WILSON, James, (1797 - 1881)


WILSON, James, (son of James Wilson [1766-1839]), a Representative from New Hampshire; born in Peterboro, N.H., March 18, 1797; attended the academies at New Ipswich, Atkinson, and Exeter; moved with his parents to Keene, N.H., in 1815; was graduated from Middlebury College in 1820; member of the State militia 1820-1840 and successively promoted from captain to major general; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1823 and commenced practice in Keene, Cheshire County, N.H.; member of the State house of representatives 1825-1837, 1840, and 1846, and served as speaker in 1828; unsuccessful candidate for Governor in 1835 and 1838; delegate to the Whig National Convention in 1840; surveyor general of public lands in the Territories of Wisconsin and Iowa 1841-1845; elected as a Whig to the Thirtieth and Thirty-first Congresses and served from March 4, 1847, to September 9, 1850, when he resigned; chairman, Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department (Thirtieth Congress); appointed one of the commissioners to settle private land claims in California in 1851 and served in this capacity until 1853; settled in San Francisco and remained there until 1867, when he returned to Keene, N.H.; again a member of the State house of representatives in 1871 and 1872; died in Keene, N.H., May 29, 1881; interment in Woodland Cemetery.