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Felix Grundy

Felix Grundy

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Felix Grundy was a U.S. Congressman
United States House of Representatives
The United States House of Representatives is one of the two Houses of the United States Congress, the bicameral legislature which also includes the Senate.The composition and powers of the House are established in Article One of the Constitution...

 and U.S. Senator
United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

 from Tennessee
Tennessee
Tennessee is a U.S. state located in the Southeastern United States. It has a population of 6,346,105, making it the nation's 17th-largest state by population, and covers , making it the 36th-largest by total land area...

 who also served as the 13th Attorney General of the United States.

Biography


Born in Berkeley County, Virginia (now Berkeley County, West Virginia
Berkeley County, West Virginia
Berkeley County is a county located in the Eastern Panhandle region of the U.S. state of West Virginia. As of 2010, the population is 104,169, making it the second-most populous county in West Virginia, behind Kanawha...

), he moved to Brownsville, Pennsylvania
Brownsville, Pennsylvania
Brownsville is a borough in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, United States, officially founded in 1785 located 35 miles south of Pittsburgh along the Monongahela River...

, and then Kentucky
Kentucky
The Commonwealth of Kentucky is a state located in the East Central United States of America. As classified by the United States Census Bureau, Kentucky is a Southern state, more specifically in the East South Central region. Kentucky is one of four U.S. states constituted as a commonwealth...

 with his parents. He was educated at home and at the Bardstown Academy in Bardstown, Kentucky
Bardstown, Kentucky
As of the census of 2010, there were 11,700 people, 4,712 households, and 2,949 families residing in the city. The population density was . There were 5,113 housing units at an average density of...

. He then studied law
Law
Law is a system of rules and guidelines which are enforced through social institutions to govern behavior, wherever possible. It shapes politics, economics and society in numerous ways and serves as a social mediator of relations between people. Contract law regulates everything from buying a bus...

 and was admitted to the Kentucky bar
Bar (law)
Bar in a legal context has three possible meanings: the division of a courtroom between its working and public areas; the process of qualifying to practice law; and the legal profession.-Courtroom division:...

 and commenced practice in Springfield, Kentucky
Springfield, Kentucky
Springfield is a city in and county seat of Washington County, Kentucky, United States. The population was 2,634 at the 2000 census. It was established in 1793 and probably named for springs in the area.-Geography:...

 in 1799.

In 1799, Grundy was chosen to represent Washington County
Washington County, Kentucky
Washington County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of 2000, the population was 10,916. Its county seat is Springfield. The county is named for George Washington. Washington County was the first county formed in the Commonwealth of Kentucky when it reached statehood...

 at the convention which drafted the second Kentucky Constitution
Kentucky Constitution
The Constitution of the Commonwealth of Kentucky is the document that governs the Commonwealth of Kentucky. It was first adopted in 1792 and has since been rewritten three times and amended many more...

. From 1800 to 1802, he represented Washington County in the Kentucky House of Representatives
Kentucky House of Representatives
The Kentucky House of Representatives is the lower house of the Kentucky General Assembly. It is composed of 100 Representatives elected from single-member districts throughout the Commonwealth. Not more than two counties can be joined to form a House district, except when necessary to preserve...

. He then moved to Nelson County
Nelson County, Kentucky
Nelson County is a county located in the U.S. state of Kentucky. As of 2010, the population was 43,437. Its county seat is Bardstown. The county is part of the Louisville/Jefferson County, KY–IN Metropolitan Statistical Area.- History :...

, which he represented in the Kentucky House from 1804 to 1806. On December 10, 1806, he was commissioned an associate justice on the Kentucky Court of Appeals
Kentucky Court of Appeals
The Kentucky Court of Appeals is the lower of Kentucky's two appellate courts, under the Kentucky Supreme Court. Prior to a 1975 amendment to the Kentucky Constitution the Kentucky Court of Appeals was the only appellate court in Kentucky....

. He was elevated to Chief Justice of the court on April 11, 1807. Later that year, he resigned and moved to Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville is the capital of the U.S. state of Tennessee and the county seat of Davidson County. It is located on the Cumberland River in Davidson County, in the north-central part of the state. The city is a center for the health care, publishing, banking and transportation industries, and is home...

, where he again took up the practice of law.

He was elected as a Republican to the 12th and 13th Congresses and served from March 4, 1811, until his resignation in 1814.

He then became a member of the Tennessee House of Representatives
Tennessee House of Representatives
The Tennessee House of Representatives is the lower house of the Tennessee General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. state of Tennessee.-Constitutional requirements:...

 from 1819 to 1825, and in 1820 was commissioner to settle the boundary line (state line
Border
Borders define geographic boundaries of political entities or legal jurisdictions, such as governments, sovereign states, federated states and other subnational entities. Some borders—such as a state's internal administrative borders, or inter-state borders within the Schengen Area—are open and...

) between Tennessee
Tennessee
Tennessee is a U.S. state located in the Southeastern United States. It has a population of 6,346,105, making it the nation's 17th-largest state by population, and covers , making it the 36th-largest by total land area...

 and Kentucky. He was elected as a Jacksonian
Democratic-Republican Party (United States)
The Democratic-Republican Party or Republican Party was an American political party founded in the early 1790s by Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Political scientists use the former name, while historians prefer the latter one; contemporaries generally called the party the "Republicans", along...

 in 1829 to the United States Senate
United States Senate
The United States Senate is the upper house of the bicameral legislature of the United States, and together with the United States House of Representatives comprises the United States Congress. The composition and powers of the Senate are established in Article One of the U.S. Constitution. Each...

 to fill the vacancy in the term ending March 4, 1833, caused by the resignation of John H. Eaton to join the Cabinet of President
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson
Andrew Jackson was the seventh President of the United States . Based in frontier Tennessee, Jackson was a politician and army general who defeated the Creek Indians at the Battle of Horseshoe Bend , and the British at the Battle of New Orleans...

; reelected in 1832 and served from October 19, 1829, to July 4, 1838, when he resigned to accept a Cabinet position. During this time he served as chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Post Offices and Post Roads (21st through 24th Congresses), U.S. Senate Committee on the Judiciary (24th and 25th Congresses).

He entered the Cabinet when he was appointed Attorney General of the United States by President Martin Van Buren
Martin Van Buren
Martin Van Buren was the eighth President of the United States . Before his presidency, he was the eighth Vice President and the tenth Secretary of State, under Andrew Jackson ....

 in July 1838. He resigned the post in December 1839, having been elected as a Democrat
Democratic Party (United States)
The Democratic Party is one of two major contemporary political parties in the United States, along with the Republican Party. The party's socially liberal and progressive platform is largely considered center-left in the U.S. political spectrum. The party has the lengthiest record of continuous...

 to the United States Senate on November 19, 1839, to fill the vacancy in the term commencing March 4, 1839, caused by the resignation of Ephraim Foster; the question of his eligibility to election as Senator while holding the office of Attorney General of the United States having been raised, he resigned from the Senate on December 14, 1839, and was reelected the same day, serving from December 14, 1839, until his death in Nashville
Nashville, Tennessee
Nashville is the capital of the U.S. state of Tennessee and the county seat of Davidson County. It is located on the Cumberland River in Davidson County, in the north-central part of the state. The city is a center for the health care, publishing, banking and transportation industries, and is home...

, almost a year to the day later. During this stint in the upper house of the U.S. Congress
United States Congress
The United States Congress is the bicameral legislature of the federal government of the United States, consisting of the Senate and the House of Representatives. The Congress meets in the United States Capitol in Washington, D.C....

 he served as chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Revolutionary Claims in the 26th Congress.

He is interred in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Nashville, Tennessee. There are four Grundy Counties, including the one in Tennessee, named in his honor.

Grundy was a mentor to future President
President of the United States
The President of the United States of America is the head of state and head of government of the United States. The president leads the executive branch of the federal government and is the commander-in-chief of the United States Armed Forces....

 James K. Polk
James K. Polk
James Knox Polk was the 11th President of the United States . Polk was born in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. He later lived in and represented Tennessee. A Democrat, Polk served as the 17th Speaker of the House of Representatives and the 12th Governor of Tennessee...

. Polk purchased Grundy's home called "Grundy Place" and changed the name to "Polk Place". He lived and died there after his presidency. It was demolished in 1901.

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