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Nathaniel Matthew Griggs

Member From: 1883 - 1884

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  • Birth Date: 1857 Birth Place:Farmville, Virginia
  • Death Date: July 5, 1919
  • Gender: Male Race: African American
  • Spouse: Fannie Evans (m. July 24, 1879)
  • Children: Four sons, three daughters
  • Religion:
  • Education:
  • Military Service:
  • Occupation/Profession: employee at the Bureau of Printing and Engraving, porter, jeweler
  • Additional Info Links: Bio from Virginia's Martin Luther King Jr. Commission
    Bio from Encyclopedia Virginia
  • Bio: ​Nathaniel M. Grigg was born a slave in 1857 in Farmville to Matthew and Nicy Washington. He attended night school and was a tobacco factory worker but was soon discharged for making political speeches. He entered politics and was appointed deputy collector of internal revenue. He represented Prince Edward County in the Virginia House of Delegates from 1883 to 1884 and Amelia, Cumberland, and Prince Edward Counties in the Senate of Virginia from 1887 through 1890. After serving a single term, he won election to the state Senate in 1887, this time as a Readjuster and defeating a Republican. In neither position did Griggs hole high-ranking committee assignments; he supported the funding of public schools and opposed measures designed to prevent African Americans from voting. Griggs served one term in the Senate and then moved to Washington, D.C. where he was employed by the Bureau of Printing and Engraving. After the failure of the Republican Party to win reelection in the presidential election of 1892, Mr. Grigg went to work as a jeweler for the Wanamaker Company in Philadelphia. He returned to Farmville in 1919 and died there that year.
  • Other Notable Service and/or Elected Offices: Senate of Virginia - 1887 - 1890
Session District District Number Party Leadership Committees
1883-1884 Prince Edward Republican Banks, Currency and Commerce
Labor and the Poor

*The information within this interactive and searchable application has been researched extensively by the House Clerk’s Office. As with any historical records of this age and breadth, there may be discrepancies and/or inconsistencies within records obtained from a variety of credible sources. Any feedback is encouraged at history@house.virginia.gov.

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