QUITMAN, John Anthony

1798–1858

Biography

QUITMAN, John Anthony, a Representative from Mississippi; born in Rhinebeck, Dutchess County, N.Y., September 1, 1798; pursued classical studies and was graduated from Hartwick Seminary in 1816; instructor in Mount Airy College, Pennsylvania, in 1818; studied law; was admitted to the bar; moved to Chillicothe, Ohio, in 1820, and thence to Natchez, Miss., in 1821, where he practiced law; member of the State house of representatives in 1826 and 1827; chancellor of the State from 1828 until 1835, when he resigned; member of the State constitutional convention in 1832; served in the State senate in 1835 and 1836 and was made its president; Acting Governor of Mississippi in 1835 and 1836; judge of the high court of errors and appeals in 1838; during the Mexican War was appointed a brigadier general of Volunteers July 1, 1846; commissioned a major general in the Regular Army April 14, 1847, and honorably discharged July 20, 1848; Governor of Mississippi in 1850 and 1851; elected as a Democrat to the Thirty-fourth and Thirty-fifth Congresses and served from March 4, 1855, until his death on his plantation, "Monmouth," near Natchez, Miss., July 17, 1858, presumably from the effects of National Hotel disease contracted in Washington, D.C., during the inauguration of President Buchanan; chairman, Committee on Military Affairs (Thirty-fourth and Thirty-fifth Congresses); interment in the Natchez City Cemetery.

View Record in the Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

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External Research Collections

Boston Public Library

Boston, MA
Papers: 1 letter.

Harvard University
Houghton Library

Cambridge, MA
Papers: 1833-1858. ca. 300 items. Chiefly correspondence, some newspapers, pamphlets, and related papers. Unpublished inventory in library.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: 1850, 1855. 2 items.

Louisiana State University
Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections

Baton Rouge, LA
Papers: 1821-1872. 3 feet. Personal and business papers and correspondence, including 2 pages of memoirs (1848, 1855). Finding aid in repository.

Mississippi Department of Archives and History

Jackson, MS
Papers: 1812-1860. 2,532 items, 4 volumes, and 1 reel of microfilm. In part transcripts and microcopy of originals in University of Virginia. Family, financial, and military papers and records, plantation account books, correspondence, and scrapbooks reflecting his public service and contemporary issues. Unpublished description in repository.
Papers: 1849-1851. In Governors' papers. Correspondence, resignations and commissions, penitentiary reports, and documents concerning commissioner of deeds.

New-York Historical Society

New York, NY
Papers: 3 letters (February 13, 1850; March 14 and October 10, 1854) and gubernatorial inaugural address (January 10, 1850). Finding aid in repository.

University of North Carolina
Southern Historical Collection

Chapel Hill, NC
Papers: In Quitman family papers, 1784-1940. 8 feet (4,000 items). Includes his journal and other papers. Unpublished description in library.

University of Texas at Austin
Center for American History

Austin, TX
Papers: 40 pages (1820's-1860's) in the Natchez Trace collection. Relating to legal and financial affairs.

University of the South Library

Sewanee, TN
Papers: In William Storrow Lovell papers, 1844-1953. ca. 1,000 items. Includes congressional speeches and a manuscript. Descriptive inventory in library.

University of Virginia Library

Charlottesville, VA
Papers: 1781-1867. 80 items.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

A Brief Sketch of the Life, Civil and Military, of John A. Quitman.... Washington: Ritchie and Heiss, printers, 1848.

Broussard, Ray. "Governor John A. Quitman and the Lopez Expeditionos of 1851-1852." Journal of Mississippi History 28 (May 1966): 103-20.

Claiborne, John Francis Hamtramck. Life and Correspondence of John A. Quitman, Major-General, U.S.A., and Governor of the State of Mississippi. New York: Harper and Bros., 1860.

Gonzales, John Edmond. "John Anthony Quitman in the United States House of Representatives 1855-1858." Southern Quarterly 4 (April 1966): 276-88.

May, Robert E. "John A. Quitman and His Slaves: Reconciling Slave Resistance with the Proslavery Defense." Journal of Southern History 46 (November 1980): 551-70.

------. John A. Quitman: Old South Crusader. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1985.

McLendon, James H. "John A. Quitman." Ph.D. diss., University of Texas, Austin, 1949.

------. "John A. Quitman in the Texas Revolution." Southwestern Historical Quarterly 52 (October 1948): 163-83.

Urban, C. Stanley. "The Abortive Quitman Filibustering Expedition, 1881-1885." Journal of Mississippi History 18 (July 1956): 175-96.

Walther, Eric H. "Honorable and Useful Ambition: John Anthony Quitman." C hapter 3 in The Fire-Eaters. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1992.

Quitman, John A. Remarks of Messrs. [Galusha A.] Grow, Quitman, and T[homas]. L[angrell]. Harris, on the Missouri Compromise. Washington: Printed at the Congressional Globe Office, 1856.

------. Speech of John A. Quitman, of Mississippi, on the subject of the Neutrality Laws: Delivered in Committee on the Whole House of the State of the Union, April 29, 1856. Washington: Printed at the Union Office, 1856.

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