GEORGE, James Zachariah (1826-1897)

GEORGE, JAMES ZACHARIAH, a Senator from Mississippi; born in Monroe County, Ga., October 20, 1826; moved to Mississippi as a child; attended the old field schools; joined the Mississippi Rifles in 1846 and served in Mexico until discharged on account of ill health; studied law; admitted to the bar in 1847 and commenced practice in Carrollton, Miss.; reporter of the Mississippi Supreme Court in 1854; member of the Mississippi secession convention and signed the ordinance of secession; served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, attaining the rank of brigadier general of State troops; resided in Jackson, Miss., 1872-1887, when he returned to Carrollton; appointed judge of the State supreme court in 1879 and was elected chief justice; elected as a Democrat to the United States Senate in 1880; reelected in 1886, and again in 1892, and served from March 4, 1881, until his death on August 14, 1897; chairman, Committee on Agriculture and Forestry (Fifty-third Congress); member of the constitutional convention of the State of Mississippi in 1890; died in Mississippi City, Miss.; interment in Evergreen Cemetery, Carrollton, Miss.

Mississippi Department of Archives and History
Jackson, MS
Papers: 1845-1895. 171 items and 4 volumes. Business and personal correspondence including some letters written from Washington, DC, to his wife, drafts of speeches, scrapbooks, photographs, and portraits.

  • Garner, James W. "Senatorial Career of J.Z. George.'' Publications of the Mississippi Historical Society 7 (1903): 245-62.
  • George, James Zachariah. The Political History of Slavery in the United States. With a Foreword and with a Sketch of the Author's Life, by William Hayne Leavell. 1915. Reprint. Detroit: Negro History Press, 1970.
  • Peck, Lucy B. "The Life and Times of James Z. George.'' Master's thesis, Mississippi State University, 1964.
  • Ringold, May Spencer. "Senator James Zachariah George of Mississippi: Bourbon or Liberal?'' Journal of Mississippi History 16 (July 1954): 164-82.
  • Smith, Timothy B. James Z. George: Mississippi's Great Commoner. Jackson: University of Mississippi Press, 2012.