He grew up on a farm in Vermont, the oldest of 13 children, and made his way to Fredonia, where he became a self-taught lawyer (such a thing was possible in those days). He eventually became a State Supreme Court justice. The bridegroom was a cousin of Ulysses S. Grant, then an Army lieutenant, who would go on to become a general and president. Today, oil portraits of John and Sarah hang side by side in the New Haven family room of Wendy Grant Haskell, 63, who is a psychotherapist and the Grants great-great-granddaughter. Each is wearing black, and a similarly dour and humorless expression, as if they had whispered to each other beforehand, Dont smile! I think they are trying to project importance, status and prestige, Ms. Haskell said, adding that the portraits were probably painted soon after the wedding. (When I first called Ms. Haskell to inquire about John and Sarah Grant, she was flummoxed; I think she thought I was trying to sell her a Times subscription. When I explained my reason for calling, she said she had no idea the Grants had appeared in the newspapers first wedding announcement. What a hoot!) See the announcement in the first issue of The New-York Daily Times.
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