Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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DEARBORN, Henry, soldier, born in North Hampton, New Hampshire, 23 February 1751; died in Roxbury, Massachusetts, 6 June 1829. After studying medicine, he began its practice at Nottingham Square in 1772. Having employed his leisure in the study of the art of war, he set out on the day after the battle of Lexington for Cambridge, at the head of sixty minutemen, reaching that place early the next day. On his return he was appointed captain in Stark's regiment, and subsequently took part in the battle of Bunker Hill, where he covered the retreat of the American forces. In September he accompanied Arnold's expedition to Canada, but was for some time seriously ill. He recovered in time to assist in the attack on Quebec, 31 December where he was made prisoner. He was released on parole in May 1776, and exchanged in March 1777, when he was appointed major in Scammell's regiment. He fought in the battles of Stillwater, Saratoga, Monmouth, and Newtown, distinguishing himself at Monmouth by a successful charge. In 1781 he joined Washington's staff as deputy quartermaster general, with the rank of colonel, and served at the siege of Yorktown. In June 1784, he took up his residence at Monmouth, Maine He was chosen brigadier general of militia in 1787, and major general in 1795.
In 1789 he was appointed U. S. marshal for Maine. He was elected to the 3d congress as a democrat, and reelected to the 4th, serving from 1793 till 1797. President Jefferson appointed him secretary of war, which office he occupied from 1801 till 1809 in the latter year President Madison gave him the collectorship of the port of Boston, which place he filled until appointed senior major general in the U. S. army, 27 January 1812, and assigned to the command of the Northern Department. He succeeded in capturing York (now Toronto) on 27 April 1813, and Fort George on 27 May following. On 6 July he was recalled, on the ostensible ground of impaired health, but really in consequence of being charged with political intrigue, and placed in command of the City of New York. His request for a court of inquiry was not granted. He served from 7 May 1822, till 30 June 1824, as minister to Portugal, when he offered his resignation, which was accepted. He then settled at Roxbury, Massachusetts, where he spent the remainder of his life, paying annual visits to his farm in Maine. In person he was large and commanding, frank in his manners, and remarkable for his integrity. He published an account of the battle of Bunker Hill, and wrote a journal of his expedition to Canada, imprisonment in Quebec, and other adventures.
His son, Henry Alexander Scammell, lawyer, born in Exeter, New Hampshire, 3 March 1783; died in Portland, Maine, 29 July 1851. He was graduated at William and Mary College in 1803, and studied law with Judge Story in Salem, Massachusetts, where for a short time he practiced. He succeeded his father in 1812 as collector of the port of Boston, filling that office until 1829. He superintended the forts at Portland, and was appointed brigadier general of militia, commanding the defenses of Boston harbor, in 1812. He was a member of the State constitutional convention of 1820, of the state House of Representatives in 1829, and of the state senate in 1830. He served in congress from 5 Dec.. 1831, till 2 March 1833, and acted as adjutant general of Massachusetts from 1834 till 1843, when he was removed for loaning the state arms to the state of Rhode Island, to be used in suppressing the Dorr rebellion. He also served as mayor of Roxbury, Massachusetts, in 1847'51, being reelected annually. He was a strenuous advocate of internal improvements, the construction of the Great Western railroad of Massachusetts and the tunneling of Hoosac mountain being largely due to his labors. He was fond of horticulture and landscape gardening, and the cemeteries of Roxbury and Mount Auburn owe much to his taste, industry, and skill. He constantly led a busy public life, and his literary activity was very great, although but few of his works have been published. Among these are " Memoir on the Black Sea, Turkey, and Egypt," with charts (3 vols., Boston, 1819); " Letters on the Internal Improvements and Commerce of the West" (Boston, 1839); and "History of Navigation and Naval Architecture" (2 vols.). His manuscript remains include a "Diary "; a "Life of Major General Dearborn"; " Life of Com. Bainbridge"; "Life of Jesus Christ "; and " Writings on Horticulture." See " Address on Henry Dearborn," by Daniel Goodwin (Chicago, 1884).
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