Roswell S. Cheves was born on a cotton plantation in Crawford county, Georgia, February 23, 1844. He entered the Confederate service in 1861 and was a prisoner of war at Point Lookout, Maryland, when General Lee surrendered. Losing his fortune in the South, he moved to Kentucky in 1866 and lived in that State for 20 years, teaching school and practising law. An active Democrat, he was a Tilden elector for the 9th Congressional District of Kentucky in 1876, and owned and edited the Mt. Sterling Democrat for several years. In 1880 he was elected Grand Chief Templar of the I.O.G.T., serving that order faithfully for six years. For twelve years he was regularly elected representative to the Right Worthy Grand Lodge.
In 1880 Mr. Cheves became a convert to the Prohibition Party, attended the conference in Chicago in 1882 that reorganized the party and has been, since that date, an active worker and party organizer in many of the Northern and Southern states. He was active as a speaker in the campaign of 1884 in Maine for constitutional amendment, and also did effective work in the States of Ohio, Tennessee, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania in their campaigns for constitutional amendments prohibiting the manufacture and sale of intoxicating liquors. He aided in organizing the party in Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi, Virginia, North Carolina, and Maryland, and participated in all the National campaigns, doing effective work in many states, North and South, from Maine to Mississippi. In 1894 he was the Prohibition Party candidate for Congress from the first district of Tennessee.
In 1887 Colonel Cheves removed to New York city. Under his management, in 1890 and 1891, Prohibition Park became a prosperous enterprise,. Since 1892 he has been successfully connected with large iron and lumber interests in East Tennessee. In 1869 he joined the Christian denomination and is an elder in that church in Unicoi, Tennessee, where he now lives.
Data from An Album of Representative Prohibitionists (1895)