Member Biography

William Davidson 

Sessions Office Position District Party
1818-1819       17 Democrat
1819-1820       17 Democrat
1820-1821       17 Democrat
1821-1822       17 Democrat

COUNTIES: Fayette  


02/14/1783 - 03/02/1867

William Davidson (Democrat17) Fayette County 1818-1822 

Early Life:

William Davidson, born February 14, 1783, Carlisle, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania; surveyor, farmer, merchandiser, Cumberland County; prothonotary, Cumberland County; moved, Connellsville, 1808; engaged, ironworking; prisoner of war, War of 1812, married, Sarah Rogers Blackstone, 1813, children, Thomas R. Davidson, William H. Davidson, John R. Davidson, Colonel Daniel Rogers Davidson, Sarah Davidson; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania House of Representatives 1814-1818, elected, 52nd Speaker of the Pennsylvania House, 1817; elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1818-1822; died, March 2, 1867, Connellsville, Fayette County, Pennsylvania; interment, Hill Grove Cemetery, Connellsville, Fayette County, Pennsylvania. 

Early Career:

Engaged, ironworking, manager, Laurel Ironworks; ironmaster at Finley Furnace and Iron Works (also referred to as Breakneck Furnace) Fayette County, Pennsylvania.

Served under General William Hull, War of 1812, taken prisoner of war, August 16, 1812, at the surrender of General Hull during the Battle of Detroit.  

Pennsylvania Politics:

Prothonotary, Cumberland County.

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania House of Representatives, 1814-1818; elected, 52nd Speaker of the Pennsylvania House, December 2, 1817. As Speaker, signed, Act 30 of 1818, which established a Health Office aimed at securing the city and Port of Philadelphia from the introduction of pestilential and contagious diseases.  This was a significant undertaking in an era of evolving public health techniques and quarantine precautions for maritime trade.

Elected, Democrat, Pennsylvania State Senate, 17th district, Fayette County, 1818-1822.

Pennsylvania Speaker of House of Representatives Biography:

William Davidson - PA House of Representatives - PA House of Representatives ( 


Cox, Harold. "Senate Members D"Wilkes University Election Statistics Project. Wilkes University.

Journal of the Senate of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Report). Vol. 34. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania: Christian Sleim. 1823. page 4. 

#7 - Journal. 1823-24 v.34. - Full View | HathiTrust Digital Library

William Davidson (1783-1867) - Find a Grave Memorial