Grimes, James Wilson

Cook, Robert J (2009) Grimes, James Wilson. In: Hudson, David, Bergman, Marvin and Horton, Loren (eds.) The Biographical Dictionary of Iowa. University of Iowa Press, Iowa City, pp. 196-199. ISBN 9781587296857

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Grimes, James Wilson – Iowa's leading Civil War-era politician — was born in Deering, New Hampshire. The scion of a prosperous yeoman farming family, he was relatively well educated at Hampton Academy and prestigious Dartmouth College. Despite his sharp intellect, a penchant for works of fiction and history, and a youthful embrace of evangelical Protestantism, he was not a diligent student and left Dartmouth in 1835 without graduating. Confronted with limited career prospects at home, he joined the Yankee diaspora in the West. By the spring of 1836 he had taken up residence in Burlington, Iowa, a small but typically ambitious settlement on the Mississippi River that would be his home for the rest of his life. Equipped with a critical mind, a retentive memory, and an innate self-confidence, he established a reputation for himself as a talented and sagacious lawyer, entering into partnership with Henry W. Starr in 1841. As the local economy began to expand, the practice proved to be a lucrative one. Along with heavy speculative investments in land and tax liens, it provided the imposing young man with a sound financial base on which to build a successful political career in the new state of Iowa.

Item Type: Book Section
Schools and Departments: School of History, Art History and Philosophy > American Studies
Subjects: E History America > E151 United States (General) > E0300 Revolution to the Civil War, 1775/1783-1861
E History America > E151 United States (General) > E0456 Civil War period, 1861-1865
E History America > E151 United States (General) > E0660 Late nineteenth century, 1865-1900
Depositing User: Library Cataloguing
Date Deposited: 25 May 2012 09:54
Last Modified: 30 Nov 2012 17:13
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