Born in Fabius, New York, Pettit attended Hamilton College in Clinton, New York, and was graduated from Union College, Schenectady, New York, in 1839. He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1841 and commenced practice in Wabash, Indiana. Pettit served as American consul to Maranham, Brazil, from 1850 to 1853.
Pettit was elected as an Indiana People's Party candidate to the Thirty-fourth Congress and reelected as a Republican to the Thirty-fifth, and Thirty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1855 – March 3, 1861). He served as chairman of the Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department (Thirty-fourth Congress).
He died in Wabash, Indiana, March 21, 1881, and was interred in Falls Cemetery.
- United States Congress. "John U. Pettit (id: P000278)". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website http://bioguide.congress.gov.
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