Wilson Lumpkin, Governor, U.S. Senator

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About Wilson Lumpkin, Governor, U.S. Senator


Wilson Lumpkin (January 14, 1783 – December 28, 1870) was a governor of Georgia, and a United States Representative and Senator.

Born near Dan River, Virginia, he moved in 1784 to Oglethorpe County, Georgia with his parents, who settled near Point Peter and subsequently at Lexington, Georgia. He attended the common schools, and taught school and farmed; he studied law, and was admitted to the bar and commenced practice in Athens, Georgia.

Lumpkin was a member of the Georgia House of Representatives from 1804 to 1812, and was elected as a Representative to the Fourteenth United States Congress, serving from March 4, 1815 to March 3, 1817. He was an unsuccessful candidate for reelection, and was the State Indian Commissioner. He was elected to the Twentieth, Twenty-first, and Twenty-second Congresses and served from March 4, 1827, until his resignation in 1831 before the convening of the Twenty-second Congress to run for the governorship; he was also commissioner on the Georgia–Florida boundary line commission, and was Governor of Georgia from 1831 to 1835. In 1835, he was appointed commissioner under the Cherokee treaty in 1835. He was elected to the U.S. Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of John P. King and served from November 22, 1837, to March 3, 1841; while in the Senate, he was chairman of the Committee on Manufactures (Twenty-sixth Congress). Lumpkin was a member of the State board of public works, and died in Athens in 1870; interment was in Oconee Hill Cemetery.

Lumpkin's grandson, Middleton P. Barrow, also served in the U.S. Senate. Lumpkin's brother Joseph Henry Lumpkin was the first chief justice of the Georgia supreme court. Their nephew John Henry Lumpkin was a U.S. Representative from Georgia. The townspeople of Terminus (current-day Atlanta) voted to rename their city "Lumpkin" after Wilson Lumpkin. He instead asked for his daughter Martha Lumpkin Compton to be the honoree of Atlanta's first true name, "Marthasville"; the story that "Atlanta" derives from a nickname "Atalanta" for her is not supported by the historical evidence. However, Lumpkin County, Georgia is named for him.

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Wilson Lumpkin, Governor, U.S. Senator's Timeline

January 14, 1783
Pittsylvania Co., VA
February 28, 1803
Age 20
Oglethorpe County, Georgia
December 28, 1805
Age 22
April 27, 1808
Age 25
May 22, 1814
Age 31
August 10, 1817
Age 34
October 7, 1821
Age 38
December 2, 1824
Age 41