Member Biography

Simon Snyder 

Sessions Office Position District Party
1818-1819       9 Democratic-Republican
1819-1820       9 Democratic-Republican


11/05/1759 - 11/09/1819

Simon Snyder (Democratic-Republican9) Columbia, Luzerne, Northumberland, Susquehanna and Union Counties 1818-1820

Early Life:

Simon Snyder, born November 5, 1759, Lancaster, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania; son of Anthony and Mary Elizabeth Knippenberg Snyder; education by attending night classes at a Society of Friends (Quakers) school, York, Pennsylvania; tanner; opened a store and gristmill, Selinsgrove, Pennsylvania, 1784; justice of the peace, Penn Township, 17841-1796; delegate, Pennsylvania State Constitution Convention, 1789-1790; married, Elizabeth Michael, 1790 (d.1794), children, Amelia, John;  married, Catherine Antes, children, Henry W., George A., Philip F., Antes, (another child, also named Antes, died in childbirth), married, Mary Slough Scott, 1814; elected, Democratic-Republican, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, 1797-1808, Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, 1803-1808; unsuccessful campaign, Governor, 1805; elected, Democratic-Republican, 3rd Governor of Pennsylvania, 1808-1817; elected, Democratic-Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate, 1818-1819; died, November 9, 1819 (aged 60), in office of Senate, typhoid fever, Selinsgrove, Union County (now Snyder County), Pennsylvania; interment, Old Lutheran Cemetery, Selinsgrove, Snyder County, Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania Politics: 

Justice of the peace, Penn Township, 1784-1796. 

Delegate, Pennsylvania State Constitution Convention, 1789-1790.

Elected, Democratic-Republican, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives, Northumberland County, 1797-1808; following, resignation of Isaac Weaver, Jr., March 1, 1803, elected the 42nd Speaker of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives; December 6, 1803, re-elected for a full term as Speaker for the 1803-1804 session; reelected Speaker, December 4, 1804, for the 1804-1805 session; December 2, 1806, for the 1806-1807 session, as well as on December 1, 1807, for the 1807-1808 session; during his Speakership, Cambria County was created with Act 16 of 1807; January 14, 1808, in his capacity as Speaker, wrote a letter to Thomas Jefferson pledging the allegiance of the Commonwealth’s Representatives to the nation in the struggle against Great Britain.  

Unsuccessful campaign, Governor, defeating by incumbent Governor Thomas McKean, 1805.  

Elected, Democratic-Republican, 3rd Governor of Pennsylvania, 1808-1817; Snyder signed Act 29 of 1810, which he signed in 1812; called for the official state capital to be moved from Lancaster to Harrisburg. Throughout his governorship, Snyder wrestled with issues of state versus Federal sovereignty, a controversial issue in early 19th century American politics. He was also responsible for directing the state’s mobilization during the War of 1812.

Elected, Democratic-Republican, Pennsylvania State Senate, 9th district, Columbia, Luzerne, Northumberland, Susquehanna and Union Counties, 1818-1820; died, November 9, 1819 (aged 60), in office of Senate, during the 1819-1820 session, typhoid fever, replaced by Robert Willett.

Pennsylvania Speaker of House of Representatives Biography:

Simon Snyder - PA House of Representatives - PA House of Representatives (


Son, John Snyder, United States House of Representatives, 27th Congress, 1841-1843.

His house at Selinsgrove, known as the Governor Simon Snyder Mansion, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, 1978; now Selin’s Grove Brewing Company, up for sale after pandemic.

Sy Snyder is a pseudonym for the publishers of PoliticsPA, a website dedicated to Pennsylvania politics.

Snyder County, Pennsylvania, formed on March 2, 1855, named in his honor. 

Snyder Avenue, South Philadelphia, named in his honor.

Snyder Residence Hall, Penn State University, State College, named in his honor.

Act of April 12, 1921, P.L. 123, No. 73, Providing for the establishment of Snyder-Middleswarth State Park, Bald Eagle State Forest in Spring Township, Snyder County, Pennsylvania. Named for two Pennsylvania politicians: Simon Snyder and Ner Middleswarth. Lost its status as a state park sometime between 1992-1996, becoming just a Snyder-Middleswarth Natural Area within the state forest system. 1921 Act 73 (

As of 2024 remains the only Pennsylvania governor from Snyder County.


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

A New Nation Votes (

Simon Snyder - National Governors Association (

Governor Simon Snyder | PHMC > Pennsylvania Governors (

Pushing Pennsylvania Through The War of 1812 - Governor Simon Snyder (

Simon Snyder (1759-1819) - Find a Grave Memorial