Charles Pennebaker Grimes

Is your surname Grimes?

Research the Grimes family

Charles Pennebaker Grimes's Geni Profile

Share your family tree and photos with the people you know and love

  • Build your family tree online
  • Share photos and videos
  • Smart Matching™ technology
  • Free!

Charles Pennebaker Grimes

Birthplace: Tacoma, Pierce County, Washington, United States
Death: October 29, 1957 (53)
New York, New York County, New York, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of Charles Ysla Grimes and Sarah Rosina 'Rose' Grimes
Husband of Louise Davis “Ligi” Ireland Grimes
Father of Charles Grimes
Brother of Private; Private and Private

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
view all

Immediate Family

About Charles Pennebaker Grimes




Charles P. Grimes, former chief counsel of the United States Senate Internal Security Subcommittee, died on Wednesday night at New York Hospital after suffering a heart attack earlier in the day. His age was 53. Mr. Grimes, who lived at Locust Valley, L.I., was a partner in the law firm of Cole, Grimes, Friedman & Deits, 30 Broad St. Last year he been counsel to Wes Santee, the American track star, in Mr. Santee's fight to retain amateur status against a National Amateur Athletic Union ruling.

Appointed to the Internal Security Subcommittee post in January, 1954, Mr. Grimes served until mid-June of that year, under the chairmanship of Senator William E. Jenner, Republican of Indiana.

Mr. Grimes' subsequent resignation was said to have been due to a disagreement with committee members on investigative policies. He had failed in his request for a larger staff and some of his plans had not been accepted. A graduate of Taft School, Yale College (1927); and Yale Law School (1930), Mr. Grimes started his career with the law firm of Cravath, de Gresdorff, Swaine & Wood. In 1935, he became senior counsel of the National Recovery Administration. Later that year he was named a deputy assistant District Attorney on the staff of Thomas E. Dewey when Mr. Dewey was the special rackets prosecutor here.

Aided in Hines Case.

On Mr. Dewey's staff, Mr. Grimes played a prominent part in the successful prosecution of the late James J. Hines, the Tammany leader, who was charged with participation in the operations of a policy gang. Mr. Grimes also had a part in the investigation and prosecution of several others who were prominent on the Dewey list. Among them was a notorious policy banker whom he succeeded in having extradited from Mexico, and a well known gangster and his companions whose apprehension in Philadelphia hide-out he achieved through the leadership of a daring police raid.

At his death Mr. Grimes had been engaged in writing a book on several aspects of American foreign policy as seen through the eyes of a former internal security official.. In his home neighborhood he had found time to be chairman of the Zoning Appeals Board of Lattingtown, L.I., and president of the Nonpartisans Civic Association of Nassau County. He belonged to the Racquet and Tennis, Union League, Piping Rock, Creek, Yale and Church Clubs. He leaves his wife, Mrs. Louise Ireland Grimes, a son, Charles L. Grimes, and two daughters, the Misses Arline and Lucy Lee Grimes.

NEW YORKER MAGAZINE MARCH 25, 1939; pg.14-15:

Asst. D.A.

We have just conducted an investigation of Charles P. Grimes, Dewey's assistant in charge of the Hines investigation. We find that he generally prepares for anything important by staying up all night. He stayed up all night before his marriage, in 1933. Last year he stayed up all night before leading the raid in Philadelphia in which Dixie Davis, Hope Dare, and George Weinberg were captured. Accompanied by a sergeant and two detectives, Grimes drove from New York late at night (he had stayed up at a party the night before this) and was stopped on the outskirts of Philadelphia for going eighty M.P.H. He and his men flashed their badges and were permitted to proceed after some scathing remarks. As they were circling the apartment house where their quarry lay, another Philadelphia cop came along and stood right in front of the house under a street lamp. He suspected something interesting was up and didn't want to miss it. A Grimes detective finally drove him off by whipping out a gun and threatening to shoot him. The raiders got into the building when Grimes rang the house telephone of a doctor tenant and told his wife there's been a bad accident. She clicked the electric lock on the front door and the raiding party burst into the Weinberg-Davis suite. Dixie was speechless with fright. He thought someone had sent some of the boys down to knock them off.

The Asst. D.A. is tall, wide, handsome, and reticent, and is called Charlie by most people. He comes of a long line of Virginians but was born, thirty-four years ago, in Tacoma, Washington, where his father was Episcopal Archdeacon of the Diocese of Olympia. At nine he made up his mind to be a lawyer, being moved to this decision by the fact that around that time a crooked lawyer stole a valuable water-power site from his father. Charlie wanted to become a lawyer not to steal power sites but to keep them from being stolen. Most of his father's money was lost in the power site episode, and Grimes went through the Taft School and Yale on scholarships. He was impatient with the New Haven curriculum and took the regular four year course and a half year of law in three years. The college dean, thinking this was a reflection on Yale, tried to discourage him by stipulating that he maintain an honors' average. Grimes did this and on the side won letters in wrestling and crew, read all of Proust, and tutored small, wealthy children in the summer. He graduated with the class of 1927 and still feels a greater spiritual kinship with '28.

After law school, Grimes worked for Cravath, De Gersdorff, Etc., and later was in Washington as counsel for NRA and PWA. He joined Dewey's in 1935. One of his jobs was the extradition of Alexander Pompez, the Harlem numbers banker, from Mexico. A Mexican army officer whom Grimes met at a party in Mexico City offered to have Pompez bumped off and delivered for 200 pesos, or $50. Grimes said he wanted him alive. The Mexican officer couldn't get this point of view, Grimes was further astonished in Mexico by the politeness of a secret agent with whom he and the Chief of Police of Mexico City drove around a good deal. The agent, a stout, elderly fellow, always insisted on sitting up front with the chauffeur, leaving Grimes in the more comfortable seat with the Chief of Police. Grimes remonstrated at this excessive consideration on the part of an older man. The agent explained that he knew of six criminals who had taken an oath to kill the Chief of Police, and he felt happier in front. Grimes is a member of the Yale, Union League, and Seawanhaka - Corinthian Yacht Clubs, and of the Boilermakers, Iron Ship Builders & Helpers Union of America, Mt. Tahoma Lodge, No. 348. He joined the union while working summers during the war. He likes to sing old sea chanteys he learned during this period, and accompany them by dancing a hornpipe. He did this at the last annual New Year's Eve ball at Tuxedo, raising himself considerably in the estimation of a good many people who had hitherto looked on him simply as an assistant district attorney.

view all

Charles Pennebaker Grimes's Timeline

May 31, 1904
Tacoma, Pierce County, Washington, United States
July 9, 1935
New York, New York County, New York, United States
October 29, 1957
Age 53
New York, New York County, New York, United States