Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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HOLMES, Isaac Edward, statesman, born in Charleston, South Carolina, 6 April, 1796; died there, 24 February, 1867. He was prepared for college by his cousin, Christopher E. Gadsden, and graduated at Yale in 1815, was admitted to the bar in Charleston in 1818, and became a successful lawyer. He entered the legislature in 1826. and during the nullification crisis of 1832-'8 was a leader of the extreme state rights party, and one of the founders of the South Carolina association. The proposition that the state should nullify the tariff first emanated from him. He engaged in planting for a time. In 1838 he was sent to congress, and was an active member of the house till 1850, serving as chairman of the committee on commerce, and afterward of that on naval affairs. He then removed to California, and practised law from 1851 till January, 1861, when, on learning of the passage of the ordinance of secession, he returned to South Carolina. He passed through Washington, and, in several interviews with William H. Seward and General Winfield Scott, endeavored to avert the civil war. After the close of hostilities he was appointed a commissioner of the state to confer with the Federal government. He was the author of the "Recreations of George Taletell," consisting of stories, essays, and descriptive sketches (Charleston, 1822), and, in conjunction with Robert J. Turnbull, published a volume of political essays in favor of state rights, under the signature of "Caroliniensis" (1826).
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