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James Alpheus Dickinson
First Class Cabin Boy, United States Navy
Government Official
Ohio State Flag
James Alpheus Dickinson, born May 22, 1849, Sandusky County, Ohio was the youngest son of Rudolphus and Marguerite (Beaugrand) Dickinson. The Dickinson and Beaugrand families were among the earliest pioneers to settle in the Sandusky region.

Rudolphus Dickinson became prosecuting attorney of the county and was a member of Ohio's Board of Public Works. In 1846, Dickinson was elected to Congress and re-elected in 1848. In March of 1849, two months prior to the birth of James, Dickinson died in Washington, D.C.

At the age of thirteen, James ran away from home, enlisting as a first class cabin boy in the U.S. Navy in May of 1863. The greater portion of his one-year enlistment was spent aboard the gunboat Tawah on the Mississippi River.

Following his service, Dickinson attended Notre Dame (1866-1869). He eventually returned to Fremont to practice law. Family data states he also practiced medicine in North Carolina. Around 1880, Dickinson moved to Washington, D.C. and entered government service in the Treasury Department and later, in the Department of Labor and Commerce. In 1886, Dickinson married Hattie Platt in Washington, D.C. Dickinson was the father of two daughters: Mrs. Areme Bennett and Mrs. Marguerite Bruckner.

Dickinson died in Washington, D.C. November 12, 1922. He was buried at Arlington National Cemetery.


Hon. Rudolphus Dickinson
(b. 1797 - d. 20 Mar 1849) 
Public Vault (Removed 1848) 

A Representative from Ohio. Graduated Williams College, Mass. Studied law and practiced. Elected as a Democrat to the 30th and 31st Congresses and served from 1847 until his death. Cenotaph at Range 55 Site 157.


The National Intelligencer, Wednesday, March 21, 1849
Death of a Member of Congress

We regret to learn that the Hon. Rudolphus Dickinson, a Representative in the late Congress, and a Representative elect to the next Congress, from the State of Ohio, died in this city at four o'clock yesterday morning. His disease, as we understand, was congestion of the brain; and he had been confined to his bed for
about five weeks. It is gratifying to know that some members of his family were with him in his last illness.

The funeral service will be performed in the Hall of the House of Representatives at half past twelve o'clock this day, and immediately thereafter the procession will move to the Congressional Burial ground.


Funeral of Hon. Rudolphus Dickinson

The Funeral Services over the remains of the Hon. Rudolphus Dickinson, a Member of the last Congress from the State of Ohio, were performed in the House of Representatives at noon yesterday in the presence of the President of the United States (Taylor) and several Heads of Departments, the Senate of the United States, members of the late House of Representatives who are still in the city of  Washington, and a large number of residents and strangers. The Chaplain of the late House of Representatives, the Rev. R.R. Gurley, officiated. At the close of the services the Funeral cortege proceeded to the Congressional Burial Ground, and the remains of the deceased were deposited in a tomb until the wishes of his friends as to the place of final interment can be ascertained.

Reintered at Oakwood Cemetery, Sandusky, Ohio.


JA Dickinson PHOTO
Courtesy of the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center

Posted: 9 August 2002  Updated: 14 June 2003 Updated: 15 November 2003 Updated: 18 December 2005