Wilson - James - Montgomery InGenWeb Project

Go to content

Wilson - James

Source: James Wilson, 1860 Madison Twp #23 census age 53 Farmer 4000/800 Nicholas (female) 53; Margaret 19 Ind Thomas 17 Ind. 1870 Madison Twp #7 Thomas Wilson 26 Farmer 6000/; Ind James 63 Farmer b. Scotland.
Source: 1874 People's Guide Madison Twp J. Farmer 1 1/2 Mi. SW Linden b. Scotland came to MC 1834 b. Scotland 1807 Presbyterian.
1880 Madison Twp #55 Wilson, James 73 Farmer Scotland Scot Scot Lydia 64 Md Md Md.

Source: A W Bowen History of Montgomery County, Indiana.. Indianapolis  1913: pp 592
Hon. James WILSON, a distinguished lawyer and brilliant orator  of the state of Indiana, was born at Crawfordsville, Indiana, on  April 9, 1825. He was the first white male child born in  Montgomery County. At his birth all that vast territory north of  Montgomery County, reaching to Lake Michigan, was called the  Wabash country. James Wilson was the oldest son of John and  Margaret Wilson, early pioneers of Crawfordsville. He graduated  from Wabash college in 1842, at the age of seventeen years. He  read law in the office of Gen. Tilgman H. HOWARD, of Rockville,  Indiana, but was compelled to wait until he was twenty-one years  of age to be admitted to the bar. About the time of his admission  to the bar, the Mexican war began. He at once enlisted as private  soldier and at the close of the war returned home an officer.  Immediately on his return he began to practice law at  Crawfordsville. The bar at that time in western Indiana was  particularly strong, being composed of such men as Gen. Tilgman  H. Howard, of Rockville, Edward A. HENNEGAN, of Covington, and  Henry S. LANE, of Crawfordsville. James Wilson, young as he was,  gifted to a high degree with vast talents and great powers of  eloquence, did not wait long for a standing, but at once jumped,  meteor-like, to the head of his chosen profession. He became a  leader, and his superiority to all was conceded. He swayed juries  at his will and held vast audiences entranced by the powers of  his eloquence.
In politics Mr. Wilson was a Republican and an Abolitionist.  In 1856 James Wilson was nominated for Congress in the ninth  congressional district of Indiana, his competitor being Daniel W.  VORHEES . The campaign was a joint one and attracted attention  throughout the state. Such were Mr. Wilson's powers of eloquence  and vast information of all the questions of the day, that he far  outdistanced his competitor and was triumphantly elected.  Entering Congress he at once engaged in debate with such men as  Alexander H. STEVENS of Georgia and other southern leaders and  they found in him a foeman worthy of their steel, equal and ready  at all times to defend the rights of the North.
In 1858 Mr. Wilson was unanimously renominated and elected.  During his second term in Congress, he engaged in the great  debates of that day with many men who afterwards became famous.  Near the close of his second term in Congress he delivered a  speech "On the State of the Nation," which was considered a  masterpiece of eloquence and statesmanship. At the close of his  second term in Congress the Civil war began. Mr. Wilson was  tendered a third nomination, but refused it and, casting aside  his congressional career, he made a great speech at  Crawfordsville and in his closing remarks said: "I will ask no  man to go where I will not go myself."
Mr. Wilson signed his name as a private soldier, but a man of  such superior ability was not destined long to remain in the  ranks. Mr. Wilson was immediately appointed an officer by  President Lincoln and made post quartermaster of the state of  Indiana. He was afterwards commissioned major-lieutenant colonel-  and at the close of the Civil war was honorably mustered out,  holding the rank of colonel, A.D.C. He cast aside his uniform and  returned to his home in Crawfordsville, to begin anew the  practice of his profession, but was not destined to remain there  long. He was requested by the President of the United States to  become minister to Venezuela, South America; to draw a treaty  between that government and the government of the United States,  in regards to the adjustment of complicated claims then existing.  Mr. Wilson, being a fine international lawyer, accepted the  appointment, went to Venezuela and drew the treaty, which was  ratified by the Venezuelan government and the government of the  United States. Mr. Wilson then desired to return home and again  enter Congress. All of the his family had returned home, but he  remained at Caracas to meet General Talmage of New York, who was  to be his successor in office. Suddenly he was taken sick and  died alone in a foreign land in 1867, at the age of forth-two  years.
Thus a great man perished and a brilliant leader ceased to be.  A prince of Israel hath departed and may his memory ever  remain.
Hon. James Wilson married Emma INGERSOLL of Crawfordsville,  and to them four children were born. One daughter died in  infancy, John L. Wilson of Seattle, Washington, ex-Senator from  that state, and Tilghman Howard Wilson of Spokane Falls,  Washington, are now deceased. One son is surviving, Henry Lane  Wilson of Spokane Falls, Washington, at the present time  Ambassador to Mexico.
Submitted by Harry Bounell February 2002

James Wilson (1825-1867) Son of John Wilson; father of John  Lockwood Wilson. Born in Crawfordsville, Montgomery County, Ind.,  April 9, 1825. Republican. Served in the U.S. Army during the  Mexican War; U.S. Representative from Indiana 8th District,  1857-61; colonel in the Union Army during the Civil War; U.S.  Minister to Venezuela, 1866-67, died in office 1867. Died in  Caracas, Venezuela, August 8, 1867. Interment at Oak Hill  Cemetery. See also: congressional biography. (The Political  Graveyard)
WILSON, James, 1825-1867
Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
WILSON, James, (father of John Lockwood Wilson), a  Representative from Indiana; born in Crawfordsville, Montgomery  County, Ind., April 9, 1825; was graduated from Wabash College,  Crawfordsville, Ind., in 1842; studied law; was admitted to the  bar in 1848 and commenced practice in Crawfordsville, Ind.;  served in the Mexican War from June 17, 1846, to June 16, 1847;  during the Civil War was appointed captain of Volunteers November  26, 1862, and honorably discharged December 6, 1865, as brevet  lieutenant colonel; elected as a Republican to the Thirty-fifth  and Thirty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1857-March 3, 1861);  Minister to Venezuela from 1866 until his death in Caracas,  Venezuela, August 8, 1867; interment in Oak Hill Cemetery,  Crawfordsville, Ind.

Citation: The Indiana GenWeb Project, Copyright  ©1997-2018 & Beyond... Montgomery County  Website http://www.ingenweb.org/inmontgomery/
Back to content