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Rives, John C.

Born: 1795-05-24 Franklin County, Virginia

Died: 1864-04-10 Bladensburg, Maryland

After his father died in 1806, Rives moved to Kentucky to live with an uncle, but he later settled in Illinois. He studied and then practiced law in Shawneetown, Illinois. In 1824, he moved to Washington, DC, and became a clerk at the United States Telegraph. That paper's editor, Duff Green, connected him to prominent Democrats in Washington, and he obtained a clerkship in the Treasury Department under Amos Kendall, a close political advisor of President Andrew Jackson. In 1832, he went to work with Francis Preston Blair, publisher of The Globe. In December 1833, Rives and Blair launched the Congressional Globe. In 1845, the partners sold The Globe and in 1849, they parted ways over political differences. Rives objected to Blair's foray into Free-Soil politics, and Blair's anti-slavery views made it difficult for the Congressional Globe to gain the bi-partisan support it needed. Rives was a strong Unionist and, donated more than $30,000 to the wives of Washington, DC, men serving in the Union Army.

Olive Hoogenboom, "Rives, John Cook," American National Biography, ed. by John A. Garraty and Mark C. Carnes (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999), 18:571-72.