Member Biography

Jacob Cassat 

Sessions Office Position District Party
1837-1838       14 Whig
1838-1839       14 Whig


02/07/1778 - 12/24/1838

Jacob Cassat (Whig14) Adams, Cumberland, Franklin Counties 1837-1838

Early Life:

Jacob Cassat, born February 7, 1778, Conewago Township, Adams County, Pennsylvania; son of David Sarah Van Duyn Cassat; no formal schooling; married, Mary McConaughy, 1806, children, Sarah Cassat Neely, Hannah Finley Cassat Neely, Elizabeth Armstrong Cassat Wallace, Margaret Cassat; elected, Adams County Commissioner, 1805; assisted in the defense of Baltimore, 1814; elected, Federalist, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1820-1824; unsuccessful campaign Pennsylvania State Senate, 1824; elected, Whig, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1837-1838; died, in office, December 24, 1838 (aged 60), Gettysburg, Adams County, Pennsylvania Interment, Great Conewago Presbyterian Church Cemetery, Straban Township, Adams County, Pennsylvania.

Early Career:

Elder, Presbyterian Church, organized, so far as is known, the first Sunday-school in Adams County outside of Gettysburg, and became its superintendent.

Pennsylvania Politics:

Commissioner, Adams County Pennsylvania, 1805.

Elected, Federalist, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, Adams County, 1820-1824.

Unsuccessful campaign Pennsylvania State Senate, 14th district, Adams York Counties, 1824.

Elected, Whig, Pennsylvania State Senate, 14th district, Adams Cumberland, Franklin Counties, 1837-1838. 


On the night of December 23, 1838, on what is known in the history of Pennsylvania, as the “buckshot war,” he made an impassioned appeal against mob rule, and with others was driven from the Senate chamber at the risk of his life.  The next morning, December 24, 1838, he was found dead in his bed. 


Cox, Harold "Senate Members "C"Wilkes University Election Statistics ProjectWilkes University.

A New Nation Votes (

Jacob Cassat (1778-1838) - Find a Grave Memorial