Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
James Williams (politician)
James was born to John (1775-1849), and Esther Williams on August 4, 1825 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. His father was a lumber merchant, and his early education was by private tutoring. He first became an apprentice carpenter, intending to become an architect. In 1848 his father bought a large estate in Kent County, Delaware, and James moved to Kenton to take up farming and manage the property.
Williams became politically active as a Democrat, and was twice elected to the state's House of Representatives, serving in 1857-1858 and 1863-1864. He next served in the state Senate from 1867 to 1870, and was the Speaker of the Senate for 1869 and 1870. In 1872, he was a delegate to the party's national convention which nominated Horace Greeley for U.S. President. Williams was twice elected as Delaware's only member in the United States House of Representatives, serving from 1875 to 1879.
James remained a farmer throughout his public service. After returning to private life he expanded into fertilizer manufacturing, and increased his farm holdings in Delaware and Maryland. In 1891 he moved to Smyrna, Delaware, but continued farming for the rest of his life. He lived quietly, and died at Smyrna on April 12, 1899. He is buried in St. Peter's Cemetery there.
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