James B. Howell, U.S. Senator

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James Bruen Howell

Birthplace: Morristown, Morris, NJ, USA
Death: Died in Keokuk, Lee, IA, USA
Immediate Family:

Son of Elias Howell and Harriet Howell

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Immediate Family

About James B. Howell, U.S. Senator


James Bruen Howell (July 4, 1816 – June 17, 1880) was a United States Senator from Iowa for slightly over one year.

Born near Morristown, New Jersey, he moved with his parents to Newark, Ohio, in 1819, and attended the public schools. He graduated from Miami University (in Oxford, Ohio) in 1839, studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1839, commencing practice in Newark. He moved to Keosauqua, Iowa in 1841, where he practiced law. He also owned a newspaper in Keosauqua and, in 1849, moved the newspaper to Keokuk, Iowa. He was postmaster of Keokuk from 1861 to 1866 and was a frequent, unsuccessful Republican candidate for state and national office.

In 1870, the Iowa General Assembly elected Howell to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of James W. Grimes. He served out the end of Grimes' term from January 18, 1870, to March 4, 1871, but was not a candidate for reelection to the Senate. He was one of three commissioners of the court of Southern claims appointed by President Ulysses Grant in 1871 to adjust claims for stores and supplies and served until 1880. He died that year in Keokuk, and his interment was in Oakland Cemetery.

James Howell's father, Elias Howell, was an Ohio U.S. Representative.

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James B. Howell, U.S. Senator's Timeline

July 4, 1816
Morristown, Morris, NJ, USA
June 17, 1880
Age 63
Keokuk, Lee, IA, USA