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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PHELPS, Royal, merchant, born in Sempronius, New York, 30 March, 1809; died in New York city, 30 June, 1884. He received a common-school education, and early in life went to St. Croix, Wisconsin, where he entered the office of a merchant. He began business on his own account in 1840, established houses in Puerto Cabello and Laguayra, and in 1847 settled in New York city as one of the firm of Maitland, Phelps and Co., where he acquired a large fortune. Although a life-long Democrat, he was active in support of the National cause at the beginning of the civil war. He was a member of the New York legislature in 1862-'3, vice-president of the chamber of commerce from 1855 till his resignation in 1859, and president of the New York society for the protection of game in 1867-'77. He contributed largely by his influence and money to the erection of the statue of Washington that stands in front of the sub-treasury building in Wall street. His only daughter became the wife of John Lee Carroll, of Maryland.
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