HON. JOHN G. BROOKS, of Belfast, son of Solomon and Nancy (Savage) Brooks, both
descendants of old Massachusetts families, was born in York, Me., February 15, 1821. His maternal ancestor, Maj.
Thomas Savage, married Faith, the daughter of Anne Hutchinson, and went with her to Rhode Island when she was banished
from the Province of Massachusetts, but soon returned to Boston. Major Savage was prominent in the doings of the
colony, commanding the Massachusetts forces in King Philip's War.
His early education was obtained in the public schools. In his thirteenth year he left school to take a place as
boy in a general store, where he remained one year. He afterwards went to the Academy at South Berwick for some
two years. His father resuming business, be entered his store as clerk and Assistant Postmaster. In 1839 he went
to Boston and remained one year as clerk in a retail dry goods store. His health failing, he was compelled to give
up this position and pass two years in efforts to regain it. His health being restored, but fearing he could not
endure the confinement incident to mercantile life, he went to Gorham to prepare to enter upon a collegiate course.
His residence in Boston and subsequent illness prevented his entrance into college at the usual age, and being
anxious to complete his studies as soon as practicable, he wrote his former teacher at South Berwick, who was then
Professor at Dartmouth College, stating his deficiency in the required preparatory course in the languages, and
that he had read more mathematics than was required. He was bidden to come, and went without any recommendation
from his teachers at Gorham. He passed such an examination as to admit him fully to the Freshman class. His rank
during his collegiate course was among the first of his class in scholarship. Like a great many of the Dartmouth
students at that time, he taught school winters to help out his limited means.
In December, 1848. he commenced the study of medicine in Bangor, and while there as a student, in the fall of 1849,
the cholera made its appearance and a temporary hospital was established. He volunteered to act as nurse and was
in the hospital during the active prevalence of the disease. He attended two courses of lectures at Jefferson Medical
College, where he graduated in March, 1851.
Immediately upon his graduation, Doctor Brooks established himself in the practice of Medicine at Belfast, where
he has since remained. For twenty years he devoted himself wholly to the duties of his profession. He was United
States Pension Examining Surgeon, and during the war acted as Examining Surgeon for drafted men and volunteers,
under appointment of the Governor of Maine. He wrote for the medical journals and held offices in both the Maine
and Waldo County Medical Societies. Under the large demands of his profession, his naturally feeble constitution
giving away, be was compelled to gradually relinquish his practice.
He was elected to the State Senate in 1872, hut declined a re-nomination. Subsequently he served two years as Mayor
of the City of Belfast. When the greenback craze spread over eastern Maine he consented to be a candidate for Representative
to the Legislature, and was elected a member of the House for 1880.
Doctor Brooks was a I)emocrat in politics in the early part of his life, but became a Republican at the commencement
of the war, when the Democratic party failed to actively support the Administration in the pros& cution of
the war for the suppression of the Rebellion. He has been prominent in the councils of his party for many years.
He has been Trustee of the Belfast Savings Bank for twenty-five years, from the time of the establishment of that
institution, and has been President of the Belfast National Bank for fourteen years, during which time the business
of that bank has increased threefold. Doctor Brooks has been largely interested in shipping, as part owner and
managing owner of a number of vessels. He has also been actively identified with the business interests of Belfast.