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McGuire, James C., 1867-



  • Existence: 1867-1930
  • Existence: 1867 - 1930

Biographical Note

James Clark McGuire was born on September 21st, 1867, near Ellicott City, Maryland, to Joseph D. and Anna (Chapman) McGuire. He was the great grandnephew of President James Madison. James entered Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 1884, and graduated with a degree in engineering in 1888. While at Rensselaer, he was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. After he graduated, he worked for the U.S. Geological Survey, the Phoenix Bridge Company, the U.S. Treasury department, and he also worked on the Nicaragua Canal, though the precise dates are unknown. In 1896, he became an independent engineer and contractor, working in New York City. Sometime during the 1900’s, he became the President and General Manager of the Porterfield Construction Company, the Centerfield Company, the Mayfield Construction Company, and the Brookfield Construction Company. Whether he was the president and general manager of all the companies at the same time is unknown. In 1925, he was elected president of the Knickerbocker Hospital in New York City, where he directed the expansion of the hospital, and its move to 70 Convent Avenue, where it still stands today. It is now the M. Moran Weston Seniors' Residence. In 1928, he established the “James C. McGuire Foundation,” with Rensselaer, and in 1930, he was elected as a Trustee of the Institute. Through the fund, he was able to provide for his sister, Mary, after his death, and he contributed a large sum to Rensselaer, as well. James had a substantial estate, through real estate and bank stocks, and he collected a wide array of early woodcuts and art in his later years. Most of his woodcut collection came from the late 1400’s. He also had a collection of papers, one of which, written by President Madison to George Washington, can be viewed online through the Smithsonian Libraries. James worked at the Knickerbocker Hospital until his death, on December 7th, 1930.

Found in 1 Collection or Record:

James C. McGuire scrapbook

 Item — Box 1
Identifier: MC 86

The McGuire scrapbook consists of various newspaper clippings, poems, cards, and letters from McGuire's time as a student at Rensselaer, ranging from 1884 to 1888. This scrapbook offers a view into student life at RPI during the mid to late 1880's.

Dates: Created: 1884-1888