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Wallace, James

Dickinson College Alumnus - No photograph currently available
James Wallace was from a prominent Dorchester County family in Cambridge, Maryland. He graduated from Dickinson College in 1840. He returned to Cambridge and studied law, and opened a successful practice in 1842. In December 1843, he married Ann Elizabeth Phelps and the couple had five children. He entered politics and served a term in the Maryland House of Delegates between 1854 and 1856, then moved on to the state senate between 1856 and 1860. In 1856, having become involved with the American Party, he was a presidential elector for Millard Fillmore. After the outbreak of the Civil War, he helped raise the First Maryland Volunteers (Eastern Shore) in August 1861 and took command as its colonel. The unit was intended to protect Union interests on the Eastern shore but in July 1863, the First found itself at Gettysburg fighting on the third day of the battle around Culp's Hill. In the regiment's only day of pitched battle during its entire service, and with Wallace in command, it met and mauled the First Maryland Regiment of the Confederate States Army that contained many of their friends and neighbors from coastal Maryland. The regiment, and its colonel, mustered out two days before Christmas in 1863. Wallace returned to Cambridge to resume his practice and also opened several large business concerns, including a large oyster steam packing plant on the docks and a fruit cannery with his son James. James Wallace died in 1887 while visiting his married daughter in Baltimore. He was sixty-eight years old. (By John Osborne)
Life span: 
03/14/1818 to 02/12/1887
Dickinson Connection: 
Class of 1840


How to Cite This Page: "Wallace, James," House Divided: The Civil War Research Engine at Dickinson College,