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Sam Houston. Daguerreotype from the studio of Mathew B. Brady. Courtesy of the Library of Congress (LC-USZ62-110029).

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Houston, Sam (02 March 1793–26 July 1863), president of the Republic of Texas and U.S. senator, was born Samuel Houston in Rockbridge County, Virginia, the son of Samuel Houston and Elizabeth Paxton, well-to-do planters of Scotch-Irish descent. Houston’s father died in 1806, and he moved with his mother and eight siblings to Blount County, Tennessee, in 1807....

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Russell, Richard Brevard, Jr. (02 November 1897–21 January 1971), senator and political leader, was born in Winder, Georgia, the son of Richard Brevard Russell, a lawyer and judge, and Blandina Dillard. Russell was educated at Gordon Military Institute and at the University of Georgia, where he received a law degree in 1918. After serving only about two months in the navy at the end of World War I in late 1918, he returned to practice law with his father in Winder....

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Worthington, Thomas (16 July 1773–20 June 1827), entrepreneur, politician, and U.S. senator, was born near Charlestown, Berkeley County, Virginia (now Jefferson County, W.Va.), the son of Robert Worthington, a prominent planter, and Margaret Matthews, from Frederickton, Maryland, who was of Irish background. Orphaned by the age of seven, he received little formal education and in May 1791 went to sea for two years. On his return he farmed the Berkeley County estate, took up surveying, and bought up Virginia military land warrants that he located near Chillicothe in the Northwest Territory. In December 1796 he married Eleanor Van Swearingen of Shepherdstown, Virginia, herself an orphan with a rich property. The couple had ten children. In spring 1798 Worthington freed his slaves and moved his family to Chillicothe; they were joined by his brother-in-law and lifelong political ally, ...