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Allen, Henry Watkins (29 April 1820–22 April 1866), Confederate soldier and governor of Louisiana, was born in Prince Edward County, Virginia, the son of Thomas Allen, a physician, and Ann Watkins. Allen and his family moved from Virginia to Ray County, Missouri, when he was thirteen. His father secured him a position working in a store, but Allen found business distasteful and enrolled in Marion College at age fifteen. At seventeen he ran away from college and traveled to Grand Gulf, Mississippi, where he became a tutor on a plantation a few miles outside of town. After tutoring for two years, Allen moved to Grand Gulf to open his own school and to study law. On 25 May 1841 he received his license to practice law in Mississippi. In 1842, when Allen was becoming an established lawyer in Mississippi, President ...

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Barksdale, William (21 August 1821–03 July 1863), congressman and Confederate officer, was born in Rutherford County, Tennessee, the son of William Barksdale and Nancy Hervey Lester, farmers. He was educated in the local schools and briefly attended the University of Nashville. After his father’s death, William and his three brothers moved in 1837 to Mississippi, where they began separate careers. William settled near Columbus, read law, was admitted to the bar, and invested in land and a small number of slaves before he was twenty-five years old. During the Mexican War, he was appointed captain and served as a commissary officer under General ...

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Bate, William Brimage (07 October 1826–09 March 1905), Confederate general, governor, and U.S. senator, was born in Bledsoe’s Lick (now Castalian Springs), Sumner County, Tennessee, the son of James Henry Bate and Amanda Weathered, planters. William Bate received the rudiments of education at a local school, later named the Rural Academy, which he attended until age sixteen. At that time, 1842, his father died, and Bate took a job as a clerk on the steamboat ...

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Battle, Cullen Andrews (01 June 1829–08 April 1905), politician and soldier, was born in Powelton, Georgia, the son of Cullen Battle, a wealthy planter, and Jane A. Lamon. He moved with his parents to Irwinton (now Eufaula), Alabama, in 1836. After graduating from the University of Alabama in 1850, he studied law with John G. Shorter, who was later state governor, and was admitted to the bar in 1852. Battle soon entered a partnership with former Alabama chief justice William P. Chilton. The year before his admittance to the bar he married Georgia F. Williams, with whom he had four children....

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Bonham, Milledge Luke (25 December 1813–27 August 1890), governor, congressman, and soldier, was born in South Carolina’s Edgefield District, the son of James Bonham and Sophie Smith, planters. His father died when he was two, and his mother saw to his education. Bonham attended private academies before graduating from South Carolina College in 1834. He entered the legal profession, engaged in local politics, and became prominent in state military affairs, rising to the rank of major general of militia. He led a brigade of Palmetto State volunteers in the Seminole War of 1836, a position that helped win him a stint in the state house of representatives (1840–1844). In 1845 he married Ann Griffin; they had fourteen children....

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John Cabell Breckinridge. Hand-colored lithograph on paper, c. 1865, by Currier & Ives Lithography Company. National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.

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Breckinridge, John Cabell (21 January 1821–17 May 1875), vice president of the United States and Confederate general, was born in Lexington, Kentucky, the son of Joseph Cabell Breckinridge and Mary Clay Smith. Breckinridge was an only son born into a devoutly Presbyterian family that was distinguished by its leading role in the early history of the Jeffersonian Republican party in Kentucky. His grandfather was a U.S. senator, and his father was a lawyer and Kentucky state representative whose death in 1823 left the young Breckinridge to be raised by his mother and a grandmother at a family estate near Lexington. Breckinridge graduated from Centre College, Kentucky, in 1839, read law at the College of New Jersey in Princeton, and returned home to finish his legal studies at Transylvania University. He received his law degree in 1841 and moved to Burlington, Iowa, to start his law practice. Two years later he was permanently back in Kentucky, where he married Mary Cyrene Burch in 1843; they had six children....

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Buckner, Simon Bolivar (01 April 1823–08 January 1914), Confederate lieutenant general and governor of Kentucky (1887-1891), Confederate lieutenant general and governor of Kentucky (1887–1891), was born at his family’s home, “Glen Lily,” in Hart County, Kentucky, the son of Aylett H. Buckner, a planter and iron manufacturer, and Elizabeth Ann Morehead. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point in 1844. For gallant and meritorious conduct during the Mexican War Buckner was breveted captain. Before and after that war he served as a tactical officer at West Point and in other military posts....

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Butler, Matthew Calbraith (08 March 1836–14 April 1909), Confederate general and U.S. senator, was born in Greenville, South Carolina, the son of William Butler (1790–1850), a U.S. naval surgeon, and Jane Tweedy Perry. The eleventh of sixteen children, Butler spent his early youth in the South Carolina upcountry and attended Greenville Academy. In 1848 he accompanied his father, who had been appointed an agent to the Cherokee Indians, to Fort Gibson in the Indian Territory. His father died in 1850, and in 1851 Butler returned to South Carolina, settling in Edgefield, where he lived with U.S. senator ...

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Chalmers, James Ronald (11 January 1831–09 April 1898), Confederate general and U.S. congressman, was born in Halifax County, Virginia, the son of Joseph W. Chalmers, a lawyer, and Fannie Henderson. In 1839 the family moved to Holly Springs, Mississippi; his father became a prominent attorney there and served in the U.S. Senate. James Chalmers attended South Carolina College, graduating in 1851. Returning to Holly Springs, he studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1853. Between 1853 and 1858 he practiced law in Holly Springs. In 1858 he was elected district attorney and served in this office until 1861. He married Rebecca Arthur around 1865; they had one daughter. A Democrat in politics, he supported secession after Lincoln’s election and served as chairman of the committee on military affairs in the state convention of 1861 that took Mississippi out of the Union....

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Churchill, Thomas James (10 March 1824–14 May 1905), soldier and politician, was born near Louisville in Jefferson County, Kentucky, the son of Samuel Churchill and Abby Oldham, farmers. After graduating from St. Mary’s College in Bardstown in 1844, Churchill attended Transylvania University and studied law. He joined the First Kentucky Mounted Riflemen Regiment as a lieutenant at the beginning of the Mexican War. Enemy cavalrymen captured Churchill in January 1847, and he remained a prisoner in the city of Mexico until the war had almost ended. Churchill purchased a plantation near Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1848 and began raising cotton. In 1849 he married Ann Sevier; they had four children. He received an appointment as postmaster at Little Rock in 1857....

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Clark, Charles (24 May 1811–17 December 1877), governor of Mississippi and Confederate general, was born the son of James Clark and Charlotte Alter, farmers. The third of ten children in a Methodist family that had moved from Maryland to Ohio, Clark graduated from Augusta College in Kentucky in 1831. He then accompanied an uncle to Mississippi, read law and then practiced law and taught school in Natchez. In 1835 he moved to Fayette in Jefferson County upon his marriage to Ann Eliza Darden, who was to bear him a son and three daughters. Espousing the pro-banking and internal improvements policies of Clay Whiggery, he served in the Mississippi House of Representatives from 1838 to 1844. During the Mexican War he raised a volunteer company and served as colonel of the Second Mississippi Infantry....

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Cobb, Thomas Reade Rootes (10 April 1823–13 December 1862), lawyer and Confederate congressman and military officer, was born in Jefferson County, Georgia, the son of John Addison Cobb, a planter, and Sarah Robinson Rootes. His older brother, Howell Cobb—congressman, governor, and secretary of the treasury under ...

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Cockrell, Francis Marion (01 October 1834–13 December 1915), Confederate general and U.S. senator, was born in Johnson County, Missouri, the son of Joseph Cockrell, a sheriff, and Nancy Ellis. He attended local schools and then Chapel Hill College in adjoining Lafayette County, from which he graduated in 1853. That same year he married Arethusa Dorcas Stapp. He taught at the college the following year while studying law. Admitted to the bar in October 1855, Cockrell returned to Johnson County to establish his practice in Warrensburg. He had inherited considerable land holdings from his father and, by special act of the Missouri legislature in 1852, had been granted his legal majority to manage these. His wife died in 1859, leaving him with two small children. He actively participated in Democratic politics and in 1860 received appointment to the Board of Curators of the University of Missouri....

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Alfred H. Colquitt. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-113057).

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Colquitt, Alfred Holt (20 April 1824–26 March 1894), Confederate military officer and politician, was born in Walton County, Georgia, the son of Walter T. Colquitt, an attorney and later a judge, congressman, and U.S. senator, and Nancy Lane. Graduating from Princeton University in 1844, Colquitt studied law and was admitted to the bar in Georgia in 1846....

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Cook, Philip (30 July 1817–20 May 1894), soldier and congressman, was born in Twiggs County, Georgia, the son of Philip Cook, a cotton planter and former field officer in the Eighth U.S. Infantry, and Martha Wooten. Cook was educated at a local academy, which he left in 1836 to join a volunteer company recruited for service in Florida during the Seminole Wars. When his enlistment was up, he attended Oglethorpe University in Milledgeville, Georgia, and the law school of the University of Virginia, graduating from the latter in 1841. The following year he married Sara Lumpkin; they had two children. Thereafter, except for three terms in the state legislature, one in the lower house (1854) and two in the senate (1859–1860, 1863–1864), Cook practiced law in the town of Oglethorpe....

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Cox, William Ruffin (11 March 1832–26 December 1919), army officer and politician, was born at Scotland Neck, Halifax County, North Carolina, the son of Thomas Cox, a businessman and planter, and Olivia Norfleet. He graduated from Franklin College and studied law at Lebanon College, both in Tennessee. Thereafter he practiced law for some years in that state before returning to North Carolina in 1857 to marry Penelope Battle. The marriage brought a fine plantation in Edgecombe County, where he took up his abode....

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Daniel, John Warwick (05 September 1842–29 June 1910), Confederate soldier, legal scholar, and U.S. senator, was born in Lynchburg, Virginia, the son of William Daniel, Jr., a lawyer and judge, and Sarah Ann Warwick. He attended private schools in the Lynchburg area; after attending Lynchburg College from 1855 to 1859, he enrolled in a classical school administered by Dr. Gessner Harrison. When Virginia seceded from the Union in 1861, Daniel interrupted his education to enlist in the cavalry. He rose to major and fought in several battles, including Gettysburg. At the battle of the Wilderness in 1864 he received a wound that put him on crutches for the remainder of his life and earned him the sobriquet of the “Lame Lion of Lynchburg.”...

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Fenner, Charles Erasmus (14 February 1834–24 October 1911), soldier, jurist, and education leader, was born in Jackson, Tennessee, the son of Erasmus Darwin Fenner and Annie America Callier. Fenner’s father was a prominent physician in New Orleans and the founder of the New Orleans Medical and Surgical Journal...