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DELLET, James

1788–1848

Biography

DELLET, James, a Representative from Alabama; born in Camden, N.J., February 18, 1788; moved to Columbia, S.C., with his parents in 1800; was graduated from the University of South Carolina at Columbia in 1810; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1813 and practiced; moved to Alabama in 1818 and settled in Claiborne and continued the practice of law; elected to the first State house of representatives of Alabama under the State government in 1819 and served as its speaker; reelected in 1821 and 1825; unsuccessful as the Whig candidate for Congress in 1833; elected as a Whig to the Twenty-sixth Congress (March 4, 1839-March 3, 1841); elected to the Twenty-eighth Congress (March 4, 1843-March 3, 1845); resumed the practice of law and also engaged in agricultural pursuits; died in Claiborne, Monroe County, Ala., December 21, 1848; interment in a private cemetery at Claiborne, Ala.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

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External Research Collections

Alabama Department of Archives and History

Montgomery, AL
Papers: In the James Dellet Family Papers, 1775-1907, 10 cubic feet. The collection includes correspondence, financial records, notes, printed materials, speeches, photographs, and a diploma. James Dellet's correspondence reflect his work as an Alabama lawyer, businessman, plantation owner, and politician. Topics discussed in the letters include debt payment, incidents concerning his slaves, family illnesses, his daughter, the cotton market, and the state of his plantation. Especially notable are the letters dealing with slavery for their documentation of the slave trade, the Alabama laws passed to protect it, and the problems that arose because of the institution. James Dellet's political correspondence covers issues relevant to the time period, such as the state banks, congressional issues, the presidential elections, postal routes through Alabama and Mississippi, Cherokee lands, the Whig Party, the Clay Club, tariffs, the nullification issue, and Alabama state laws. Series descriptions and a container list are available in the repository.
Papers: In the Alabama Governor's Reward Files, 1830, 1 folder. This series consists of two letters concerning rewards offered by the Governor for the apprehension of criminals. Included is a letter from A. B. Cooper of Claiborne, Alabama to James Dellet describing the escape of a male slave named "Harry" from the jail where he was being held for the murder of "Foster." It was believed that the escape was aided by Harry's master, "Garner." The letter contains a description of Harry and asks for assistance in apprehending the escapee. James Dellet forwarded the letter to Governor Gabriel Moore for his attention. A container list is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Peter A. Brannon Papers, 1938, 1 item. Consists of a photographic scrapbook titled "South Around to Cross Ellicott's Line." Subjects covered include James Dellet. An index to the scrapbook is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Benjamin F. Porter Papers, 1834-1838, 1 folder. These five letters were written by Benjamin Porter to his friend, James Dellet of Claiborne, Alabama. Benjamin Porter discusses legal matters in the letters, such as the settling of the Kidd family estate, Alabama politics concerning the banking crisis, and a copy of the Alabama Supreme Court's opinions in the School Commission vs. Akins case.
Papers: In the Daniel Pratt Papers, 1835, 1 item. A letter from Daniel Pratt to General Enoch Parsons written on June 19, 1835, regarding the selling of a cotton gin to James Dellet.
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