Linn Banks

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Linn Banks (January 23, 1784 – January 13, 1842) was a 19th-century politician and lawyer from Virginia. He was born in Culpeper County, Virginia (today part of Madison County) to parents Adam Banks and Gracey James. He married on April 2, 1811 to Eliza Jane Hunter Sanders.[1] He was the great, great grandson of Adam Bankes, emigrant to Stafford County, Virginia from the Wigan, Lancashire area of England in the mid-17th century.[2]

Banks attended the College of William & Mary[3] studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1809. He served in the War of 1812.[4] He was a member of the Virginia House of Delegates from 1812 to 1838 and served as Speaker of the House from 1817 to 1838.[5] He hosted the Marquis de Lafayette on his return visit to Virginia.[6] He was elected a Democrat to the United States House of Representatives to fill the seat vacated by John M. Patton's resignation in 1838, serving until 1841. He was re-elected by a narrow vote over former State Senator William "Extra Billy" Smith, who successfully contested the results and assumed Banks' congressional seat.[5]

Afterward, he resumed practicing law and served as a colonel in the Virginia Militia. Banks died on January 13, 1842 while attempting to ford the Conway River near Wolftown, Virginia and drowned. He was interred in the family cemetery on his estate called "Vale Evergreen" near Graves Mill, Virginia.[5]


  1. ^ Wake Co., NC Marriages (bonds) and International Genealogical Index, batch M5106002, p 2898 - extraction of county marriage records
  2. ^
  3. ^ Mrs. P.W. Hiden, "Adam Banks of Stafford Co., VA", Tyler's Quarterly, vol 15, p 248
  4. ^ Yowell's History of Madison County, Virginia, p 68
  5. ^ a b c Biographical Directory of the American Congress, 1774-1971, GPO, 1971, p 548.
  6. ^ Mrs. P. W. Hiden, "Adam Banks of Stafford Co., VA", Tyler's Quarterly, vol 15, p 248.

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U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
John M. Patton
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Virginia's 13th congressional district

April 28, 1838 – December 6, 1841 (obsolete district)
Succeeded by
William Smith