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1884 Biographies


Hon. Samuel R. Curtis was born in New York State while his parents were on their way west. He, however, claims to be a native of Licking county, Ohio, the place of his parents' settlement The date of his birth was February 3, 1807. He was educated at the common schools and at West Point, from the latter of which he graduated in 1831. In 1832 he commenced the study of law in Ohio, which profession he practiced until the breaking out of the Mexican war, at which time he held the position of adjutant general of Ohio. Resigning this, he became the colonel of the Third Ohio regiment, and saw considerable service under General Taylor, in the land of chaparal and "Greasers." Shortly after the close of that war he came to Iowa, locating at Keokuk.

In 1856 he was elected member of Congress from the first district, and re-elected as above mentioned. At the beginning of the war of the Rebellion, be raised the Second Regiment of Iowa Infantry, and entered the service as its colonel. Abilities such as his soon raised him to the ranks of brigadier and major general. For his gallant conduct and skillful generalship at the battle of Pea Ridge, he won immortal renown as one of the noted leaders of the Union army in the troubled times of 1861-1865.

Contributed by Lisa Varnes-Rex from "History of Cass County, Iowa. Together With Sketches of its Towns, Villages and Townships, Educational, Civil, Military and Political History: Portraits of Prominent Persons, and Biographies of Old Settlers and Representative Citizens." Springfield, Ill.: Continental Historical Company, 1884, pg. 341-342.

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