JAMES BENTON GRANT, Colorado’s third governor was born in Russell County, Alabama, on January 2, 1848. His education was interrupted by the start of the Civil War. He joined the Confederate Army and served during the last year of the war. After his military duty, Grant continued his education, attending Iowa Agricultural College, Cornell College in New York, and the Freiberg School of Mines in Germany, where he studied metallurgy. Returning to the states, he migrated to Leadville, Colorado, and put his mining training to use. In 1882 Grant and his uncle became partners in the Omaha and Grant Smelting Company. Grant also served as vice president of the Denver National Bank. He entered politics when he was elected Governor of Colorado in 1882. During his term, he developed and expanded Colorado’s mining industry and he advocated legislation that authorized the construction of the Colorado state capitol building in Denver. His administration also improved Colorado’s trade and commerce industries. Grant did not seek reelection. He returned to his business interests in smelting and served as president of the Denver Board of Education from 1892 to 1897. He also served as a trustee to the University of Denver from 1884 to 1904. He organized the Colorado Scientific Society and stayed on as vice president of the Denver National Bank. Governor Grant, who suffered from heart disease, died on November 1, 1911, and is buried at the Fairmont Cemetery, Denver, Colorado.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 1, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.