Cheek, James A.

Biographical Souvenir of the State of Texas, F A Battey & Co 1889
James A. Cheek was born in Mississippi on November, 1833, and came to Texas in 1849. His father, Jesse B.Cheek, was a native of Georgia, who married Martha M. Andrews, daughter of Jamison Andrews, of Mississippi, and to this union were born five children, namely -- Washington, Mary, Frances A., Jesse and James A.
James A. Cheek came to Texas when a single young man, and since residing here has been three times married, first to Miss Martha Grant, who bore him one child that died in infancy; his second wife was Mrs. Mary R. Kinman, a widow, and a daughter of Edward P. Collier, of Tennessee, and to this union was also born one child, Jesse A. Cheek; his third wife bore the maiden name of Fannie E. Spence. When Mr. Cheek first came to Texas he was a poor man, and was in the same condition at the close of the war. He served from 1861 until the end, having enlisted in Company G, Taylor's cavalry regiment, which was afterward converted into infantry. He served in the Indian Territory, in Arkansas and in Missouri, up the Yellow Bayou, and in numerous skirmishes. On returning home he engaged in farming and prospered. In 1886 he engaged in the mercantile business, which he followed two years, but has now retired from all business, and is living in independence on his well-earned competency. He is a Free Mason, and a devoted adherent to the teachings of that august order.
Date Added 12 Apr 2017

Thomas Clendinen Catchings

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

CATCHINGS, Thomas Clendinen, representative, was born in Hinds county, Miss., Jan. 11, 1847. He entered the university of Mississippi in 1859, leaving in l861 to enter Oakland college, but soon after volunteered in the Confederate army, serving during the entire civil war, after which he studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1866, and practised (sic) his profession at Vicksburg, Miss. He was elected to the state senate in 1875 and resigned in 1877 on being nominated for attorney-general by the state; he was elected for a term of four years, and was re-elected in 1881, resigning Feb. 16, 1885, having been elected a representative to the 49th Congress. He was re-elected to each succeeding Congress up to and inclusive of the 56th.

This biography is from the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress:
CATCHINGS, Thomas Clendinen, a Representative from Mississippi; born near Brownsville, Hinds County, Miss., January 11, 1847; was tutored at home; attended the University of Mississippi at Oxford in 1859 and Oakland College in 1861; entered the Confederate Army in 1861 and served as a private in Company A, Eighteenth Mississippi Infantry, and subsequently in Company C, Eleventh (Perrin's) Mississippi Cavalry; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1866 and commenced practice in Vicksburg; elected to the State senate in 1875 but resigned in 1877; elected attorney general of Mississippi in 1877; reelected in 1881 and served until February 16, 1885; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth and to the seven succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1885-March 3, 1901); chairman, Committee on Levees and Improvements of the Mississippi River (Fiftieth Congress), Committee on Railways and Canals (Fifty-second and Fifty-third Congresses), Committee on Rivers and Harbors (Fifty-third Congress); resumed the practice of law; also served as division counsel for the Southern Railway Co.; member of the Mississippi Code Commission by appointment of Governor Vardaman; died in Vicksburg, Miss., December 24, 1927; interment in the City Cemetery.



James Ronald Chalmers

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

CHALMERS, James Ronald, soldier, was born in Halifax county, Va., Jan. 11, 1831, son of Joseph W. Chalmers, U. S. Senator from Mississippi. He was graduated at the South Carolina college in 1851, and in 1853 was admitted to the bar. He was made district attorney in 1858, and in 1861 was a delegate to the secession convention. He was commissioned as colonel of the 9th Mississippi regiment, in 1861, and in February, 1862, was promoted brigadier-general, serving with distinction throughout the war. In 1875 and 1876 he was a member of the Mississippi state senate, and in the latter year was elected a representative in the 45th Congress. He was re-elected to the 46th Congress, and was given a certificate of election to the 47th Congress, but the office was contested and won by John R. Lynch. He was elected to the 48th Congress, and contested the election to the 51st Congress. He died at Memphis, Tenn., April 9, 1898.

This biography is from the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress:

 CHALMERS, James Ronald, (son of Joseph Williams Chalmers), a Representative from Mississippi; born near Lynchburg, Halifax County, Va., January 12, 1831; moved with his parents in 1835 to Jackson, Tenn., and in 1839 to Holly Springs, Miss.; attended St. Thomas Hall, Holly Springs, Miss., and was graduated from South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina) at Columbia in 1851; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1853 and commenced practice at Holly Springs; delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1852; district attorney for the seventh judicial district of Mississippi in 1858; member of the secession convention of Mississippi in 1861; entered the Confederate Army as a captain in March 1861; elected colonel of the Ninth Mississippi Regiment in April 1861; promoted to the rank of brigadier general in February 1862; transferred to the Cavalry service in 1863; in command of the first division of Forrest's cavalry corps; surrendered in May 1865; member of the State senate in 1876 and 1877; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-fifth and Forty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1877-March 3, 1881); presented credentials as a Member-elect to the Forty-seventh Congress and served from March 4, 1881, to April 29, 1882, when he was succeeded by John R. Lynch, who contested the election; elected as an Independent to the Forty-eighth Congress and, after a contest with Van H. Manning as to the legality of his election, took his seat June 25, 1884, and served until March 3, 1885; unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1884 to the Forty-ninth Congress; resumed the practice of law in Memphis, Tenn., where he died April 9, 1898; interment in Elmwood Cemetery.


Ferdinand Leigh Claiborne

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

CLAIBORNE, Ferdinand Leigh, soldier, was born in Sussex county, Va., in 1772; son of William and Mary (Leigh) Claiborne of Manchester, Va.; grandson of Nathaniel (of "Sweet Hall ") and Jane (Dole) Claiborne; great-grandson of Captain Thomas and Ann (Fox) Claiborne; great-great grandson of Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas and ——— (Dandridge) Claiborne, and great-great-great grandson of Secretary William and Elizabeth (Boteler) Claiborne. He was appointed ensign of infantry, U.S. army, 1793, and was promoted captain in 1799. He resigned his commission in the army in 1802, and was chosen brigadier-general of the Mississippi militia in 1811, and when the Creek Indians began hostilities, he recruited a regiment of volunteers and was made its colonel. He was promoted brigadier-general of volunteers and commanded in the engagement at the "Holy Ground," December, 1813. He was elected to the Mississippi legislative council of 1815 and presided over that body. He was married in 1802 to Magdalene, daughter of Col. Anthony Hutchins, an officer in the English army. He died in Natchez, Miss., in 1815.



John Francis Hamtramck Claiborne

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

CLAIBORNE, John Francis Hamtramck, historian and representative, was born in Natchez, Miss., April 24, 1809; son of Gen. Ferdinand Leigh and Magdalene (Hutchins) Claiborne; and grandson of Col. William and Mary (Leigh) Claiborne of Manchester, Va. He was admitted to the Virginia bar in 1825, but did not practice (sic). In 1838 he became editor of a paper published in Natchez by Col. Andrew Marschalk. He was elected to the state legislature before he had attained his majority and was re-elected to the two ensuing terms, at the close of which he removed to Madisonville, Miss. The first state Democratic convention ever held in Mississippi nominated him for representative in congress by acclamation, and after a bitter political canvass he was elected to the 24th congress. He was given a certificate of election to the 25th congress Oct. 3, 1837, but the seat being declared vacant Jan. 31, 1838, and a new election held, he was succeeded by Sergeant S. Prentiss of Vicksburg, May 30, 1838. He edited the Natchez Fair Trader until 1844, when he removed to New Orleans and became editor of the Jeffersonian, of the Statesman, and later of the Louisiana Courier. He was a staunch Democrat, a fearless, brilliant and independent writer, and well known in the literary and political world. In 1853 he was appointed U.S. timber agent for Louisiana and Mississippi by President Pierce; but the latter part of his life was spent upon his beautiful plantation "Dunbarton," near Natchez, Adams county, Miss., where he devoted himself to literary pursuits. There he accumulated a large library and an invaluable collection of historical-genealogical documents and manuscripts, which were nearly all consumed (with two volumes of his history in MSS. ) at the destruction of "Dunbarton" in 1884. He was elected a member of the Royal Historical Society of Great Britain and other learned associations, and the University of Mississippi conferred upon him the degree of LL. D. in 1882. In 1882 he presented to the university and state of Mississippi his valuable collection of state historical papers, the private correspondence and journals of Governor Claiborne, Sir William Dunbar, General Claiborne of the Creek war, George Poindexter, Col. Anthony Hutchins, Livingstone and other eminent men. He was married in 1828 to Martha Dunbar, the heiress to "Dunbarton," by whom he had one son and two daughters. His only sister married the Hon. John H. B. La Trobe, and was the mother of Ferdinand Claiborne La Trobe, elected five times Mayor of Baltimore, Md. Colonel Claiborne served the Confederacy during the civil war. His published writings include: Life and Correspondence of Gen. John A. Quitman (1860); A Life of Daniel Boone; Life and Times of Gen. Samuel Dale (1860); and History of Mississippi as a Province, a Territory and a State (1880). He died at Natchez, Miss., May 17, 1884

 This biography is from the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress:
CLAIBORNE, John Francis Hamtramck, (nephew of William Charles Cole Claiborne and Nathaniel Herbert Claiborne, grandnephew of Thomas Claiborne [1749-1812], great-grandfather of Herbert Claiborne Pell, Jr., great-great-grandfather of Claiborne de Borda Pell, and great-great granduncle of Corinne Claiborne Boggs), a Representative from Mississippi; born in Natchez, Adams County, Miss., April 24, 1809; attended school in Virginia; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1825 and commenced practice at Natchez, Miss.; member of the State house of representatives 1830-1834; moved to Madison County, Miss.; elected as a Jacksonian to the Twenty-fourth Congress (March 4, 1835-March 3, 1837); presented credentials as a Democratic Member-elect to the Twenty-fifth Congress and served from July 18, 1837, until February 5, 1838, when the seat was declared vacant; engaged in newspaper work in Natchez, Miss.; moved to New Orleans, La., in 1844 and resumed newspaper interests; appointed United States timber agent for Louisiana and Mississippi in 1853; author of several historical works; returned to his estate, "Dumbarton," near Natchez, Miss., and died there on May 17, 1884; interment in Trinity Churchyard, Natchez, Miss.


William Charles Cole Claiborne

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

CLAIBORNE, William Charles Cole, senator, was born in Sussex county, Va., in August, 1775; second son of William and Mary (Leigh) Claiborne of Manchester, Va. He was educated at the Richmond academy and William and Mary college, Va., was admitted to the bar, and settled in Nashville, Tenn., where he was appointed judge of the supreme court of the territory. In 1796 he participated in the framing of the state constitution. As a Democrat he represented his district in the 5th and 6th congresses, 1797-1801, where his vote decided the issue in favor of Jefferson's election; and in 1801 he was appointed by President Jefferson governor of the territory of Mississippi, serving 1802-05. He was appointed, Dec. 12, 1804, one of the commissioners to receive the territory of Louisiana, ceded by France under treaty of Oct. 31, 1803; was appointed governor of Orleans by temporary commission, June 8, 1805; by permanent commission, Jan. 17, 1806; recommissioned (sic) Nov. 14, 1808, and Nov. 26, 1811. He was elected governor of Louisiana and served from 1812 to 1816, sharing with General Jackson in the famous defence (sic) of New Orleans. He was elected to the United States senate Jan. 13, 1817, to succeed Senator James Brown, but was prevented by illness from taking his seat in the 15th congress. Governor Claiborne was married three times: first to Eliza Lewis of Nashville, secondly to Clarisse Duralde, daughter of a Spanish officer and magistrate, thirdly to Suzette Booque, who afterward married John Randolph Grimes, the eminent New Orleans lawyer. Governor Claiborne died at New Orleans Nov. 23, 1817, and a monument was erected to his memory by the sculptor St. Gies.


Joseph Beckham Cobb

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

COBB, Joseph Beckham, author, was born in Oglethorpe county, Ga., April 11, 1819; son of Thomas W. Cobb, U.S. senator; grandson of John Cobb, and great-grandson of Thomas Cobb, who migrated from Virginia and settled in Georgia about 1764. Joseph attended the University of Georgia, but was not graduated. He removed to Noxubee county, Miss., in 1838, and devoted himself to literature. In 1851 he was a member of the Whig state convention and was elected to the state senate for several terms. In 1853 he was nominated by the American party as a candidate for representative in the 33rd congress but failed of election. His published works include The Creole, or the Siege of New Orleans (1850); Mississippi Scenes (1850); and Leisure Labors (1858). He died in Columbus, Ga., Sept. 15, 1858.



William Cocke

Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans. Vol. II. Boston, MA, USA: The Biographical Society, 1904

COCKE, William, senator, was born in Virginia in 1747; son of Abraham Cooke; grandson of Stephen Cocke; great-grandson of Thomas Cocke; and great-great grandson of Richard Cocke, who came to Virginia prior to 1632 and was a member of the house of burgesses from Henrico county in that year. In company with Daniel Boone he explored the territory afterward known as East Tennessee and Western Kentucky. In 1776 (see Ramsey's History of Tennessee), with four companies of Virginians, he had a fierce battle with the Indians at Cooke's Fort, Tenn., in which the Indians received a crushing defeat. In 1796 he was elected by the legislature of Tennessee one of the first U.S. senators from that state. He drew the short term commencing Dec. 5, 1796, and served till the close of the first session of the 5th congress, July 10, 1797, when he was succeeded by Andrew Jackson. He had previously been very prominent in the convention which framed the first constitution of Tennessee. He was again elected to the U.S. senate in 1799, serving until March 4, 1805, when he was appointed judge of the first circuit. Removing to Mississippi he was elected to the state legislature, and in 1814 President Madison appointed him agent for the Chickasaw nation. He fought in two wars, served in the legislatures of four states (Virginia, North Carolina, Tennessee and Mississippi) and in the senate of the United States. He was founder of the University of Tennessee, a trustee of Greenville college, and an incorporator of Washington college. He died in Columbus, Miss., in the eighty-first year of his age and was buried there under a tombstone erected to his memory by the state of Mississippi. The date of his death is Aug. 22, 1828.


Josiah A. P. Campbell


Courts, Judges, and Lawyers of Mississippi, 1798-1935, By Dunbar Rowland, B.S., LL.B., LL.D., Press of Hederman Press, Jackson, Mississippi, 1935, pgs 103-110


The old Colonial states of the American Republic have given to Mississippi many illustrious sons, and not one shed more luster upon its name than Judge Josiah A. Patterson Campbell, statesman, soldier, and chief justice of its supreme court.  Judge Campbell’s life covered that period of the State’s history when national epochal events were taking place.  He possessed the talent to plan and design, and the strength of purpose to execute, attributes and qualities that fit men for the accomplishment of difficult task.  No line of least resistance lured him in the performance of public service.  He was not a prater, nor prater fond of airing his own opinions, but a deep student of all questions that affected government and the life of the people.  He was well fitted for high position.  He came of an ancestral line illustrious in the history of the British Isles.  His ancient forbears established the House of Argyle and were among the Scottish chiefs with their numerous shields, tartans, and coats of arms.  One had little difficulty when noting his magnificent frame and lofty, well-posed head in recalling such names as Bruce and Wallace.

In America the family was first represented by several brothers, one of whom settled in Boston, Massachusetts.  A member of the family became a distinguished editor, having established one of the first newspapers in American.  It is the branch of the family that identifies itself with the Cavaliers of Virginia and South Carolina that Mississippians are more interested.  Judge J. A. P. Campbell, of Mississippi was a descendant of this line.  He was born in Lancaster District, South Carolina, March 2, 1830.  At the age of fifteen he removed in 1845 with his parents to Madison County, Mississippi, which was at that time receiving numerous representatives of the best families of the Colonial states.  The boy’s childhood and early youth in South Carolina were strewn with exceptional opportunities.  It was his good fortune to have been the son of educated, cultured parents, a circumstance that contributed largely to his success in life.  Men sometimes fail to reflect birth and environment, but more often than nor these make up the man that we see in later life, let him strive as he may to be otherwise.  To translate an old Latin maxim, “Though you drive out nature with a pitch fork, yet she will return.”

Judge Campbell’s father was a distinguished Presbyterian minister, a graduate of the Princeton Theological Seminary.  That in itself was a great good fortune in the inheritance of the son.

The mother of Judge Campbell was Mary A. Patterson, daughter of Josiah Patterson, a wealthy planter of Abbeville District, South Carolina.  His plantations lay along the Savannah river and were among the finest in the district.  Mary Patterson, like her husband, was educated.  Early records tell us that before they entered higher institution she had “taught her six young children reading, writing, arithmetic, geography and English grammar.”  As in the case with the minds of so many great men aspirations came early to the son of this home who in later years was to become a leader of influence in his adopted State.  He could read before he was four years of age.  Not alone content with intellectual attainment, Mary had a deeper thought and meaning in the preparation of her son for his lifework.  From the Westminister (sic) Shorter Catechism she assisted him early in life in discovering spiritual truths and imbibling (sic) spiritual strength, without which she knew the mind and spirit became brittle, inelastic and incapable of a higher and nobler range of thought.  Her son responded generously to her teaching and early became an earnest student in the realm of both literature and law.  It might be thought much of a miracle, did not the records bear out the truth, that young Campbell was licensed to practice law when he was but a few months older than seventeen years of age.  The young attorney settled in Kosciusko in 1848 where he soon enjoyed a lucrative practice.  At the age of twenty, he married Miss Eugenia S. Nash, a member of an influential family.  Like his father, he was blest in the selection of the woman who was to share his fortunes through life.

It was after they had been married many years that the writer came in contact with these two worthy beings upon whom God had bestowed his most choice gifts.  What the two lives meant in the development and uplift of Mississippi and the city of Jackson, would make a vast volume.  While the woman took little active part in her husband’s public career, with a nature and training like that of all the Southern women of her day, she became his helper, comforter, and inspiration.  Her own life was not without color and individuality.  No more earnest and beautiful spirit than hers has moved among the people of Jackson in every station of the social life of the city.  At the gate of both rich and poor, worthy and unworthy, her carriage was constantly seen, and no woman’s voice had more influence than hers in the affairs of her church.  It is little wonder that the distinguished man who had drawn so much of his inspiration from her should pay her such high tribute in his autobiography.

Writing of Judge Campbell as a young man whom he knew in earlier days, Bishop Charles B. Galloway said: “Among the men of the bar that I, when a youth, remember more distinctly was Hon. J. A. P. Campbell – young tall, erect as a soldier, with long wavy hair, graceful in every movement and handsome as a picture, he was the very embodiment of manly dignity and superb ability.”

No more distinguished name is recorded in the State’s history than that of Judge J. A. P. Campbell.  His whole public life was one continuous advance to high position.  When scarcely more than a youth, at the age 21, while practicing law at Kosciusko, in Attala County, he was elected to the State legislature.  At the age of 29 he became speaker of the house of representatives.

It was at this time that at the age of thirty, he was elected by the Constitutional Committee which adopted the ordinance of secession, one of seven delegates to represent Mississippi in the Provisional congress to form a Southern Confederacy.  When his duties as a member of the Provisional congress had expired, he immediately joined the army and served with honor and distinction as captain, lieutenant-colonel, and colonel.  He was the last survivor of the forty-nine delegates whose names are subscribed to the Constitution of the Confederate States of America.  (For military service see Rpwland’s Military History of Mississippi).

Judge Campbell’s public service was of a broad nature.  During the dark period of reconstruction and military rule that followed the War between the States, he was a member of the committee of which General J. Z. George was chairman that by foresight, boldness, and courage led the movement to free Mississippi from the rule of alien hands and restore the control of the government to the citizens of the State.  “No higher duty”, it has been said, “was ever performed by any man and no step in civilization further advanced than characterized his efforts during the corrupt military rule that followed the war.”

At the close of the war Judge Campbell was elected to preside over the Kosciusko court district.  “This was in a state of confusion almost chaotic through the doubtful status of state currency.”  But throughout this unhappy period in the State’s history he did invaluable work in upholding law and order.

He was elected circuit judge of the fifth judicial district of Mississippi composed of the counties of Attala, Leake, Madison, Yazoo, and Holmes, in 1865, soon after his arrival home from the army, when thirty-five years of age.  He was reelected without making a canvass.

Judge Campbell was a democrat presidential elector, selected by the State convention, but did not attend.  He became judge of the supreme court of Mississippi when forty-six years old and served continuously eighteen years.  He was twice chief justice of the court, missing only eighteen days from his judicial duties.  After serving nine years as supreme judge, he was appointed by Governor Lowry to succeed himself.

In 1870 he was appointed by the governor and confirmed by the senate one of three commissioners to codify the statutes of Mississippi and succeeded in securing several valuable new laws in the interest of the people.  But the legislature amended the work of the commissioners to such an extent that it was injured.  In 1787 an incoming legislature invited him to prepare a new code, which he did while engaged with his duties on the supreme bench.  It was adopted with but little change by the legislature of 1880.  The code of 1880 abound in reformatory laws which have proved of great value to the people.  It contains nearly two hundred sections written solely by Judge Campbell, which were adopted as written, and the record shows that not one has been declared unconstitutional by the supreme court in later years.

The State Bar Association of Mississippi expressed high appreciation of his service as the author of the Code, as is shown by a committee report by C. H. Alexander, himself one of the truly great lawyers of the State.  The report states that Judge Campbell was the “author of more legal reforms than any other lawyer, judge, or legislator in the State.”

Judge Campbell retired from the supreme court in 1894, as full of honors as of years.  A meeting of the bar in attendance was held in the court room, and the following resolutions of high commendation were adopted and signed, and an engrossed copy presented to him and his family:

“Whereas Honorable J. A. P. Campbell, chief justice of the supreme court of Mississippi, is about to retire from service on the bench, and those members of the bar of that court practicing in this city wish to give some expression of the feeling occasioned by an event so important in the history of the judicial department of our State government.

Be it Therefore Resolved, That the long and devoted service of this learned, upright and able judge I such as to inspire, along with universal regret at his retirement, a profound sense of the obligation under which he has put our great commonwealth for the conversation, enrichment, and elevation of its jurisprudence:

Resolved Further, that our admiration for his various endowments and accomplishments as an expounder and codifier and author in large measure of the law under which we live, is not earned than our appreciation of his uniform courtesy and consideration.”

There is a story of Judge Campbell’s retirement from the bench that should be written in the pages of Mississippi history.  Though beyond sixty years of age, he was, owing to a vigorous constitution and perfect health, as well preserved as some are in the prime of life.  His voluntary withdrawal from a most congenial position to which Governor Stone desired to reappoint him, and in which the state bar and public desired his continuance, was the occasion of no little surprise.  The explanation as made to personal friends of Governor Stone was that under a recent change in the law, if Judge Campbell was reappointed, his colleague and devoted friend, Judge Woods, being from the same district, would be forced to retire at the end of his term.  Judge Campbell coupled the withdrawal of his name for renomination (sic) with an earnest appeal that Judge Woods, a lawyer of the first class, be reappointed.  It was an arrangement to which Governor Stone, himself the embodiment of all that was true in Southern manhood, finally agreed.

In 1870, Judge Campbell was elected professor of law in the University of Mississippi, and urged to accept the position but declined.  The university conferred upon him the honorary degree of LL.D. in recognition of his erudition not only as a student in the science of law but for scholarly attainment as well.

He was not in that class of public officials whom the office educates.  His cultural attainments were no crude patchwork, representing a hopeless confusion of ideas.  He brought to official position an educated, trained, and scholarly mind.  Few public men in the history of Mississippi were more gifted in oratory nor more polished as a writer.  He made great speeches that live in the historical literature of the State.  He was much in demand as a public speaker at different periods of his life.  In 1890, by invitation of the legislature, he delivered before the body his great memorial address on the “life and Character of Jefferson Davis”, which was printed and placed in every library of the State and country.  From its pages, Charles B. Galloway said that he drew much of his inspiration for his own great speech.  Some of Judge Campbell’s greatest speeches were made at the time of the overthrow of radical rule in the State.  Eloquent and convincing at all times, when deeply stirred, his eloquence grew impassioned in behalf of the liberties and honor of the State.  While gentle and tender in all his family and social relations, Judge Campbell was fearless in his condemnation of public wrong, and at times his speech was scathing.

In 1874, When Federal soldiers were in control of the State, he delivered a powerful address at Canton before a great audience on Memorial Day, in the face of northern troops.  This was published at the request of the leading citizens of the place.  From the ardent labors in behalf of the State, he, at times loved to turn away to pay tribute to the dead Confederacy; and in 1892 he delivered an address in the old state capitol before the Confederate veterans assembled in convention, that stirred his hearers with pride.  Among the invitations to make addresses of this nature out of the State, the following which he was compelled to decline will interest the Daughters of the Confederacy, among whom are his two loyal daughters.

“The Arlington Confederate Monument Association of the United Daughters of the Confederacy request the honor of your presence at the unveiling ceremonies of the Arlington Confederate Monument, in Arlington National Cemetery, Thursday afternoon, June fourth, at three o’clock, nineteen hundred and fourteen.  Mrs. Daisy McLaurin Stevens, president General United Daughters of the Confederacy; Col. Hilary A. Herbert, Chairman Executive Committee, Arlington Confederate Monument Association.”

Judge Campbell’s death occurred Jan. 10, 1917, in the city of Jackson, surrounded by his large family of devoted children and grandchildren.  “While he was,” one wrote of him at the time of his death, “a landmark of an era that he long survived, and had outlived his day and contemporaries, his survival was singularly free from mental decay.”  He possessed an acute and vivid memory and evinced intense desire to keep in touch with current affairs.  So clear and unprejudiced was his recollection of great events that when historians from the other States visited the State historical department, its Director always sent them to converse with him.  As the body of this great and good man lay in state in the capitol, one who came to view whispered: “I could make no better wish for Mississippi than that all of her sons might be as upright and faithful.”

Although Judge Campbell was eminent in many walks of life, it was as a judge of the courts of his State that he excelled.  Paraphrasing the numerous tributes paid him at death, with a mind evenly evenly (sic) with conservative balance, a native strength of character, a genius for the discernment of the principles of law, and a true sense of justice, he combined a highly be said that he ranked among the great American judges.

Hamilton Henderson Chalmers[1]


Courts, Judges, and Lawyers of Mississippi, 1798-1935, By Dunbar Rowland, B.S., LL.B., LL.D., Press of Hederman Press, Jackson, Mississippi, 1935, pgs 110-113 

“This day appeared in open court Mr. W. L. Nugent who presented an epitome of the life of the Honorable Hamilton Henderson Chalmers, late associate justice of this court, and resolutions commemorative of his death, which were heretofore adopted by a meeting composed of members of the bar of this State, and asked that the same be spread upon the minutes of this court.”

Said deserved epitome and resolutions are as follows:

“Hamilton Henderson Chalmers, second son of Joseph W. Chalmers, was born at the residence of his maternal grandfather, Col. Alex. Henderson, in Rockingham county, N. C., on the 15th of October, 1835, while his father was removing from Virginia to Tennessee.  In March, 1839, he was brought by his father to Holly Springs, Mississippi, where he attended the famous St. Thomas Hall School.  In 1853, he graduated at the Mississippi University, and immediately thereafter came to Jackson, Mississippi, to study law under his cousin, D. C. Glenn.  In 1854 & 5, he was librarian and keeper of the capitol.  In 1856 & 7, he was secretary of the State senate.  In 1857, he was married to Miss Emily H. Erwin, a native of Hinds county, Mississippi, with whom he lived on the happiest terms until his death.  He commenced the practice of law in Yazoo City, Mississippi, and went thence to New Orleans, Louisiana, where he practiced a shirt time in partnership with D. C. Glenn, and then returned to Mississippi, and settled in Hernando.  In 1861, he was appointed district attorney of the 7th judicial district of Mississippi to fill the place of his brother J. R. Chalmers, who had entered the Confederate service.  In 1862, he was appointed in the commissary department of the Confederate States with the rank of major, and while on the staff of his brother, General Chalmers, was slightly wounded in the cavalry engagement at Salem, Mississippi.  In 1865, he was appointed assistant adjutant general on the staff of General Peter B. Stark, which place he held at the surrender.  In 1876, he was appointed by Governor Stone associate justice of the supreme court of Mississippi to fill the unexpired term of Hon. E. G. Peyton.  In 1882 he was appointed as his own successor by Governor Lowry.

“Whereas it has pleased the One Omniscient Judge of the Universe to call from the scene of his labors and usefulness, Hamilton Henderson Chalmers, associate justice of the supreme court of Mississippi, the members of the Mississippi bar, assembled at the capitol, profoundly impressed with the magnitude of the injury that the jurisprudence and society of the State have sustained, desire to formulate, in enduring shape, their convictions as to that injury, as well as their sentiments of affection and respect for the deceased, therefore,

Resolved, That un the death of Judge Chalmers the bench of the State has lost one of its most conservative, upright, attentive, and learned jurists; the bar, one of its most brilliant and successful members, and society, a genial, cultured, amiable, attractive, and hospitable gentleman.

Resolved, That we tender to the members of his bereaved household, our unaffected sympathy and condolence for the irreparable loss they have sustained.  We knew Judge Chalmers well, and can truthfully say, “None knew him but to love him.”

Resolved, That these resolutions, with the annexed sketch of his life, be presented to the supreme court of the State, with the request that they be spread upon its minutes, and that a copy of the same be forwarded to the distressed widow of our deceased brother.”

The following is the reply of the court through its chief justice to the address of the bar in reference to Judge Chalmers:

“The resolutions of the bar will be spread on the minutes, as requested.  The court cheerful joins the bar in an effort to pay tribute to the memory of the lamented dead.  His death was undoubtedly a great public loss, and to the surviving members of the court, it was a personal bereavement.  One of them was for nearly nine years a constant witness of his indefatigable and faithful labors as a judge, and the others during three years of association learned to place the same estimate on him which the longer association of the other enable him to form.  The presence of Judge Chalmers in the consultation room of the court was a continual refreshment to his brethren.  His spirits were so buoyant and his temper so genial as to make all pleasant about him.  His intellect was both sprightly and vigorously.  His Intellectual treasures were great.  He was an able lawyer, and a capable and faithful judge.  The State never had one more faithful.  He was able and willing to work, and the records of this court abound in evidence of his industry, fidelity and ability.  He came on the when the court was hundreds of cases behind hand, and with the ardor of youth, and zeal of an earnest resolve to perform public duty addressed himself to the much needed work of clearing the dockets, and proved a valuable coadjutor in bringing about the desirable condition in which every suitor is bale at each term of the court to have his case disposed of without delay.  There was no shrinking from labor or evasion of duty pr responsibility on the part of Judge Chalmers.  He was ready to do his part, and bear his share of responsibility.  He had a high sense of official duty, and was moved by desire faithfully to perform it.  He was proud of his high position, and conscious of its great responsibility as involving the momentous duty to sit in final judgment on the life, liberty or fortune of the citizen.  He felt the heavy weight of this tremendous responsibility, and strove to meet it in good faith; and there can be little doubt that the exacting nature of his onerous duties as a judge, and the consequent denial of needed recreation hastened the decay which made him a victim to death at an early age after which men usually are capable of their greatest mental achievements.  His surviving brethren of the bench bear willing testimony to his deserts, and take pleasure in honoring his memory.  He richly deserves all the praises bestowed, and is entitled to be held in grateful recollection by the bar and people he served so well.”  

[1] Proceedings of the Mississippi Supreme Court of Monday, January 18, 1885

 Tim Ervin Cooper 

Courts, Judges, and Lawyers of Mississippi, 1798-1935, By Dunbar Rowland, B.S., LL.B., LL.D., Press of Hederman Press, Jackson, Mississippi, 1935, pgs 114-117 

Tim Ervin Cooper, of Jackson, Mississippi, chief justice of the supreme court of Mississippi, was born July 5, 1843, in Copiah county, Mississippi, on a plantation, the son of William A. and Mary E. (Ford) Cooper.  William A. Cooper was a lawyer, and combined planting with his profession.  He was a native of the State, born in Lawrence county, in 1818.  His father, Joseph, was a native of North Carolina, from which State he moved to Mississippi in the early part of the present century.  Joseph’s father was a Baptist minister, and came to what is now Mississippi in the latter part of the eighteenth century.  He was of English-Irish ancestry.  Mary Ford’s father was a lawyer by profession, and at one time was on the circuit bench of Louisiana.  Judge Cooper’s maternal grandfather Ervin, was a colonel in the Revolutionary war.  The Ervins were also of Scot and Irish descent.  William A. Cooper died in 1851, his widow surviving him for a number of years.  They were parents of five children: Walter N., Joseph F., Mary, Tim E., and William.  After the death of the father the family removed to Jackson, and resided there until 1858, when the widow removed to Georgetown, Kentucky.  She remained there until 1860, when Judge Cooper entered the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

The War for Southern Independence interrupted his studies, and he left college to return home for the purpose of enlisting in the Confederate army.  He became a member of Company K, Eighteenth Mississippi Regiment, Burt Rifles, which had been organized at Corinth in April 1861, and his first engagement was at Manassas, where his regiment fought in D. R. Jones’ brigade.  His next battle was at Ball’s Bluff.  His regiment was in nearly all the engagements in northern Virginia and the Peninsular campaign.  He also fought at Savage Station, Malvern Hill, and at Sharpsburg, where he was taken prisoner with his brother, who was wounded.  He was released in time t join his command at Fredericksburg, and participated in that battle, where his regiment was captured.  He his succeeded in making his escape, and going to Baltimore, quietly remaining with friends until his regiment was exchanged.  When he heard of this he went to the Federal Officer and surrendered for an exchange.  He later rejoined his regiment at Fortress Monroe, soon after which his command join Lee in his march into Maryland.  This led him to the field at Gettysburg, where he participated in the second day’s fight, being under General Longstreet.  After that battle he was promoted to sergeant-major and acted as adjutant of the regiment until the close of the war.  From the field of Gettysburg his regiment was ordered to the Western army, and under Bragg was in the battle of Chickamauga, and then at Knoxville against Burnside.  After the latter engagement, the regiment was ordered back to Virginia, and he participated in the battles of the Wilderness, Spotsylvania, Cold Harbor, and all the engagements of that terrible campaign.  He was then in the siege of Petersburg.  During this siege he received a furlough home, arriving there in February, 1865.  Before he was ready to return to the scene of action, the enemy had cut off his communications and he was unable to rejoin the army before the surrender.  Though only seventeen years of age at the time of his enlistment, he made a fine record as a soldier, being always ready for active duty, and discharged his duties with credit to himself and to the confederacy.

After the war young Cooper read law in the office of William Yerger for a time and was then with King & Mayes at Gallatin.  He was admitted to practice at the latter place in 1866, and from there went to Monticello, where he began practicing his profession, remaining there some five months.  He then moved to Crystal Springs, Mississippi, where he practiced with success until 1872, at which time he opened an office at Hazlehurst, Copiah county, Mississippi.  He was not only successful there at the bar, but he established himself as a lawyer of unusual abilities, and attracted the attention of the people of the State.  In February, 1881, he was called from his practice to accept the position of associate justice of the supreme court to succeed Judge James Z. George, who had been elected to the United States senate.  He was reappointed in 1888, and  served until 1894 when he became chief justice of the supreme court, serving in that capacity until his resignation on December 1, 1896.  Judge Cooper shortly after his resignation moved to Memphis, Tennessee, and resumed the practice of law, in which he was most successful.  In 1907 Judge Cooper relinquished his large and lucrative practice in Memphis and returned to Jackson, where he remained until his death, which occurred on February 8, 1928.  Until two years before his death important cases were still brought to him to gain the advantages of his profound legal experience.

Judge Cooper married in Adams county, Mississippi, November 1, 1866, Mary E., daughter of John B. and Ella (Grafton) Dicks, and to them were born nine children: Barber D., Mary Cooper Holder, Rufin Tim E., Ella. M., Mayes, Barlett, John, and Joseph.  He was a member of the L.O. O. F/, and K. and P.  He had three brothers in the Confederate army, Walter was a member of the eighteenth Mississippi, and served chiefly in army of northern Virginia, and Joseph and William were in the cavalry service.

The following portraiture of Judge Cooper which appears in numerous memoirs of Mississippi, was made while he was on the supreme bench: “Judge Cooper is a man about five feet, eight inches high, with a finely chiseled, intellectual face, well proportioned figure, rather inclined to corpulency (sic) but not to an extent to impair the lightness and activity of his motions.  His eyes are blue and full, his hair light brown, his forehead expansive and marked with thought, his bearing is easy, yet dignified and his whole manner indicative of a man possessed of intellectual power.  He is a man of noble instincts and liberal in his views, kind and generous in his disposition, with simple, unaffected and true manners.  He took his post where nature and education placed him – in the very front rank of the profession.  He maintained his ground with lawyers that are classed among the most gifted in the country, while he is still at the period of life where ambition points to and mental activity assures, a higher fame.  As an advocate Judge Cooper is forceful d convincing; his command of language is good and his delivery attractive.  He makes himself master of all the facts and law points of the case, and then he presents them with great force and effectiveness.  His knowledge of the law, his love of justice, his high sense of honor, his poise of mind, qualify him in an eminent degree for the bench where he has the confidence of the bar and the people.”


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