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Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1887-1889 and 1999. Virtualology.com warns that these 19th Century biographies contain errors and bias. We rely on volunteers to edit the historic biographies on a continual basis. If you would like to edit this biography please submit a rewritten biography in text form . If acceptable, the new biography will be published above the 19th Century Appleton's Cyclopedia Biography citing the volunteer editor



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Joseph Dana

DANA, Joseph, clergyman, born in Pomfret, Connecticut, 2 November 1742; died in Ipswich, Massachusetts, 16 November 1827. He was a grandson of Benjamin, the third son of Richard, the progenitor of all that bear the name in the United States, who, according to the family tradition, was the son of a French Huguenot that settled in England in 1629. Joseph was graduated at Yale in 1760, studied theology, and was ordained on 7 November 1765, minister of the South society of Ipswich, over which he presided for sixty-two years. Many of his occasional discourses were published.

His grandson, Israel Thorndike, physician, born in Marblehead, Massachusetts, 6 June 1827, studied under his father, Samuel, who was minister of Marblehead, and in the academy of that town, attended medical lectures at Harvard, was graduated M. D. in 1850, and during the three following years studied medicine in New York City, Dublin, and Paris. In 1853 he settled in Portland, and gave special attention to diseases of the heart and lungs. He was one of the founders of the Portland school of medical instruction, and of the Maine general hospital, of which he has been attending physician since its opening in 1875. In 1860-'1 he was professor of materia medica, and in 1861-'9 of the theory and practice of medicine in the Medical school of Maine, connected with Bowdoin College. This chair he resumed in 1880. He has contributed to professional literature papers on the use of the stethoscope in determining the position of the fetus in uterus, on abortion, and on defective drainage and sewerage, and has published various addresses. He also prepared the articles on "Dropsy" and "Inflammation of the Intestines" in Wood's "Reference Hand-Book of the Medie Sciences." Sisters of Dr. Dana married Seth Ames, Jacob Abbott, and William R. Lawrence. Israel Thorndike was his uncle. Samuel, nephew of Joseph, clergyman, born in Cambridge (now Brighton), Massachusetts, 14 January 1739; died in Amherst, N. H., 1 April 1798, was graduated at Harvard in 1755, having among his classmates John Adams and Tristram Dalton, after which he studied theology. Ill 1761 the town of Groton invited him to become their minister "with a settlement of £200, a salary of £80, and firewood not to exceed thirty cords per annum." He accepted this call, and was installed on 3 June as successor to Caleb Trowbridge. During the troubles that proceeded the Revolutionary war, believing that resistance would lead to greater evils than were then endured, he used his influence on the side of non-resistance. This course gave great offence to his parishioners, who prevented him from entering the meetinghouse, although the Whig committee of Groton published a card to the effect that Mr. Dana had fully atoned for his offences. The good will of his people had become alienated, and his dismissal soon followed, he continued to reside in Groton, where he cultivated a small farm, and in 1780 preached to a separate society. On the death of John Bulkeley, he became executor of his will, and, removing the extensive law library to his own residence, he studied for that profession. Subsequently he was admitted to the bar and practiced in Amherst, New Hampshire, where in 1787 he was made judge of probate for Hillsborough County, and in 1793 was state senator.--His son, Samuel, lawyer, born in Groton, Massachusetts, 26 June 1767; died in Charlestown, 20 November 1825. He studied law, and became prominent in that profession in Charlestown, where he and Timothy Bigelow were professional and political rivals, Mr. Dana being a Jeffersonian democrat, and Mr. Bigelow a federalist. In his speeches at the bar he was smooth, gentle, and insinuating, as Mr. Bigelow was bold, rapid, and vehement. He filled various local offices, was a member of the Massachusetts senate, and its president for eight years, and served in congress from 22 September 1814, till 3 March. 1815. Subsequently he received the appointment of chief justice of the circuit court of common pleas. --James Freeman, nephew of Samuel and grandson of Samuel, chemist, born in Amherst, New Hampshire, 23 September 1793; died in New York City, 14 April 1827. He was graduated at Harvard in 1813, and at the medical department in 1817. He studied with Dr. John Gorham, and developed such ability that in 1815 he was selected by the authorities of Harvard to procure for the chemical laboratory a new outfit of apparatus. For this purpose he visited London, where for six months he worked in the laboratory of Friedrich Christian Aceum. On his return to the United States he settled in Cambridge, where he practiced medicine and was appointed assistant to the chair in chemistry. In 1817 he was invited to lecture on chemistry at Dartmouth, and in 1820 became the first professor of chemistry and mineralogy in that institution. He was chosen professor of chemistry in the College of physicians and surgeons in New York in 1825, and continued as such until his death. While a student in Cambridge, he received the Boylston prize for a dissertation on the " Tests for Arsenic," and again in 1817 received the same prize for an essay on the "Composition of Oxymuriatic Acid." He contributed numerous scientific memoirs to Silliman's "American Journal of Science" and to the "Annuls of the New York Lyceum of Natural History." His larger works are, with his brother, "Outlines of Mineralogy and Geology of Boston and its Vicinity" (Boston, 1818), and " Epitome of Chemical Philosophy" (Concord, New Hampshire, 1825).--His brother, Samuel Luther, chemist, born in Amherst, New Hampshire, 11 July 1795; died in Lowell, Massachusetts, 11 March 1868. He studied at Phillips Exeter academy, and was graduated at Harvard in 1813. Desirous of becoming a military engineer, he applied for an appointment to the U. S. military academy, but instead was commissioned a lieutenant in the 1st artillery. He served during the war in New York and Virginia, and at its close resigned from the army. Subsequently he studied medicine, and was graduated at Harvard medical school in 1818. From 1819 till 1826 he practiced in Waltham, Massachusetts, where he was brought into intimate relations with the early cotton manufacturers of the state, and his fondness for physical science determined him to devote his attention to chemistry as applied to the manufacture and coloring of cotton goods. About 1-826 he established a laboratory in Waltham for the manufacture of sulphuric acid and bleaching-salts, which afterward was merged in the Newton chemical company, and he was its chemist until 1834. In 1833 he visited Europe, and spent some time in England prosecuting chemical investigations. On his return he removed to Lowell, where he became resident and consulting chemist to the Merrimack manufacturing company, and continued as such until his death. His investigation in the bleaching of cotton led to the invention of the so-called "American system" of bleaching, which attracted much attention abroad when first published in 1838 in the "Bulletin de la socidte industrielle de Mulhouse." Many other important improvements in the printing of cottons and the chemical processes involved in that work were made by him, and gave to the goods produced in Lowell a high reputation in the United States. His researches on the action of cow-manure as a mordant, showing that its fixing properties are due to the sodium phosphate that it contains, with the subsequent introduction of " substitutes," was a decided advance in the art of calico-printing. Dr. Dana prepared for the City of Lowell a valuable report on the injurious influence of lead pipes for water used for drinking and culinary purposes. His interest in this subject led him subsequently to translate from the French a "Treatise on Lead Diseases." He contributed many papers on technical topics to the "North American Review" and Silliman's "American Journal of Science," and, in conjunction with his brother, James Freeman Dana, he published "Outlines of Mineralogy and Geology of Boston and its Vicinity" (Boston, 1818). His other works include " Chemical Changes occurring in the Manufacture of Sulphuric Acid" (1833), and his investigations in chemistry applied to agriculture led to the publication of "Muck Manual for Manures" (Lowell, 1842), for which he received a prize from the Massachusetts society for promoting agriculture, and also an "Essay on Manures" (New York, 1843). Professor Benjamin Silliman, Jr., wrote of him : "In point of time, originality, and ability, Dr. Dana stood deservedly first among scientific writers on agriculture in the United States."--Napoleon Jackson Tecumseh, nephew of Samuel Luther and James Freeman, soldier, born in Fort Sullivan, Eastport, Maine, 15 April 1822. He was graduated at the U. S. military academy in 1842, and, after being appointed in the 7th infantry as second lieutenant, served on garrison duty in the southwest. During the Mexican war he served with distinction, and was present at many of the important engagements, being severely wounded in storming the entrenchments at the battle of Cerro Gordo. He became captain on the staff and assistant quartermaster in March 1848, and until 1855 served in garrison duty, principally in Minnesota. From 1855 till 1861 he was a banker in St. Paul, Minnesota, and was brigadier-general of the militia from 1857 till 1861. During the civil war he accompanied the 1st Minnesota infantry as colonel to the front, becoming brigadier-general of volunteers in February 1862, and attached to the Army of the Potomac. He served in the battles before Richmond, and at Antietam commanded a brigade in General John Sedgwick's division of General Edwin V. Sumner's corps, and was severely wounded. He was commissioned major general of volunteers in November 1862, and was in command of the defenses of Philadelphia during the invasion of Pennsylvania by the Confederate Army in 1863. Afterward he joined the Army of the Gulf, and commanded the expedition by sea to the Rio Grande, landing at Brazes Santiago, and driving the Confederate forces as far as Laredo, Texas. He then successively commanded the 13th army corps, the district of Vicksburg, the 16th army corps, the districts of west Tennessee and Vicksburg, and finally the Department of the Mississippi. In May 1865, he resigned from the army and engaged in mining operations in the western states. From 1866 till 1871 he was General agent of the American-Russian commercial company of San Francisco, in Alaska and Washington, after which he became superintendent of railroads in Illinois, and in 1878 of the Chicago, Burlington, and Quincy railroad.

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