State of Minnesota, 1871 (p. 38, 46).