Louis Mclane, an American statesman, born at Smyrna, Kent co., Del., May 28, 1786, died in Baltimore, Oct. 7, 1857. He was the son of Allen McLane, a distinguished revolutionary officer. He entered the navy in 1798, and served as a midshipman in the Philadelphia under the elder Decatur; but he afterward studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1808. During the war with England he served as a volunteer in a company which marched to the defence of Baltimore in 1814. He was representative in congress from the state of Delaware from 1817 to 1827, when he was chosen senator. In May, 1829, he was appointed by President Jackson minister to Great Britain, which post he held for two years, and on his return home was made secretary of the treasury. In 1833 he declined to sanction the removal of the deposits from the United States bank, and was consequently transferred by the president to the state department. He held the office of secretary of state till June, 1834, when he resigned and retired from political life. In 1837 he accepted the presidency of the Baltimore and Ohio railroad, which he held till 1847. In June, 1845, he was appointed by President Polk ambassador to London during the pendency of the Oregon negotiations, after the settlement of which he resigned.
In 1850 he was a member of the convention to reform the constitution of Maryland, which was his last public service. While in congress he voted against the admission of slavery into the territories, although his course was in opposition to the views of his constituents.