George S. Boutwell, Radical Republican, 1865

In the film “Lincoln,” during the scene in which the roll is being called for votes for and against the adoption of a Constitutional amendment to ban slavery, I couldn’t help wondering who was representing Lowell in the US Congress at that moment. According to the ever-useful “Cotton Was King” history of Lowell (1976, Lowell Historical Society), the Representative in Congress “from the Lowell District” was the staunch abolitionist George S. Boutwell, who had been postmaster of Groton and twice elected Governor of Massachusetts (1851 and 1852). He served in Congress from 1863 to 1869 and was later appointed Secretary of the Treasury by President U.S. Grant, followed by election as a US Senator from Massachusetts. He is buried in Groton, and his former home is the office of the Groton Historical Society.

Congressman Boutwell was a “YES” vote on the 13th amendment.

The comprehensive Wikipedia entry on Boutwell can be read here.