Emile Jacques was born on February 2, 1925 in Lewiston, Maine to Florestine (Hemond) and Ovid Jacques, two Canadian immigrants from Plessisville, PQ. He served in the Marine Corps for two years beginning around 1943. After the war, he owned a motorcycle shop and raced motorcycles competitively around New England and Canada for 11 years, sometimes racing as “Bill Peterson.” He later owned Twin City Cigarette, which was a Lewiston cigarette shop. He went to the New York Institute of Criminology for two years, and then became active in Lewiston politics. He served as Ward 3 Alderman from 1954 to 1958, as a Legislator from 1955-1961, as Mayor from 1960-1962, and as State Senator from 1961-1967. While serving as State Senator on the 100th Maine legislature he was a member of the Industrial and Recreational Committee and the Development and Congressional Redistricting Committee. He was also chosen Senate Minority Leader in 1963 and served two terms as Ward 7 Alderman from 1962 to 1964.
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Nicoll, Don and Richard, Mike, "Jacques, Emile "Bill" oral history interview" (1999). Edmund S. Muskie Oral History Collection. 181.