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RICE, Alexander Hamilton, Sr. [1818-1895] -- American politician

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RICE, Alexander Hamilton, governor of Massachusetts, was born in Newton Lower Falls, Mass., Aug. 30, 1818; son of Thomas and Lydia (Smith) Rice. His father was a paper manufacturer at Newton Lower Falls. He attended the public schools of Newton; was graduated from Union college, Schenectady, N.Y., A.B., 1844, A.M., 1847, and began business in Boston, Mass., with Wilkins, Carter and Company, as a paper dealer and manufacturer, which business developed into the Rice, Kendall Company.

He was a member of the Boston school committee; a member of the board of public institutions, and a member and president of the common council of Boston. He was the first Republican mayor of the city of Boston, 1856-57, and during his administration the territory known as the Back Bay district was developed, the City Hospital was started and the Public Library building was finished and dedicated. He was president of the Boston board of trade for several years, and was a Republican representative in the 36th-39th congresses, 1859-67, serving as chairman of the committee on naval affairs, 1863-65. He was a delegate to the Philadelphia Loyalists' convention of 1866, and to the Republican national convention of 1868. He was governor of the commonwealth of Massachusetts, 1876-78, inclusive.

He was twice married; first, in 1844, to Augusta E., sister of Judge McKim of the Suffolk county probate court, and secondly, to Angie Erickson Powell of Rochester. N.Y. He was a member of the American Archaeological society; a fellow of the American Geographical society of New York; a member of the American Historical association; a trustee of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, of the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, of the Episcopal Theological school, Cambridge, and honorary chancellor of Union university, 1881. The honorary degree of LL.D. was conferred on him by Harvard in 1876.

He died in Melrose, Mass., July 22, 1895.

His grandson, Alexander Hamilton Rice, Jr., was a well-known geographer and explorer.  -30-
 

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