Pugh, James L. (James Lawrence), 1820-1907

Alternative names
Birth 1820-12-12
Death 1907-03-09

Biographical notes:

Representative and senator from Alabama.

From the description of Signature to printed form : Washington, [n.d.]. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 270615788

Pugh, a lawyer from Eufaula, Alabama, was elected to Congress in 1859 and resigned in 1860 when Alabama seceeded from the Union. He served in the Confederate Congress, 1862-1865. In 1880, he was elected to the U.S. Senate and served until 1897.

From the description of Papers, 1888-1905. (Auburn University). WorldCat record id: 29228742

Pugh was born near Waynesboro, Burke Co., Ga., on 1819 May 3, to Robert and Anne Silvia Tilman Pugh. After the death of Mrs. Pugh in 1824, the family moved to Pike Co., Ala., and settled on public lands immediately west of the Pea River. After his father's death in 1830, Pugh moved in with his cousin James Pugh, at Louisville, Barbour Co., Ala. He attended various schools in Barbour, Autauga, and Henry Co., Ala. from 1832-1833. In 1834 he attended night school in Irwinton, Ala., and clerked for Selden Walkley during the day. In 1835 he began reading law under John Gill Shorter, and was admitted to the bar in 1841, but not before serving in the Eufaula Rifles in 1836 at the outbreak of the Creek War. He practiced law in Eufaula, Barbour Co., Ala., for thiry-nine years - twelve years with Jefferson Buford, and later with Judge John Cochran. He campaigned for Whig presidential candidates in the 1840's, but in 1850 became a Democrat. He married Sarah S. Hunter in 1847, was an unsuccessful candidate for Congress in 1849, but was elected to that body in 1859. He resigned from the Congress when Ala. seceded from the Union, and joined the Eufaula Rifles of the CSA. He was elected to the First and Second Congresses of the Confederate States, serving from 1862-1865.

At the end of the war he resumed the practice of law at Eufaula, was elected president of the state Democratic and Conservative party, was a member of the 1875 state constitutional convention, was defeated by two votes for U.S. Senate in 1878, but was elected to the Senate in 1880 to fill out the unexpired term of George S. Houston, and re-elected in 1884 and 1890. He was chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee in the 53rd and 54th Congresses, and in 1888 declined President Grover Cleveland's offer to appoint him a U.S. supreme court justice due to his age. He and his wife had six children. He died in 1907 Mar. 9 in Washington, D.C., and is buried in Eufaula, Barbour Co., Ala.

From the description of Collection, 1860-1946. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122368245


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Ark ID:


  • Presidents--Racial attitudes
  • Political Campaigns
  • Bimetallism
  • Secession
  • Sectionalism (United States)
  • Legislators
  • Tariff--Law and legislation
  • Slavery in the United States--Controversial literature--1860
  • Politics, Practical
  • Shingles (Disease)
  • Racism
  • Elections


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  • Alabama (as recorded)
  • Barbour County (Ala.) (as recorded)
  • Eufaula (Ala.) (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • New York (as recorded)
  • United States (as recorded)
  • Alabama (as recorded)
  • Alabama--Alabama (as recorded)
  • Eufaula (Ala.) (as recorded)