Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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HALL, Sarah, author, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 30 October, 1761; died there, 8 April, 1830. She was a daughter of the Reverend John Ewing, provost of the University of Pennsylvania, and in 1782 married John Hall, of Maryland, whose father had came to that state with Lord Baltimore. She removed with her husband to his home, but in about eight years they returned to Philadelphia, where Mr. Hall became secretary of the land office and United States marshal for the district of Pennsylvania. They lived in Lamberton, New Jersey, in 1801-'5, and then in Maryland again until 1811, when they settled permanently in Philadelphia. In spite of these changes, Mrs. Hall continued her studies with diligence. She was one of the chief contributors to the "Port-Folio," established by Joseph Dermic in 1800, and when that magazine was edited by her son she aided him. She was fond of study on religious subjects, and learned Hebrew for the purpose of research. Mrs. Hall published "Conversations on the Bible" (1818; 2d ed., 2 vols., 1821; reprinted in London). A small volume, containing selections from her miscellaneous writings and a sketch of her life, was published by her son. Harrison (Philadelphia, 1833).--Her eldest son, John Elihu, author, born in Philadelphia, 27 December, 1783; died there, 11 June, 1829, was educated at Princeton, studied law, and in 1805 began to practise in Baltimore, where he was appointed professor of rhetoric and belles lettres in the University of Maryland. He was an active Federalist, was severely wounded in the Baltimore riots of 1812 (see HANSON, ALEXANDER C.), and was one of the nine that were thrown into a heap as killed. He edited "The American Law Journal" (1808-'17), and removed to Philadelphia and edited the "PortFolio" there from 1817 till 1827, contributing to it the "Memoirs of Anacreon," which attracted much attention. In 1827 he edited "The Philadelphia Souvenir" and published original and selected "Memoirs of Eminent Persons." He also published "The Practice and Jurisdiction of the Court of Admiralty" (Baltimore, 1809); a "Life of Dr. John Shaw," prefixed to his collected poems (1810); an English edition of Emerigon's "Maritime Laws," with other matter (1811); "Tracts on Constitutional Law, containing Mr. Livingston's Answer to Mr. Jefferson" (Philadelphia, 1813); and an edition of William Wirt's "British Spy," to which he contributed several letters.--Another son, Harrison, author, born in Octorara, Cecil County, Maryland, 5 November, 1785; died in Cincinnati, Ohio, 9 March, 1866, published the "Portfolio" and wrote a work on "Distillation" (1815; 2d ed., 1818; reprinted in England), which was commended by Dr. Hare and other scientists.--Another son, James, author, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 19 August, 1793; died near Cincinnati, Ohio, 5 July, 1868, studied law, but left it in 1812 to join the Erie Hall army as a volunteer in the Washington guards He commanded a detachment from his company at Chippewa in 1814, and was present at the battle of Lundy's Lane and at the siege of Fort Erie, being commended officially for his services He was then made a lieutenant in the 2d artillery and stationed at Fort Mifflin. He went with Decatur in 1815 in his expedition to Algiers, serving on the United States brig "Enterprise," commanded by Lieutenant Lawrence Kearney. Returning in the following year, he was stationed at Newport, Rhode Island, and at Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, on duty in the ordnance department, during which time he completed his law studies and was admitted to the bar in 1818 in 1820 he removed to Shawneetown, Illinois, where he practised his profession, and edited the "Illinois Gazette," a weekly newspaper. He was appointed public prosecutor, and held this office four years, when he was made judge of the circuit court till its abolition three years later. He then became state treasurer and removed to Vandalia, where he edited the "Illinois Intelligencer" and the "Illinois Monthly Magazine." He removed to Cincinnati in 1833, became cashier of the commercial bank there in 1836, and in 1853 its president, which office he held until his death. He devoted his time to literary pursuits and edited his magazine under the title of the "Western Monthly Magazine." Besides numerous contributions to periodicals, he published "Letters from the West," originally printed in the "Portfolio," and afterward collected by his brother (London, 1829); "Legends of the West" (Philadelphia, 1832); "The Soldier's Bride, and other Tales" (1832); "The Harpe's Head, a Legend of Kentucky" (1833); "Tales of the Border" (Philadelphia, 1835); "Sketches of the West" (2 vols., 1835); "Statistics of the West" (1836; re-issued with additions as "Notes on the Western States" 1839); "Life of General William Henry Harrison" (1836); "History of the Indian Tribes," in conjunction with Thomas L. McKenney (3 vols., folio, 1838-'44); "The Wilderness and the War Path" (New York, 1845); "Life of Thomas Posey, Governor of Indiana," in Sparks' "American Biography" (1846); and "Romance of Western History" (Cincinnati, 1847). A uniform edition of his works has been published (4 vols., 1853-'6).--Another son, Thomas Mifflin, physician, born in Philadelphia, 27 February, 1798, lost at sea in 1828, in a South American ship-of-war, to which he had been appointed surgeon, contributed poetry and scientific articles to the "Portfolio."
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