Biography of Neal Dow
Famous American Biographies

NEAL DOW, one of the most prominent temperance reformers our country has known, was born in Portland, Me., March 20, 1804. He received his education in the Friends Seminary, at New Bedford, Massachusetts, his parents being members of that sect. After leaving school he pursued a mecrantile and manufacturing career for a number of years. He was active in the affairs of his native city, and in 1839 became chief of the fire department, and in 1851 was elected mayor. He was re-elected to the latter office in 1854. Being opposed to the liquor traffic he was a champion of the project of prohibition, first brought forward in 1839 by James Appleton. While serving his first term as mayor he drafted a bill for the "suppression of drinking houses and tippling shops," which he took to the legislature and which was passed without an alteration. In 1858 Mr. Dow was elected to the legislature. On the outbreak of the Civil war he was appointed colonel of the Thirteenth Maine Infantry and accompanied General Butler's expedition to New Orleans. In 1862 he was made brigadier general, At the battle of Port Hudson May 27, 1863, he was twice wounded, and taken prisoner. He was confined at Libby prison and Mobile nearly a year, when, being exchanged, he resigned, his health having given way under the rigors of his captivity. He made several trips to England in the interests of temperance organization, where he addressed large audiences. He was the candidate of the National Prohibition party for the presidency in 1880, receiving about ten thousand votes. In 1884 he was largely instrumental in the amendment of the constitution of Maine, adopted by an overwhelming popular vote, which forever forbade the manufacture or sale of any intoxicating beverages, and commanding the legislature to enforce the prohibition. He died October 2, 1897.

Also see Neal Dow in the Maine Biographies

A Biographical Record
Of Schuyler County, New York
The S. J. Clarke Publishing Company
New York and Chicago 1903.


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