KNOX HON. JAMES B., son of William and Sarah Knox, was born at Knoxville, Tioga county, Pa., November 4, 1831.
After obtaining a liberal education he began the study of law in Franklin, Pa., with Hon. John C. Knox, his only
brother. He was duly admitted to the bar, came to Clarion in 1853, and commenced life actively in his chosen profession.
In 1855 he married Jennie Z. Stehley, of Harrisburg, Pa. Their union was blessed with six children, five of whom
are yet living, and reside in Clarion.
At the beginning of the Civil War Mr. Knox left his family and a lucrative law practice to bear arms for his country.
On the 14th of June, 1861, he was mustered into the service of the Union army as captain of Company E, of the Thirty
Ninth Regiment, Tenth P. R. V. C. He was promoted to major August 15, 1862, and later to commanding officer of
his regiment. On account of his health failing he resigned his position, obtained his discharge November 23, 1863,
and returned to his family and practice in Clarion. During his service in the army he participated in the following
battles: Dranesvile, Mechanicsville, Gaines's Mill, Newmarket Cross roads, Malvern Hill, Fredericksburg, Gettysburg,
Bristoe Station, and Mine Run. During the battle of Gettysburg a little incident occurred which will serve to show
how regardless he was of his own life, and how he sought to save the lives of his comrades. He wanted to see the
position of the Confederates in the Devil's Den, and for this purpose stood on a rock exposed to the enemy's fire,
but told his men to keep down, that it was dangerous. While standing there a shell struck a branch of a tree only
a few feet from his head. This he treated as a trivial affair, making motions to the rebels, and still standing
in his position, a target for their marksmen. His farewell address to his men at the close of his last dress parade
was quite a touching scene. His remarks were full of pathos and patriotism.
In 1873 he entered into a law partnership with Hon. James T. Maffett, which continued until he took his seat on
the bench, January 1, 1882, having been elected to the judgeship of the Eighteenth Judicial District in the fall
of 1881. He performed the duties of his office faithfully until his death on December 22, 1884. He died at his
post while holding court in Brookville. The disease, asthma, which carried him away, was contracted during his
military services in the army.
As a citizen, Mr. Knox was greatly respected, and regarded as strictly honest and up.. right in all his dealings.
His intentions were good, and his private character exceptionally pure and above suspicion. As a soldier he was
brave and daring almost to recklessness, and much loved by his comrades. In his profession he stood high in ability,
integrity, and gentlemanly deportment; as a judge he was popular, sympathetic, and impartial; as a husband and
father he was a model of devotion and affection.
History of Clarion County, Pennsylvania
With Illustrations and Biographical Sketches
of some of its prominent pioneers.
EDITED BY: A. J. Davis
D. Mason & Co., Publishers
Clairion County Pennsylvania Biographies
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