GRINNELL, Joseph (1788-1885)

GRINNELL, JOSEPH, (brother of Moses Hicks Grinnell), a Representative from Massachusetts; born in New Bedford, Mass., November 17, 1788; completed preparatory studies; moved to New York City in 1809; engaged in mercantile pursuits; traveled in Europe, and returned to New Bedford; president of the First National Bank of New Bedford in 1832; president of the New Bedford & Taunton Railroad in 1839; member of the Governor's council 1839-1841; in 1840 he became a director of the Boston & Providence Railroad, the following year its president, resigning that position in 1846, but remaining a director until 1863; president of the Wamsutta Cotton Mills in 1847; elected as a Whig to the Twenty-eighth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Barker Burnell; reelected to the Twenty-ninth, Thirtieth, and Thirty-first Congresses and served from December 7, 1843, to March 3, 1851; declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1850; resumed his former business activities; died in New Bedford, Mass., February 7, 1885; interment in Oak Grove Cemetery.

Massachusetts Historical Society
Boston, MA
Papers: In the A. E. Swasey Papers, 1850-1854, 1 box.
Other authors include Joseph Grinnell.


New Bedford Whaling Museum
Kendall Institute
New Bedford, MA
Papers: In the Grinnell Family Papers, 1799-1892, 141 items.
Includes business records of Fish & Grinnell, in which Joseph Grinnell was a partner. The company was reorganized by Joseph Grinnell and his brothers, Henry and Moses Hicks as Fish, Grinnell & Company. The firm originally handled oil and candles of New Bedford merchants, later branched out as ship owners, operators of packet lines to Great Britain, and merchants trading in Great Britain, and merchants trading in Latin America, Cuba, China, and England. The papers include substantial materials of founder Joseph Grinnell.

  • [Rodman, Benjamin]. Memoir of Joseph Ginnell. [Boston: D. Clapp, printer, 1863].