1833–1891

Introduction

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Born: Jan­u­ary 24, 1833, Wash­ing­ton, DC.

Died: June 20, 1891, Ports­mouth, Vir­gin­ia.

Buried: Ce­dar Grove Ce­me­te­ry, Ports­mouth, Virg­inia.

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Biography

Born Ro­bert Grif­fin, he lost both his par­ents in a car­riage ac­ci­dent when he was an in­fant. He was adopt­ed by his mo­ther’s sis­ter, Mary Ann King, and her hus­band, Sam­u­el John­son Sta­ples and he was giv­en the name Ro­bert Grif­fin Sta­ples. He was the hus­band of An­nie Ma­ria Fow­ler.

During the Am­er­i­can ci­vil war, he served in the Un­ion Ar­my of the Po­to­mac as a cap­tain, then ma­jor, in the Quar­ter­mas­ter De­part­ment. His ar­my ser­vice was re­mem­bered the rest of his life: More than one obi­tu­a­ry re­ferred to him as Ma­jor Sta­ples.

After the war, Sta­ples was chief clerk in the Na­vy Yard in Ports­mouth, Vir­gin­ia, un­til the se­cond term of pre­sident Ulys­ses S. Grant (1873), when he be­came post­mas­ter of Ports­mouth, a po­si­tion he held eight years.

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