|Birth: ||Sep. 2, 1817|
|Death: ||Nov. 14, 1885|
David Scott (of John,) so-called to distinguish him from his first cousin David Scott (of James,) was the grandson of David Scott, who emigrated from Ireland in the latter part of the eighteenth century and settled not far from Cowantown in the Fourth district. His son John, the father of the subject of this sketch, was born in Ireland, but was quite young when his father came to this country.
David, the subject of this sketch, was born quite near to what was formerly known as Dysart's Tavern, now Appleton, on the 2nd of September, 1817, and died near Cowantown, on the 14th of November, 1885.
All his life was spent within about two miles of the place of his birth, and most of it on the Big Elk creek at what was known while he owned them, as "Scott's Mills." His early life was devoted to farming, but upon reaching the proper age he learned the trade of augermaking, which at that time was one of the leading industries of this county, and at which he soon became an expert workman, as well as a skilful worker in iron and steel. The editor of this book has heard him remark that when he could find no one else capable of making odd pieces of ironwork for the machinery in his mills he would take the hammer and make them himself, and has also seen him make and temper the knives for a spoke machine which he used for a time in his bending mill.
He and the late Palmer C. Ricketts were intimate friends in boyhood and remained such during the lifetime of Mr. Ricketts. Mr. Ricketts being of a literary turn of mind, their friendship probably had much to do with forming the literary tastes and shaping the political opinions of Mr. Scott.
Mr. Scott was originally a Democrat, and when only about 23 years of age is said to have aspired to a seat in the General Assembly of his native State. But the leaders of the party failed to recognize his claims, and he shortly afterwards was instrumental in the formation of the first politico temperance organization in this county, and ran for the House of Delegates on the first temperance ticket placed before the people in 1845. For a few years afterwards he took no part in politics, his whole time and talents being engrossed in business, but in 1853 at the solicitation of his friend Ricketts, he consented to be a candidate for County Commissioner, and succeeded in carrying the Fourth district in which he lived, which was then known as the Gibraltar of Democracy, by a small majority, and securing his election by a majority of one vote over Griffith M. Eldredge, his highest competitor on the Democratic ticket.
In 1855 he ran on the American ticket, with the late Samuel Miller and Dr. Slater B. Stubbs, for the House of Delegates, and was elected by a handsome majority.
In 1859 Mr. Scott consented to run on the American ticket for the State Senate. His competitor was the late Joseph J. Heckart, who was elected. This was a memorable campaign on account of the effect produced by the John Brown raid upon the State of Virginia and the capture of Harper's Ferry, which had a disastrous effect upon Mr. Scott's prospects, owing probably to which he was defeated.
At the outbreaking of the war of the rebellion he espoused the Union cause and gave it his hearty support during the continuance of the struggle, and remained a consistent Republican until his death.
In 1864 he was a delegate to represent Cecil county in the Constitutional Convention, his colleagues being Thomas P. Jones, George Earle and the late Joseph B. Pugh. He was assigned to a place upon the Committee on the Elective Franchise and had more to do with originating that section of the Constitution which provided for the passage of a registration law than any other person on the committee--probably more than any other member of the Convention. He was an intimate friend of Henry H. Goldsborough, whom he had previously nominated in the Republican State Convention for the office of Comptroller of the State Treasury, which office he still held, and whom Mr. Scott also nominated for President of the Constitutional Convention in the Republican caucus, and, as was very natural, was often called upon by Mr. Goldsborough to preside over the Convention in his absence, which he did, and with great acceptability to the members of both political parties.
During the invasion of the State in July, 1864, he was one of the most active members in urging upon the loyalists of Annapolis and the military authorities in that city and at Camp Parole the necessity of defending the Capital of the State. He held the handles of the plow with which the first furrow that marked the line of the fortifications around the city was made. It may not be out of place to say that the editor of this book, in company with Mr. Scott, walked along the line of the ditch the morning before, and that the former walked ahead of the team attached to the plow so that the person who led the team might know where to go.
Mr. Scott was also one of about a dozen members who remained in Annapolis for about two weeks, during much of which time the arrival of the rebel raiders was hourly expected, and kept the Convention alive by adjourning from day to day, without which, by the rules adopted for the government of the Convention, it could not have maintained a legal existence.
He was appointed School Commissioner in 1882, which office he filled with great acceptability to the public until incapacitated by the disease which terminated his life.
Mr. Scott, though one of the most amiable of men, was fond of argument when properly conducted, and from the time he was twenty years of age until nearly the close of his life was always ready to participate in a debate if he could find any person to oppose him; and thought it no hardship to walk any where within a radius of four or five miles, in the coldest weather, in order to attend a debating society. He was possessed of a large and varied stock of information and a very retentive memory, which enabled him to quote correctly nearly everything of importance with which he had ever been familiar. His ability in this direction, coupled with a keen sense of the ridiculous and satirical, rendered him an opponent with whom few debaters were able to successfully contend. But it was as a companion, a friend and a poet that he was best known among the people of his neighborhood, to which his genial character and kind and amiable disposition greatly endeared him.
Mr. Scott began to write poetry when about twenty-one years of age, and continued to do so, though sometimes at long intervals, until a short time before his death. His early poems were printed in "The Cecil Whig," but being published anonymously cannot be identified. Like many others, he did not preserve his writings, and a few of his best poems have been lost. Of his poetic ability and religious belief, we do not care to speak, but prefer that the reader should form his own judgment of them from the data derived from a perusal of his poems.
In 1844, Mr. Scott married Miss Agatha R. Fulton, a most estimable lady, who, with their son Howard Scott and daughter Miss Annie Mary Scott, survive him.
--from The Poets and Poetry of Cecil County, Maryland, by George Johnston, 1887
Head of Christiana Church Cemetery
New Castle County
Created by: Katie
Record added: Jul 07, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 93232917
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