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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LEWIS, William David, translator, born in Christiana, Delaware, 22 December, 1792; died near Florence, New Jersey, 1 April, 1881. He was private secretary to Henry Clay in 1814-'15, accompanying him when he was United States peace commissioner to Great Britain in the latter year. Subsequently he resided ten years in Russia, where he engaged in mercantile pursuits, and devoted much study to the language. On his return to Philadelphia, from 1849 till 1853 he was collector of the port; in 1854 was president of the Catawissa railroad, and treasurer of the Williamsport and Elmira railroad. For many years he was cashier of the Girard bank of Philadelphia. He was a trustee of various benevolent institutions, and at one time was president of the Pennsylvania academy of fine arts. He translated and published the "Bokesarian Fountain," by Alexander Pushkin, and other poems by various Russian authors (Philadelphia, 1841), which was favorably commented on by the Russian press, and was an introduction to the subsequent demand for Russian literature in America.--His son, William David, soldier, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1828; died there, 19 January, 1872, was active in the Philadelphia militia previous to the civil war, and at the first call for volunteers served three months as colonel of the 18th Pennsylvania regiment, subsequently becoming colonel of the 110th Pennsylvania volunteers. He participated in the battle of Winchester and others of that campaign, and in March, 1865, was brevetted brigadier-general of volunteers.
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