Folger, Charles James

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Charles James Folger (fōl´jər), 1818–84, U.S. Secretary of the Treasury (1881–84), b. Nantucket, Mass. A lawyer of Geneva, N.Y., he held judicial posts and was (1861–69) a state senator. Opposition to slavery caused him to turn from the Democratic to the Republican party, but in 1870 he was the candidate of both parties for the post of associate justice of the state court of appeals—a post he held (except when chief justice briefly in 1880) until he entered President Arthur's cabinet. He reduced the public debt and initiated civil service administration in the Treasury Department.