TRIMBLE, David (1782-1842)

TRIMBLE, DAVID, a Representative from Kentucky; born in Frederick County, Va., in June 1782; was graduated from the College of William and Mary, Williamsburg, Va., in 1799; studied law; was admitted to the bar and commenced legal practice in Mount Sterling, Ky.; served in the War of 1812 as brigade quartermaster of the First Brigade, Kentucky Mounted Militia, and later as a private in the Battalion of Kentucky Mounted Infantry Volunteers commanded by Major Dudley; elected as a Republican to the Fifteenth through the Seventeenth Congress; reelected as an Adams-Clay Republican to the Eighteenth Congress; and elected as an Adams candidate to the Nineteenth Congress (March 4, 1817-March 3, 1827); chairman, Committee on Expenditures in the Department of the Treasury (Sixteenth Congress), Committee on Elections (Sixteenth Congress); was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection to the Twentieth Congress; died at Trimble's Furnace, Greenup County, Ky., October 20, 1842.

The Filson Historical Society
Special Collections
Louisville, KY
Papers: 1818-1821, 4 items.
Letters of David Trimble regarding routine matters, primarily pensions.


Ross County Historical Society
McKell Library
Chillicothe, OH
Papers: ca. 1812-1842, 1023 items.
The papers of David Trimble date from the War of 1812 and pertain to his roles as Quartermaster for Gen. Green Clay's brigade and as aide to Gen. William Henry Harrison. David Trimble was present at both sieges of Fort Meigs, and there is correspondence relative to events during that period. As aide to Harrison, he was entrusted with the mission to carry the dispatches to Gov. Shelby in Kentucky urging him to raise a force to march with Harrison on Detroit and into Canada. Correspondence concerning those arrangements is included in the collection. With the1812 documents are several items relating to Harrison. There is a copy of the extensive report he made to the Secretary of War, John Armstrong, on the Indians. There is an unsigned copy of his letter of resignation as Major General sent to Armstrong. Harrison's letter to President Madison notifying him of his resignation is signed. There are three personal letters. Written by Harrison to Trimble after the war. A view of the War on the home front in Chillicothe is provided in letters written by Thornly White to his friend, John Trimble. Other significant manuscripts include land grants signed by Lord Fairfax, Patrick Henry and Gov. Beverly Randolph of Virginia; a letter written by John Marshall; a letter written by the widow of Stephen Decatur explaining her husband's Tripolitan Ships; Trimble and Henry Clay were partners in a land purchase, and a copy of their contract alleged to be in Clay's handwriting is in the collection. A large portion of the collection is comprised of correspondence and memoranda relating to Trimble's Congressional career. He was involved in legislation concerning the military, banking and commerce, and foreign relations. Trimble was responsible for gaining the release of Richard Meade, a Philadelphia merchant, who was confined in a Spanish prison unjustly. The letters and memos concerning his efforts to gain Meade's freedom are numerous. Of importance in the Congressional manuscripts are those pertaining to the election of 1824. Trimble was urged by his constituents to vote for Andrew Jackson, but he cast his vote for Adams, and that act cost him his seat in Congress. Many of these documents are concerned with the defense of his action which involved the accumulation of information on Jackson's military career. The part of the collection that pertains to his private and business affairs begins with limited correspondence with his father in Ross County, Ohio, and the settlement of his father's estate. There are numerous documents covering all of his business ventures.

  • Trimble, David. The address of David Trimble. Frankfort, [Ky.]: Printed by J. H. Holeman, 1828.
  • ------. [Address of David Trimble, February 27th, 1823]. [Washington, D.C.]: Davis & Force, [1823].
  • ------. Circular, Washington, May 20, 1824. [Washington, D.C.?: N.p., 1824?]
  • ------. Reply of Mr. Trimble, of Kentucky, to Mr. McDuffie, of S. Carolina, on the amendment of the Constitution: House of Representatives, April 1, 1826. [Washington?: N.p., 1826].