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HILLIARD, Henry Washington

1808–1892

Biography

HILLIARD, Henry Washington, a Representative from Alabama; born in Fayetteville, Cumberland County, N.C., on August 4, 1808; was graduated from South Carolina College (now the University of South Carolina) at Columbia in 1826; studied law; moved to Athens, Ga., where he was admitted to the bar in 1829; professor in the University of Alabama at Tuscaloosa from 1831 to 1834, when he resigned to practice law in Montgomery, Ala.; member of the State house of representatives 1836-1838; member of the Whig National Convention at Harrisburg, Pa., in 1839; Whig presidential elector in 1840; unsuccessful candidate for election to the Twenty-seventh Congress in 1840; Chargé d'Affaires to Belgium from May 12, 1842, to August 15, 1844; elected as a Whig to the Twenty-ninth, Thirtieth, and Thirty-first Congresses (March 4, 1845-March 3, 1851); was not a candidate for renomination in 1850; presidential elector on the National American ticket in 1856; during the Civil War served as brigadier general in the Confederate Army; moved to Augusta, Ga., in 1865 and resumed the practice of his profession; appointed by Jefferson Davis Confederate commissioner to Tennessee; unsuccessful Republican candidate for election in 1876 to the Forty-fifth Congress; resumed the practice of law in Augusta, Ga., moving later to Atlanta; Minister to Brazil 1877-1881; died in Atlanta, Ga., December 17, 1892; interment in Oakwood Cemetery, Montgomery, Ala.

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

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External Research Collections

Alabama Department of Archives and History

Montgomery, AL
Papers: In the Alabama Governor (1849-1853: Collier) administrative files, 1848-1853, 1 cubic foot. Other authors include Henry W. Hilliard. A container list is available in the repository.
Photographs: In the Confederate Officers photograph album, n.d., 0.66 cubic foot. Subjects include Henry W. Hilliard.
Papers: In the Pamphlets vertical file persons, [ca.1835]-1988, 2 cubic feet. Subjects include Henry W. Hilliard.
Papers: In the Edward Brett Randolph family papers, 1831-1915, 1.33 cubic feet. Subjects include Henry W. Hilliard. A container list is available in the repository and online.

Dartmouth College
Rauner Special Collections Library

Hanover, NH
Papers: 1852, 3 pages. A letter from Henry Washington Hilliard to Daniel Webster written on March 18, 1852. In the letter, Hilliard writes about the speech before the Historical Society of New York is the best specimen of Webster's written style and requests a position of Chargé d'Affaires to Switzerland for himself.

Duke University
Special Collections Department, William R. Perkins Library

Durham, NC
Papers: 1843-1886, 5 items. The papers of Henry Washington Hilliard contain miscellaneous correspondence, including a letter, 1860, to Harper and Brothers expressing optimism about Alabama's chances of remaining in the Union; a letter, 1868, to Chief Justice Salmon P. Chase referring to hearings on the proposed trial of Jefferson Davis and mentioning the visit of Kate Chase Sprague and William Sprague, former governor of Rhode Island to Augusta, Ga.; and responses to autograph collectors. A finding aid is available in the repository.
Papers: In the Nathaniel Niles papers, 1846-1860, 8 items. The papers contain letters of Henry Washington Hilliard, noted orator and congressman from Alabama, to Nathaniel Niles concerning Henry Hilliard's re-election to Congress in 1846 and aspirations for the speakership of the House of Representatives; politics in Alabama; Henry Hilliard's strong Union sentiments; the possibility of diplomatic posts for Henry Hilliard, 1851, and Nathaniel Niles, 1857; and the difficulties of maintaining a Unionist position in Alabama in 1860.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: In the Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection, 1850, 1 item. A letter of Henry W. Hilliard, 1850.

Louisiana State University
Special Collections

Baton Rouge, LA
Papers: 1868, 2 items. A letter from Henry Hilliard to Salmon P. Chase written on November 27, 1868. In the letter, Hilliard writes concerning correspondence from Chase published in the New York Times and expressing support for the administration of Ulysses S. Grant. Biographical information about Hilliard is also included.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Durham, David I. "Henry Washington Hilliard: 'A Story of Plebeians and Patricians.'" Ph.D. diss., University of Alabama, 2005.

___. A Southern Moderate in Radical Times: Henry Washington Hilliard, 1808-1892. Baton Rouge, LA: Louisiana State University Press, 2008.

Golden, James L. "Hilliard vs. Yancey: Prelude to the Civil War." Quarterly Journal of Speech 42 (February 1956): 35-44.

Hilliard, Henry Washington. De Vane: A story of plebeians and patricians. New York: Blelock, 1865.

___. Reply of Mr. Hilliard, of Alabama, to Mr. Stanly, of North Carolina. Washington: Printed at the Congressional Globe Office, 1850.

___. Speech of Mr. H. W. Hilliard, of Alabama, on the President's message, in relation to the government of the territory acquired from Mexico by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. Washington: Gideon & Co., printers, 1850.

___. Speech of Mr. Hilliard of Alabama, on the Oregon question, delivered in the House of Representatives of the United States, Jan 6, 1846. Washington: J. & G. S. Gideon, printers, 1846.

Jackson, Carlton. "Alabama's Hilliard: A Nationalistic Rebel of the Old South." Alabama Historical Quarterly 31 (Fall-Winter 1969): 183-205.

Mellen, George F. "Henry W. Hilliard and William L. Yancey." Sewanee Review 17 (January 1909): 32-50.

Shields, Johanna N. "An Antebellum Alabama Maverick: Henry Washington Hilliard, 1845-1851." Alabama Review 30 (July 1977): 191-212.

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