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ORR, James Lawrence

ORR, James Lawrence
Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object


ORR, James Lawrence, a Representative from South Carolina; born in Craytonville, Anderson County, S.C., May 12, 1822; attended the public schools, and was graduated from the University of Virginia at Charlottesville in 1842; studied law; was admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Anderson, S.C., in 1843; engaged in newspaper work; member of the State house of representatives 1844-1847; elected as a Democrat to the Thirty-first and to the four succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1849-March 3, 1859); chairman, Committee on Indian Affairs (Thirty-third Congress); Speaker of the House of Representatives (Thirty-fifth Congress); was not a candidate for renomination in 1858; resumed the practice of law at Craytonville; member of the southern rights convention held in Charleston, S.C., in 1851; delegate to the Democratic National Convention at Charleston in 1860; member of the secession convention in 1860; one of three commissioners sent to Washington, D.C., to treat with the Federal Government for the surrender of the forts in Charleston Harbor; Member of the Confederate Senate in 1861; served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War; special commissioner sent to President Johnson to negotiate the establishment of provisional government for the State of South Carolina in 1865; member of the State constitutional convention in 1865; elected Governor of South Carolina as a Republican in 1866; president of the State convention at Columbia in July 1866; delegate to the Union National Convention at Philadelphia in August 1866; judge of the eighth judicial circuit 1868-1870; member of the Republican State convention in August 1872; delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1872; appointed by President Grant as Minister to Russia in December 1872; died in St. Petersburg, Russia, May 5, 1873; interment in the Presbyterian Cemetery, Anderson, S.C.

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

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External Research Collections

Boston Public Library

Boston, MA
Papers: 2 items.

Duke University Library

Durham, NC
Papers: Quantity unknown.

Evansville Museum of Arts and Science

Evansville, IN
Papers: Quantity unknown.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division

Washington, DC
Papers: 1858. 1 letter.

New-York Historical Society

New York, NY
Papers: August 13, 1858; October 26, 1861. 2 letters. Finding aid in repository.

South Carolina Department of Archives

Columbia, SC
Papers: 1865-1868. 8 cubic feet. Gubernatorial papers.

University of North Carolina
Southern Historical Collection

Chapel Hill, NC
Papers: 350 items and 2 volumes in Orr and Patterson family papers, 1779-1915. 3 feet including 8 volumes. Includes his political correspondence and pre-Civil War congressional mail. Unpublished description in library.

University of South Carolina
South Caroliniana Library

Columbia, SC
Papers: 1850-1868. 25 items and 1 volume. Personal and congressional papers and correspondence and photographs. Finding aid in repository.
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Bibliography / Further Reading

Baylen, Joseph O., ed. "A Letter of James L. Orr, Minister to Russia, 1873." South Carolina Historical Magazine 61 (October 1960): 225-31.

Breese, Donald H. "James L. Orr, Calhoun, and the Cooperationist Tradition in South Carolina." South Carolina Historical Magazine 80 (October 1979): 273-85.

Foran, William A. "Attempted Conversion of James L. Orr." Journal of Negro History 39 (April 1954): 137-9.

Leemhuis, Roger P. James L. Orr and the Sectional Conflict. Washington: University Press of America, 1979.

Orr, James Lawrence. An address delivered before the Philosophian and Adelphian societies of the Furman University. Greenville, S.C.: Printed by G. E. Elford & co., 1855.

------. The Cincinnati Convention. Washington: Printed at H. Polkinhorn's, 1855.

------. The slavery agitation. Speech of Hon. J. L. Orr, of South Carolina, in the House of Representatives, May 8, 1850, in Committee of the Whole on the State of the Union, on the President's message transmitting the constitution of California. [Washington: Printed at the Congressional globe office, 1850].

------. Speech of Hon. J. L. Orr, of South Carolina, on the bill granting public lands to Missouri to aid in constructing railroads. Delivered in the House of Representatives, February 24, 1852. Washington: Printed at the Congressional globe office, 1852.

------. Speech of the Hon. James L. Orr, of South Carolina, on the slavery question. Delivered in the House of Representatives, May 8, 1850. Washington: Printed by J. T. Towers, 1850.

Weller, John B. Speeches of Messrs. Weller, Orr, Lane, and Cobb, delivered in Phoenix and Depot hall, Concord, N. H., at a mass meeting of the Democratic party of Merrimac County. [Concord?: N.p., 1856?]

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