Who's Who - Lindley Garrison

Painting of Lindley Garrison Lindley Miller Garrison (1864-1932) served as U.S. President Wilson's Secretary of War at a time when general war broke out in Europe.

Born on 28 November 1864 in Camden, New Jersey Garrison was educated at public schools and the Protestant Episcopal Academy in Philadelphia prior to attending Harvard as a special student in 1884.

Having left Harvard Garrison studied law in Philadelphia before receiving a law degree from the University of Pennsylvania.  He was subsequently admitted to the bar in 1886.  He spent the succeeding years in legal practice while serving as vice-chancellor of New Jersey from 1904-13.  It was in this capacity that he first came to the attention of then-Governor Woodrow Wilson.

With Wilson's ascent to the Presidency in 1912 he appointed Garrison his Secretary of War in March 1913.  In this capacity Garrison worked to prepare the U.S. for potential war given the current state of unrest in Europe, proposing the establishment of a federal reserve force to support the regular army.

Regarded as something of a hawk by many, including Wilson, Garrison's determination to ensure U.S. readiness should war present itself placed him at odds with his President.  He resigned on 10 February 1916 following continuing disagreement with Wilson over the establishment of the reserve force and was replaced by the markedly more pacifist Newton Baker.

Out of office Garrison returned to legal practice with Hornblower, Miller & Garrison.  In December 1918 he was appointed receiver to the Brooklyn Rapid Transit Company, serving until June 1923.

He died in Seabright, New Jersey on 19 October 1932 at the age of 67.

A "salient" is a battle line that projects into territory nominally held by enemy forces.

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