DE WOLF, James, (1764 - 1837)

Senate Years of Service: 1821-1825
Party: Democratic Republican; Crawford Republican

Courtesy U.S. Senate Historical Office

DE WOLF, James, a Senator from Rhode Island; born in Bristol, R.I., March 18, 1764; during the Revolutionary War shipped as a sailor on a private armed vessel; participated in several naval encounters and was twice captured by the enemy; before he was twenty years old became captain of a ship; engaged in extensive commercial ventures, principally trading in slaves, with Cuba and other West Indian islands; member, State house of representatives 1797-1801, 1803-1812; fitted out a privateer in the War of 1812; one of the pioneers in cotton manufacturing; built the Arkwright Mills in Coventry, R.I., in 1812; member, State house of representatives 1817-1821, and served as speaker 1819-1821; elected as a Democratic Republican (later Crawford Republican) to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1821, to October 31, 1825, when he resigned; member, State house of representatives 1829-1837; died in New York City December 21, 1837; interment in the De Wolf private cemetery, Woodlawn Avenue, Bristol, R.I.


Dictionary of American Biography.