Samuel P. Colt

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Samuel Pomeroy Colt, Sr.

Birthplace: Patterson, New Jersey
Death: Died in Bristol, Rhode Island
Immediate Family:

Son of Christopher Colt and Theodora Goujaud Colt
Husband of Elizabeth Mitchelson Colt
Father of Russell Griswold Colt; Samuel Pomeroy Colt and Roswell Christopher Colt
Brother of Isabella DeWolf de Wolf; LeBaron Bradford Colt, U.S. Senator; Christopher Colt; George Colt and Edward Douglas Colt

Managed by: Private User
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About Samuel P. Colt

Samuel Pomeroy Colt (January 10, 1852 – August 13, 1921) was an industrialist and politician from Rhode Island.


He was born in Paterson, New Jersey on January 10, 1852, the youngest of six children born to Christopher Colt (brother to arms maker Samuel Colt) and Theodora Goujand DeWolf Colt of Bristol, Rhode Island. His friends and family called him "Pom".


In 1875, at the age of 23, he was appointed military aide-de-camp to Rhode Island Governor Henry Lippitt and was commissioned as a colonel in the Rhode Island Militia. He would use this title for the remainder of his life.


In 1876 he graduated from Columbia Law School and was elected to represent Bristol in the Rhode Island House of Representatives. He became involved in efforts to regulate child labor and advance women's property rights. He left the legislature in 1879 to become Assistant Attorney General for Rhode Island, and in 1882 was elected Attorney General for the state.


In 1881, Colt married Elizabeth Bullock, also of Bristol. The marriage produced three sons: Samuel Pomeroy, Jr. (1881–1890), Russell Griswold (1882–1959), and Roswell Christopher (1889–1935). Samuel and Elizabeth separated in 1896, and neither remarried. Russell Griswold Colt went on to marry actress Ethel Barrymore.


In 1886, Colt founded the Industrial Trust Company, a financial organization and served as its president until 1908. Later it became known as Industrial National Bank, and Fleet Bank before being merged into Bank of America.


In 1887 he was appointed as a receiver for the bankrupt National Rubber Company, based in Bristol. He reorganized the company and reopened it in 1888 as the National India Rubber Company. In 1892, he merged it with several other companies he had acquired to form the United States Rubber Company. It became the largest producer of rubber goods in the world. In 1901, he became president of the company, serving until 1918, when he was appointed Chairman of the Board of Trustees.


In 1903, he ran for Governor of Rhode Island as a Republican, but failed to unseat the incumbent Lucius Garvin.


In 1905, believing that incumbent Republican Senator George P. Wetmore was not going to stand for reelection, Colt announced his candidacy. Wetmore eventually decided to run. The ensuing contest between Colt, Wetmore and Democrat Robert Hale Ives Goddard resulted in 81 deadlocked ballots cast by the General Assembly over the course of four months in 1907 and a vacant seat in Rhode Island's delegation to the 60th Congress. In the end, Colt stepped down, possibly due to ill-health, and Wetmore was reelected to belatedly join the 60th Congress in January 1908. LeBaron B. Colt, Samuel P. Colt's older brother, would go on to win this seat in 1913.


Colt died August 13, 1921 of complications from a stroke at the family home of Linden Place in Bristol. A farm owned by Colt was later purchased by the state of Rhode Island, and transformed into Colt State Park.

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Samuel P. Colt's Timeline

January 10, 1853
Patterson, New Jersey
January 12, 1881
Age 28
October 16, 1881
Age 28
October 1, 1882
Age 29
Bristol, Bristol, Rhode Island, United States
October 10, 1889
Age 36
Bristol, Bristol, RI, USA
August 13, 1921
Age 68
Bristol, Rhode Island