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Bloomfield, Joseph (18 October 1753–08 October 1823), lawyer, soldier, and politician, was born in Woodbridge, New Jersey, the son of Moses Bloomfield, a physician, and Sarah Ogden. The family was one of the most prominent in colonial New Jersey. His father had received a first-rate medical education in Edinburgh, Scotland, and had a thriving practice in Middlesex County by the time Joseph was born. Joseph’s mother was a member of a wealthy and influential family of Elizabethtown, which further assured Joseph’s upper-class pedigree. His education and choice of occupation were in line with his social standing. While in his early teens, he attended the Reverend Enoch Green’s classical academy in Deerfield, Cumberland County, at the opposite end of the province from Woodbridge. Upon graduation, Bloomfield returned to East Jersey, determined to be a lawyer. He entered the profession at the top, studying in Perth Amboy with Cortlandt Skinner, attorney general of New Jersey, and was admitted to the bar in November 1774. Setting up practice in Bridgeton, Cumberland County, he soon became known and respected in all of New Jersey’s southern counties. The future seemed secure, had not the American Revolution intervened....

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Quitman, John Anthony (01 September 1799–17 July 1858), Mexican War general and southern secessionist, was born in Rhinebeck, New York, the son of Frederick Henry Quitman, a Lutheran minister, and Anna Elizabeth Hueck. His father achieved considerable prominence as a minister, and John, in turn, was educated privately for the ministry. From the fall of 1816 until the summer of 1818, he taught and pursued theological studies at Hartwick Seminary in Hartwick, New York. He then became adjunct professor of English at Mount Airy College, a Catholic academy near Philadelphia, before moving to Ohio in the fall of 1819 to pursue a career in law. Though he passed Ohio’s bar examination in July 1821, he became discouraged by the state’s depressed economy due to the panic of 1819 and traveled, almost penniless, to Natchez, Mississippi, where he arrived in December 1821. The next month, however, he passed Mississippi’s bar requirements and soon established a lucrative legal practice, becoming a leading figure in the Mississippi State Bar Association. Marriage in 1824 to Eliza Turner, the niece of the influential Edward Turner, provided John with social respectability. They had ten children. The transplanted northerner relished southern institutions, and through his marriage and subsequent purchases he acquired a Natchez mansion, four plantations in Mississippi and Louisiana, and several hundred slaves....