BRANCH, Lawrence O’Bryan, Congress, NC (1820-1862)


BRANCH, Lawrence O’Bryan, (father of William Augustus Blount Branch and nephew of John Branch), a Representative from North Carolina; born in Enfield, Halifax County, N.C., November 28, 1820; pursued a preparatory course under a private teacher in Washington, D.C., and at the Bingham Military Academy in North Carolina; attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for a short time and was graduated from Princeton College in 1838; studied law at Nashville, Tenn., and owned and edited a newspaper there; moved to Tallahassee, Fla., in 1840; was admitted to the bar in Florida in 1840 by a special act of the legislature and commenced practice in Tallahassee; fought in the Seminole War in 1841; moved to Raleigh, N.C., in 1852 and continued the practice of law; president of the Raleigh & Gaston Railroad Co.; elected as a Democrat to the Thirty-fourth, Thirty-fifth, and Thirty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1855-March 3, 1861); was not a candidate for renomination in 1860; appointed Secretary of the Treasury by President Buchanan December 2, 1860, but declined; entered the Confederate Army in May 1861 and was appointed brigadier general the same year; senior brigadier general in A.P. Hill’s division, Stonewall Jackson’s corps; killed in the Battle of Antietam, Sharpsburg, Md., while in command of the Fourth Brigade, North Carolina Troops, September 17, 1862; interment in Old City Cemetery, Raleigh, N.C.

Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1771-Present