Banks, Nathaniel Prentiss, 1816-1894

Alternative names
Dates:
Birth 1816-01-30
Death 1894-09-01

Biographical notes:

Born in Waltham, Mass., Nathaniel Prentiss Banks worked as a child laborer in a cotton mill and as a mechanic before studying law. He served in the Massachusetts State House of Representatives and was elected to the U.S. Congress as a Democrat in 1853. Reelected as a Republican in 1856, Banks resigned his seat in 1857 and served as governor of Massachusetts from 1858-1861. In the Civil War he was given command in the Department of the Shenandoah, where he was defeated by Stonewall Jackson at Front Royal and Winchester and then at Cedar Mt. during the second battle of Bull Run. In late 1862, Banks replaced Benjamin F. Butler at New Orleans and cooperated with Grant in opening up the Mississippi by capturing Port Hudson in July of 1863 and in participating in the Red River expedition of 1864. After the war he served several terms as a Republican representative of Massachusetts in the U.S. Congress.

From the description of Orders of General Nathaniel Banks, 1864 July. (Louisiana State University). WorldCat record id: 219644679

American politician and soldier who served as a general in the Union Army during the American Civil War (1861-1865).

From the description of Autograph, 1856. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 367575332

Nathaniel P. Banks, congressman, governor of Massachusetts, and Union soldier, was born in Waltham, Massachusetts. In spite of his informal education, he was admitted to the bar at the age of 23. Banks married Mary I. Palmer in 1847. He was elected as a state representative in 1849 and made speaker of the House. He was elected to Congress in 1853 and was governor of Massachusetts from 1858-1860. One year later he was commissioned Major General of volunteers in the Union army. Banks was involved in several major battles including those at Front Royal, Winchester, Cedar Mountain, and Port Hudson. He led some 20,000 Federal troops in the Red River campaign. Following the war, Banks was immediately elected to fill a vacancy in the U. S. House of Representatives, where he served until 1872. He briefly served in the Massachusetts Senate (1874) but soon returned to Congress where he remained until 1879, at which time he was appointed U. S. marshal for Massachusetts (1879-1888). Banks was again elected to Congress, however, he retired before the end of his term due to ill health. He died in 1894 and was survived by a son and two daughters.

From the description of Nathaniel P. Banks letterpress copybook, 1863 Aug. 1-1864 Feb. 18. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122655671

American politician and general

From the guide to the Nathaniel Prentiss Banks letters, 1854, 1856, 1865, 1865, 1873, undated, (The New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division.)

Nathaniel P. Banks was a congressman, governor of Massachusetts, and general in the Federal Army during the Civil War. Banks commanded the Department of the Gulf and participated in battles including Front Royal, Winchester, Cedar Mountain, Port Hudson, and Baton Rouge.

From the description of Nathaniel Prentiss Banks letter, 1866 June 19. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122418494

U.S. representative (1853-1857), governor of Massachusetts (1858-1860), and General serving with U.S. Army during Civil War, of Waltham, Mass.

From the description of General Nathaniel P. Banks collection, [18--]-[19--]. (Waltham Public Library). WorldCat record id: 70970223

Union officer and U.S. Representative, of Waltham, Mass.

From the description of Papers, 1850-1880. (Duke University Library). WorldCat record id: 19106172

Born in Waltham, Mass., Nathaniel Prentiss Banks worked as a child laborer in a cotton mill and as a mechanic before studying law. He served in the Massachusetts State House of Representatives and was elected to the U.S. Congress as a Democrat in 1853. Reelected as a Republican in 1856, Banks resigned his seat in 1857 and served as governor of Massachusetts from 1858-1861. In the Civil War he was given command in the Dept. of the Shenandoah, where he was defeated by Stonewall Jackson at Front Royal and Winchester and then at Cedar Mt. during the second battle of Bull Run. In late 1862, Banks replaced Benjamin F. Butler at New Orleans and cooperated with Grant in opening up the Mississippi by capturing Port Hudson in July, 1863, and in participating in the Red River expedition of 1864. After the war he served several terms as a Republican representative of Massachusetts in the U.S. Congress.

From the description of General orders no. 122, 1864 Sept. 7. (Louisiana State University). WorldCat record id: 226233096

From the description of General orders no. 105, 1864 Aug. 1. (Louisiana State University). WorldCat record id: 214325604

Nathaniel Prentiss Banks (1816-1894) was a Massachusetts politician and Union general, whose career in public life spanned the period 1849 to 1891. He served several terms in the Massachusetts General Court (1849-1853; 1874), in the U.S. House of Representatives (1853-1857; 1865-1873; 1875-1879; 1889-1891), and as Governor of Massachusetts (1858-1861). His tempestuaous career as a Union general was highlighted by his capture of Port Hudson in 1863. Banks also served as a U.S. Marshall in Massachusetts from 1879 to 1888. He had attended the common schools in his hometown of Waltham, Mass., was trained as a machinist and lawyer, and was proprietor of the _Middlesex Reporter_. He also served as an inspector in the Boston customhouse and was a candidate seven times before his election to the Massachusetts House and the national House, and was regarded as a politician of tact and integrity.

From the description of Correspondence, c. 1852-1885. (American Antiquarian Society). WorldCat record id: 191259142

Army officer, governor of Massachusetts, speaker of U.S. House of representatives.

From the description of Papers, 1840-1860 [microform] : from the collections of the Illinois State Historical Library. (Harvard University). WorldCat record id: 25980991

Massachusetts state representative (1849-1852); Congressman (1853-1857, 1865-1873, 1875-1879, 1889-1891); Governor (1858-1860); Major General of Volunteers, Union Army (1861-1865); United States Marshal for Massachusetts (1879-1888).

From the description of Papers, 1840-1896. (Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library). WorldCat record id: 608337211

U.S. representative and governor of Massachusetts; and army officer.

From the description of Nathaniel Prentiss Banks papers, 1829-1911 (bulk 1860-1880). (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 71068668

Massachusetts state legislator and U.S. representative, U.S. Army general during the Civil War, leader of Red River Expedition (1864); resident of Waltham, Mass.

From the description of Nathaniel Prentiss Banks correspondence, 1863 and undated. (Maine Historical Society Library). WorldCat record id: 285455597

Biographical Note

  • 1816, Jan. 30: Born, Waltham, Mass.
  • 1839: Admitted to the Massachusetts bar
  • 1848: Married Mary Theodosia Palmer
  • 1849 - 1852 : Member, Massachusetts house of representatives; speaker of the house, 1851-1852
  • 1853: President, Massachusetts Constitutional Convention
  • 1853 - 1857 : Representative from Massachusetts, United States Congress; speaker of the House of Representatives, 1856-1857
  • 1858 - 1860 : Governor of Massachusetts
  • 1861: Managing director, Illinois Central Railroad Appointed major general of Volunteers by President Abraham Lincoln
  • 1865 - 1873 : Representative from Massachusetts, United States Congress; chairman, Committee on Foreign Affairs
  • 1873 - 1874 : Member, Massachusetts senate
  • 1875 - 1879 : Representative from Massachusetts, United States Congress
  • 1879 - 1888 : United States Marshal, Boston District, Boston, Mass.
  • 1889 - 1891 : Representative from Massachusetts, United States Congress
  • 1894, Sept. 1: Died, Waltham, Mass.

From the guide to the Nathaniel Prentiss Banks Papers, 1829-1911, (bulk 1860-1880), (Manuscript Division Library of Congress)

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Subjects:

  • Patronage, Political
  • Red River Expedition, 1864
  • Monett's Ferry, Battle of, La., 1862
  • Generals--Correspondence
  • Reconstruction (U.S. history, 1865-1877)
  • Cedar Mountain (Culpepper County, Va.), Battle of, 1862
  • Slavery--United States
  • Cedar Mountain, Battle of, Va., 1862
  • Mormons
  • Generals--Autographs
  • Skilled labor
  • Canals, Interoceanic
  • Representatives, U.S. Congress
  • Cane River, Battle of, La., 1862
  • Slavery
  • Cotton trade
  • Politicians--Autographs
  • Statues
  • Bounties, Military
  • Strikes and lockouts
  • Freedmen
  • Mechanics (Persons)
  • Military discipline
  • Fenians

Occupations:

  • Army officers
  • African American soldiers--United States
  • Generals--Massachusetts--Waltham
  • Adjutants--United States
  • Generals--United States
  • Soldiers--United States
  • Representatives U.S. Congress--Massachusetts
  • Legislators--United States
  • Governor--Massachusetts

Places:

  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Red River (as recorded)
  • Maryland (as recorded)
  • Louisiana--New Orleans (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • Waltham (Mass.) (as recorded)
  • Mobile (Ala.) (as recorded)
  • New Orleans (La.) (as recorded)
  • Boston (Mass.) (as recorded)
  • Italy (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts--Waltham (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Louisiana (as recorded)
  • Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) (as recorded)
  • Cuba (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • New Orleans (La.) (as recorded)
  • Maryland (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Canada (as recorded)
  • Maryland (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Confederate States of America (as recorded)
  • Switzerland (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts--Waltham (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Switzerland (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • Ireland (as recorded)
  • Canada (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • Louisiana (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Alaska (as recorded)
  • New Orleans (La.) (as recorded)
  • Louisiana--New Orleans (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Washington (D.C.) (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts--Waltham (as recorded)
  • Washington (D.C.) (as recorded)
  • Italy (as recorded)
  • Virginia (as recorded)
  • Louisiana (as recorded)
  • Mexico (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Virginia (as recorded)
  • Cuba (as recorded)
  • Port Hudson (La.) (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • Central America (as recorded)
  • New Orleans (La.) (as recorded)
  • Louisiana (as recorded)
  • Spain (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts--Waltham (as recorded)
  • Alaska (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • France (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Massachusetts (as recorded)
  • Ireland (as recorded)
  • Shenandoah River Valley (Va. and W. Va.) (as recorded)
  • Central America (as recorded)
  • Spain (as recorded)