James W. Ivey was born April 12, 1832, in Houston, Georgia; son of Barney Ivey and Elsie Davis, daughter of Windell Davis, a North Carolinian. His great-grandfather emigrated from Londonderry, Ireland, at an early day. James W. was instructed in youth at the public schools of Alabama, after which he went for three and one-half years to Princeton College, New Jersey, and there graduated, taking a legal and literary diploma; some years later Mr. Ivey took a medical diploma in New Orleans, La. At twenty-one years of age James, as well as his brothers, received from his father $50,000 as a start, and with this capital he opened a large farm in Rusk County, Texas, having one league and a labor of land. At the close of the war he set free 110 engross, and found himself in possession of $95,000 Confederate money. In 1854 he married Charlotte Bell, daughter of Jack Bell and sister to the well-known Lucien B. (Hooley) Bell. His wife died in 1865, leaving him one son, now living, who is editor and proprietor of the Tahlequah Telephone. At the outbreak of the war Mr. Ivey joined the Confederate service, Twenty-eight Texas Cavalry, under Colonel Horace Randell, and from private rapidly rose to be colonel of this regiment, under General Walker. He was present at Fort De Rousse, Milliken Bend, Perkins’ Landing and many other engagements. Mr. Ivey was an old-time Whig till after the war, when he became a Republican, and took an active part in the political campaign in Texas in 1871 and 1873. On the day Hayes was elected Mr. Ivey left Bonham and went to Alabama, where he became engaged in the political struggle of 1875 and 1876, in three districts of Alabama. In 1878 he left Texas and moved to Cherokee Nation, where he has been since residing, most of his time being devoted to teaching, for which he is eminently fitted, as he is undoubtedly one of the best educated men in the nation.
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