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Francis Burton Harrison earned his law degree from New York Law School in 1897. He taught law, served in the Spanish–American War, and was elected to Congress as a Democrat, serving from 1903 to 1905 and from 1907 to 1912. The Harrison Narcotics Act (1914), which he espoused, laid the basis for the later Pure Food and Drug Act.

A vigorous anti-imperialist and opponent of “Dollar Diplomacy,” he was appointed by Pres. Woodrow Wilson to ameliorate U.S. governance of the Philippines. In Manila, as governor general, he declared the Democratic Party’s intention to seek independence for the Philippines and locally introduced a number of reforms, that brought more Filipinos into responsible administrative positions and added other elements of self-government.

He enlisted as a private in Troop A, N.Y. Volunteer Cavalry in the Spanish-American War & on discharge was an Asst. Adjutant General, with the rank of Captain.


Philippines, US Congress, Congress, Harrison Narcotics Act, later Pure Food & Drug Act, N.Y. Volunteer Cavalry, Spanish-American War, Military