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Benjamin Alden Bidlack

<em><b>Born</b> September 8, 1804 - <b>Died</b> February 6, 1849</em>

Benjamin Alden Bidlack was an American politician and diplomat.

Bidlack was born on September 8th, 1804 in Paris, New York. His family moved to Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania where he attended school. He graduated from Wilkes-Barre Academy. After graduating he began to study law.

In 1825, Bidlack passed the bar. That same year he was elected as the district attorney of Luzene County, Pennsylvania.

In 1830 Bidlack moved to Milford, Pennsylvania. In 1834 he served as Pike County treasurer.

In 1835 Bidlack returned to Wilkes-Barre. That same year he was elected to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. He would serve from 1835 to 1836. He was also the editor of the Republican Farmer and the Democratic Journal in Wilkes-Barre.

In 1840, Bidlack was elected to the United States House of Representatives as a Democrat. He served in the twenty-seventh and twenty-eight Congresses.

In 1845 Bidlack was appointed Chargé d'Affaires for Columbia, a temporary diplomatic posting to replace an ambassador. There he successfully negotiated the Treaty of New Granada. At the time New Granada encompassed what is modern day Colombia and Panama. One of the big items in the treaty allowed the United States to build a railroad or canal through the Isthmus of Panama.

Bidlack passed away on February 6th, 1849.

Bidlack was a member of Lodge No. 61 in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.