John P. Elkin






Elkin Mausoleum

John P. Elkin was an attorney and political figure who served in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives (1885-1887), as Attorney General of Pennsylvania (1899-1903), and as an Associate Justice of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court (1905-1915). He and members of his family are at rest the in the recently-restored Elkin Mausoleum. This classical structure suggests the family’s prominence within the Indiana Community and is a signature memorial in the Oakland Cemetery..
John Elkin was the son of Francis and Elizabeth Pratt Elkin. The family moved to the farming village of Smicksburg in 1869, where Elkin received a rudimentary education. In 1873, the family moved to Wellsville, Ohio, where his father opened a tin-plate factory, where Elkin worked while in his early teens. In 1875, the factory failed, and the family moved back to Smicksburg. Elkin taught school there.
In 1881, Elkin studied law at the University of Michigan, graduating in 1884. He married Adda Prothero that summer and was elected to the State House that fall. Elkin was admitted to the Bar of Indiana County in 1885 and served two terms in the state House, 1885–86 and 1887–88. He was appointed Deputy Attorney General in 1895, a position he resigned from–under pressure–in 1897. He was also 1896 chairman of the state Republican committee, and had backed Senator Quay, the party’s “kingmaker,” for President. Elkin was appointed Attorney General in 1899.
In 1902, John Elkin tried to run for governor and expected to win the Republican nomination on the first ballot; but political boss Matthew Quay backed Judge Pennypacker and successfully bribed key Elkin supporters at the nominating convention. In 1904, a vacancy arose on the state’s Supreme Court. Governor Pennypacker was nominated by his party to run in the special election to fill the vacancy, but he declined. Elkin was then nominated and elected. Elkin served on the bench until his death on October 3, 1915. Justice Elkin died in a Philadelphia hospital. His funeral was conducted at Breezedale, the family home—now the Alumni center of IUP. The Elkin Mausoleum is available for tours with advance notice.

Copyright © 2024 Oakland Cemetery