Knox, John Jay, 1828-1892

Alternative names
Birth 1828
Death 1892

Biographical notes:

U.S. Comptroller of the Currency.

From the description of First National Bank of Washington receivership letter, 1873. (Historical Society of Washington, Dc). WorldCat record id: 767726418

Financier and public official.

From the description of Letters of John Jay Knox, 1878-1880. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 71009963

John Jay Knox has an entry in the Dictionary of American Biography. He was born in Oneida County, New York. He graduated from Hamilton College. His father was a banker, and Knox followed him into this career. Later he worked in the U.S. Treasury Department and became Comptroller of the Currency. In 1884 he resigned that position and became a bank president in New York City. He died in that city in 1892.

From the description of House photographs, ca.1884-1892. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 261233034

John Jay Knox (1828-1892) was an American banker, author, and politician who served as president of the National Bank of the Republic and helped prepare the Coinage Act of 1873 that officially dropped the silver dollar from U.S. coinage.

Knox was born March 19, 1828 in Augusta (Oneida County), New York, the seventh child of John J. Knox and Sarah Ann Curtiss. He graduated from Hamilton College in 1849, before working as a bank teller at the Bank of Vernon, where his father was president. In 1862, Knox wrote an essay on the need for a national banking system that prompted Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P. Chase to appoint him to a clerkship position in the Treasury department. After holding several different positions, Knox was appointed Deputy Comptroller of the Currency in 1867 and promoted to Comptroller by President Ulysses S. Grant on April 24, 1872. While in this position, Knox played an important role in the drafting of the Coinage Act of 1873 which eliminated the silver dollar making the gold dollar the unit of measure. In May 1884, Knox resigned his post to accept a position as president of the National Bank of the Republic.

On February 7, 1871, Knox married Caroline E. Todd with whom he had three sons and three daughters. He died in New York City on February 9, 1892.

From the guide to the John Jay Knox Letters, 1870-1894, (Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries)


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