John I. Rinaker
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John I. Rinaker
John I. Rinaker
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Illinois's 16th district

June 5, 1896 - March 3, 1897
Finis E. Downing
William H. Hinrichsen
Personal details
John Irving Rinaker

(1830-11-01)November 1, 1830
Baltimore, Maryland
DiedJanuary 15, 1915(1915-01-15) (aged 84)
Eustis, Florida
Political partyRepublican
Alma materMcKendree College
Military service
AllegianceUnited States of America
Branch/serviceUnited States Army
Union Army
Years of service1862-1865
RankUnion Army colonel rank insignia.png Colonel
Commands122nd Illinois Infantry Regiment
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War

John Irving Rinaker (November 1, 1830 – January 15, 1915) was a U.S. Representative from Illinois and a brigade commander in the Union Army during the American Civil War.


Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Rinaker moved with his parents to Springfield, Illinois, in December 1836. He attended the Illinois College for one term and graduated from McKendree College, Lebanon, Illinois, in 1851.

He subsequently studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1854 and commenced practice in Carlinville, Illinois.

With the outbreak of the Civil War he raised and organized the 122nd Regiment, Illinois Volunteer Infantry, in 1862 and was commissioned as its first colonel on September 4, 1862. He served in the Western Theater of the American Civil War and commanded a brigade in the XVI Corps of the Army of the Tennessee. In the omnibus promotions at the end of the war, he was brevetted brigadier general dating from March 13, 1865.

Rinaker served as delegate to the Republican National Conventions in 1876 and 1884 and then was chairman of the Board of Railroad and Warehouse Commissioners of Illinois 1885-1889. He successfully contested as a Republican the election of Finis E. Downing to the Fifty-fourth Congress and served from June 5, 1896, to March 3, 1897. He was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1896 to the Fifty-fifth Congress.

Rinaker returned to Carlinville, Illinois, and resumed the practice of law. He died in Eustis, Florida, January 15, 1915. He was interred in the City Cemetery, Carlinville, Illinois.


  • United States Congress. "John I. Rinaker (id: R000261)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

External links

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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