William Henry Harrison COWLES, Congress, NC (1840-1901)


COWLES, William Henry Harrison, (uncle of Charles Holden Cowles), a Representative from North Carolina; born in Hamptonville, Yadkin County, N.C., April 22, 1840; attended the common schools and academies of his native county; entered the Confederate service as a private in Company A, First North Carolina Cavalry, and served from the spring of 1861 to the close of the war with the Army of Northern Virginia, holding successively the ranks of captain, major, and lieutenant colonel of his regiment; entered upon the study of law in Richmond Hill, Yadkin County, in 1866; obtained a county court license in January 1867 and a superior court license in January 1868; moved to Wilkesboro, Wilkes County, where he commenced the practice of law; reading clerk of the State senate of North Carolina 1872-1874; elected solicitor of the tenth judicial district in 1874 and served for four years; member of the Democratic State executive committee for eight years; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth and to the three succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1885-March 3, 1893); chairman, Committee on Expenditures in the Department of Justice (Fiftieth Congress), Committee on Mines and Mining (Fifty-second Congress); was not a candidate for renomination in 1892; engaged in agricultural pursuits and also interested in other business activities; died in Wilkesboro, N.C., December 30, 1901; interment in Presbyterian Cemetery.

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