James Smith Bush

James Smith Bush

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James Smith Bush

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Rev. James Smith Bush (June 15, 1825 – November 11, 1889) was an attorney, Episcopal priest, and religious writer, and an ancestor of the Bush political family. He was the father of business magnate Samuel Prescott Bush, grandfather of US Senator Prescott Bush, great-grandfather of former US President George H. W. Bush and great-great-grandfather of former US President George W. Bush.


James Smith Bush was born in Rochester, New York to Obadiah Newcomb Bush and Harriet Smith (1800–1867).

Yale University

Bush entered Yale University in 1841 (class of 1844), the first of what would become a long family tradition, as his grandson Prescott Sheldon Bush, great-grandsons George H.W. Bush, Prescott Sheldon Bush, Jr. and William H.T. Bush, great great-grandson George W. Bush, and great-great-great-granddaughter Barbara are all Yale alumni. He is accounted among the over 300 Yale alumni and faculty who supported in 1883 the founding of Wolf's Head Society. After Yale, he returned to Rochester and studied law, joining the bar in 1847.

First marriage

His first wife, Sarah Freeman, lived in Saratoga Springs. They married in 1851, but she died 18 months later during childbirth.

This prompted Bush to study divinity with the rector of the Episcopal church...
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