James Edward Roye (colored) was born in Newark, February 3, 1815, and was educated at the high school and at Ohio University at Athens. He kept a barber shop in Newark, but emigrated to Liberia in 1846, where he became a wealthy merchant and was the first Liberian to make shipments in his own vessel to the United States and Europe.
He was elected to the Liberian house of representatives, chosen speaker in 1849, was chief-justice 1865-68, and in 1870 was elected president. He attempted to unsurp the office for a second term, but was condemned to imprisonment. While attempting to escape he was drowned, February 2, 1872, in the harbor of Monrovia
Historical Collections of Ohio, Vol 2, by Henry Howe. (pub 1888)