Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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PRENTISS, Samuel, physician, born in Stoning-ton, Connecticut, in 1759; died in Northfield, Massachusetts, in 1818. He was the son of Colonel Samuel Prentiss, who served in the Revolutionary war. After receiving a good education, he studied medicine, and entered the Revolutionary army as assistant surgeon. After the war he went to Worcester, Massachusetts, and afterward to Northfield, where he gained a large practice, and for many years was the principal operator in the vicinity. He was made a fellow of the Massachusetts medical society in 1810. --His son, Samuel, jurist, born in Stonington, Connecticut, 31 March, 1782; died in Montpelier, Vermont, 15 January, 1857, studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1802, and began to practise in Montpelier in 1803, soon acquiring a reputation for eloquence and integrity. He served in the legislature in 1824-'5, and in 1829 was elected chief justice of the supreme court of Vermont. He was then chosen to the United States senate as a Whig, serving from 5 December, 1831, till 11 April, 1842, when he resigned. During his term he effected the passage of a bill against duelling in the District of Columbia. In 1842 he was appointed judge of the United States district court of Vermont, which office he held until his death.--Another son, John Holmes, journalist, born in Worcester, Massachusetts, 17 April, 1784: died in Cooperstown, New York, 26 June, 1861, learned the printer's trade, and, settling in Cooperstown, New York, established there, in 1808, "The Freeman's Journal," which he conducted until 1849. He was elected a representative to congress as a Democrat. serving from 4 September, 1837, till 3 March, 1841.--The second Samuel's son, Theodore, lawyer, born in Montpelier, Vermont, 10 September, 1815, entered the University of Vermont in 1838, but, owing to impaired health, left in the same year, and travelled in the south. He studied law under his father, was admitted to the bar in 1844, and in 1845 removed to Watertown, Wisconsin He was a member of the convention of 1846, acting as chairman of the committee on the acts of congress for the admission of the state, and reported the article upon that subject, which, after a single amendment that he suggested, was adopted. He was also a member of the State constitutional convention of 1847-'8. Mr. Prentiss served in the Wisconsin legislature, and was three times elected mayor of Watertown.
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