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Benson, Stephen Allen

Born: 1816 AD
Died: 1865 AD
Nationality: Liberian
Categories: Politician, Presidents

1816 – Born on May 21st in Maryland. Liberian-American businessman and politician.

1822 – He and his family immigrated to Liberia.

1835 – He joined the militia and was stationed in Grand Bassa County; remained there after his service working in trade and agriculture.

1842 – Benson was first elected to office, winning a seat on the Colonial Council.

1853 – After Liberia gained its independence, he served as a judge until his election as Vice President.

1856 – Elected president of Liberia.

1857 – His biggest accomplishment was the annexation of the Colony of Maryland, now Maryland Country, into the Republic of Liberia.

1858-1864 – He also obtained the recognition of Liberia from the following countries: Belgium, Denmark, Italy, Norway and Sweden, and Haiti.

         – Benson was the first Liberian President to speak several native languages, favoring a progressive policy toward Liberia’s native peoples; regrettably, this policy remained largely unimplemented.

         – He left office and returned to his coffee plantation in Grand Bassa County.

1865 – Stephen Benson died.