TANNER, John Riley, American soldier and statesman: b. Warwick County, Ind., 4 April 1844; d. Springfield, III., 23 May 1901. He enlisted in the 98th Illinois volunteers in 1863, and was with Sherman's army during its active campaign in Georgia, Tennessee and Alabama. Returning to Illinois after the war, he engaged in farming and selling fruit trees, entered politics in 1870, as Republican candi date for sheriff, was elected, and held there after the offices of circuit clerk 1872-76, State senator 1880-83, United States marshal 1883 85, State treasurer 1886-88, assistant United States treasurer, Chicago, 1892-93 governor of Illinois 1896-1900. He was the recognized leader of the Republican party in Illinois, was the first in Illinois to speak openly for a single gold standard, declaring himself thereon early in 1895, and as governor his administration was able, efficient and economical. Immediately
after the blowing up of the Maine in Havana Harbor, he secured the passage of resolutions in the legislature, tendering to the national government the material and moral support of Illinois in the event of war with Spain, and within 36 hours after the call for troops he had mobilized 10,000 men at Springfield, thus procuring for Illinois the honor of having the first regiment ready for muster into the na tional service. His vigorous stand against the importation of contract labor under arms at the time of the Virden riots brought about a storm of protests that his acts were without precedent and unconstitutional. These were met with the answer that he would make pre cedents and construe the Constitution and the law for the welfare of the State.