Joseph P. Woolman, 10th U.S. Marshal, District of Montana (ref: 945-689)

Photograph courtesy of Montana Historical Society Photograph Archives


Joseph P. Woolman, 10th U.S. Marshal, District of Montana

Joseph P. Woolman was born in Woodstown, Salem County, New Jersey on February 5th, 1841. The son of a Quaker farmer and leather manufacturer, Woolman worked on the farm until the age of nineteen. He attended the Pennsylvania Normal School at Millersville and then spent a year teaching in New Jersey. Woolman then moved to Philadelphia and worked as a salesman of dry goods. In 1864, he moved west to Salt Lake City, Utah and spent the winter teaching. In June, 1865 Woolman moved to Helena, Montana and worked as a placer miner on Last Chance Gulch. In 1876, he represented Montana Territory at the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, and was appointed Commissioner to the 1878 Paris Exposition. In 1879, Woolman was appointed Montana Territorial Auditor and he served in that position until 1887. From 1889 until 1897 Woolman was the Treasurer for the J. Gould Mining Co. in Helena. An active member of the Republican Party, Woolman served as the chairman of the Republican territorial central committee and then served as the chairman Montana Republican state central committee from 1898 to 1899.

In 1897, President William McKinley appointed Woolman U.S. Marshal for the District of Montana and served in that official capacity until 1903. He then returned to private life in the cattle and sheep business until his death on September 19, 1908 in Philadelphia.

1) History of Montana, Joaquin Miller, 1894, pp: 59 - 60.

2) Mss 340, K. Ross Toole Archives, Maureen & Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana, Missoula.