Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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GARRISON, Cornelius Kingsland, capitalist, born in Fort Montgomery, near West Point, New York, 1 March, 1809; died in New York City, 1 May, 1885. He studied architecture and civil engineering while working on his father's schooner, and also acquired a taste for navigation. In 1830 he removed to Buffalo, where he was employed as a builder, and in 1834 went to Canada, and while there was principally engaged in building bridges and in marine architecture. In 1839 he settled in St. Louis and acquired a fortune from the boats that he built, owned, and commanded. In 1852 he went to Panama and established the banking-house of Garrison, Fritz, and Ralston, and at the same time became agent of the Nicaragua steamship company. In 1856 he was elected mayor of San Francisco, and while there originated the movement that led to the organization of the Pacific snail steamship company. At the end of his term as mayor he was presented by the citizens with a service of forty pieces of California gold. In 1859 he removed to New York and became a financier and speculator. During the civil war Mr. Garrison placed many of his ships at the disposal of the government. He was largely interested in the Pacific railroad of Missouri, which, becoming involved, was sold under foreclosure in 1876. Mr. Garrison was elected president of the reorganized road (now the Missouri Pacific), and out of this reorganization arose the Marie-Garrison suit for $5,000,000, which, after ten years, was decided adversely to Mr. Garrison. In June, 1884, he made an assignment, but his assets were largely in excess of his liabilities.
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