Benjamin H. Steele collection of speeches, 1863 - 1872Manuscript MS-1276

Biography

Benjamin Hinman Steele was born on February 6, 1837, in Stanstead, Canada. He graduated from Dartmouth College in 1857, after which he studied law graduating with a law degree from Harvard Law School in 1858. He was admitted to the bar of Massachusetts but had to withdraw for health reasons. He returned to Canada and studied French law and was admitted to practice law in Canada and Orleans County in Vermont. He opened a practice at Derby Line, Vermont in 1858. During the Civil War he served as colonel on the staff of Governor Erastus Fairbanks from 1861 to 1863. Steele was appointed judge of the Vermont Supreme Court in November 1865, at the age of twenty-eight, a position he held until 1870. In 1870, he was appointed a member of the State Board of Education and in 1872, he was a delegate to the National Republican Convention at Philadelphia. Steele also ran for Congress but was defeated. He died on July 13, 1873 at the age of thirty-six.

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