RUEL DURKEE, son of Rufus and Polly Whipple Durkee, and a descendant of Moses Whipple, Esq., was born in Croydon, July 14, 1807. He has ever resided in his native town. His early years were spent in obtaining an education in the common school, and in assisting to carry on a tannery. Later in life he has carried on extensive farming operations, besides attending to much other business.
In addition to the management of his own private concerns, he has acted a conspicuous part in the affairs of the town, and in the politics of New Hampshire. His native shrewdness and knowledge of human nature render him a valuable counselor among his neighbors and townsmen. He has represented the town twice in the State Legislature; and has been elected Selectman eighteen times, fifteen of which he has been chairman of the board. During the rebellion, the financial affairs of the town were managed with so much success by him and his associates, that the war expenses of Croydon were comparatively less than those of any other town in the State. In 1846 he was elected Road Commissioners, and in 1864 he was appointed Messenger to carry the electoral vote of New Hampshire to Washington.
As a politician he is known far beyond the limits of his native town. His opponents give him the credit of possessing a large share of sagacity; and they ascribe to him a controlling influence with the political party to which he belongs. And it will be admitted by all that for years his influence has been very sensibly felt in the councils of the Republican party of New Hampshire.