Skip to main content

Broderick, David Colbreth

David Colbreth Broderick (brō´dərĬk), 1820–59, American politician, b. Washington, D.C. Brought up in New York City, he was active in Tammany Hall before moving to California in 1849. He became equally active in politics there, being a member of the state constitutional convention of 1849. He was elected to the state senate in 1850 and was chosen to preside over it in 1851. Broderick, who drew his support chiefly from Northerners, fought bitterly for control of the Democratic party in the state against U.S. Senator William M. Gwin, leader of the proslavery element. Both were sent to the U.S. Senate in 1857 under a compromise by which Broderick was to have control of the federal patronage. However, President Buchanan and Gwin ignored the understanding, and Broderick fiercely attacked them both. He was killed by Chief Justice David S. Terry of the California supreme court, a supporter of Gwin, in a famous duel near San Francisco. An eloquent eulogy at his elaborate funeral and editorial reverberations throughout the land made him the martyr of the Union cause in California.

See biographies by J. Lynch (1911) and D. A. Williams (1969).

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Broderick, David Colbreth." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . 19 Dec. 2018 <>.

"Broderick, David Colbreth." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . (December 19, 2018).

"Broderick, David Colbreth." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved December 19, 2018 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.