History of Iowa From the Earliest Times to the Beginning of the Twentieth Century/4/James P. Sanford
JAMES P. SANFORD was born in Seneca County, New York, November 11, 1832. When thirteen years of age he went to South America and spent four years in that country, Mexico and the West India Islands. In 1851 he located in New Orleans where he remained until 1855 when he removed to Iowa, taking up his residence at Bentonsport. The following year he became a Universalist minister, preaching his first sermon at Big Rock in Scott County on the 22d of March, 1856. He was a public speaker of unusual ability and eloquence and rose rapidly in the profession until in a few years he became one of the most famous ministers in Iowa. Early in the Civil War Mr. Sanford enlisted in the Second Iowa Cavalry and was commissioned first lieutenant and was afterwards promoted to captain. Upon the organization of the Forty-seventh Infantry he was commissioned colonel of that regiment. In 1864 he retired from the service and went to Europe, making an extensive tour of the countries of the old world. Upon his return he lectured on foreign lands and people he had visited. Mr. Sanford crossed the ocean fifteen times and extended his travels into almost every country of the eastern world. Possessed of rare descriptive powers and pleasing address, Colonel Sanford soon won national fame as a lecturer on foreign countries. He eventually became one of the most extensive travelers in America as well as one of the most notable lecturers.