Thomas Russell Bowden

Last updated

Thomas Russell Bowden (May 20, 1841 – July 6, 1893) served as Attorney General of the Restored government of Virginia from 1863 to 1865 and of Virginia from 1865 to 1869.

Bowden, the son of Lemuel J. Bowden, was born near Williamsburg, Virginia and attended the College of William and Mary. During the American Civil War he became a Republican. In May 1863 Bowden was the Unionist candidate for attorney general of the Restored government of Virginia and won election with 2,743 votes, thus becoming the youngest attorney general of Virginia up until that time at the age of twenty-two.

Bowden sought reelection in 1869 but was defeated by James Craig Taylor in the election held on July 6, 1869. Bowden resigned as attorney general effective August 1, 1869. Until Taylor took office on January 19, 1870, Charles Whittlesey was appointed in fill the vacancy. Not long after leaving office, Bowden moved to Washington, D.C., where he practiced law for more than twenty years. He was the author of Blunders in Educated Circles Corrected (1889). Bowden died in Washington, D.C., and was buried in Cedar Grove Cemetery in Williamsburg, Virginia.

Related Research Articles

Benjamin Stoddert Ewell

Benjamin Stoddert Ewell was a United States and Confederate army officer, civil engineer, and educator from James City County, Virginia. He graduated from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York in 1832 and served as an officer and educator.

Andrew Jackson Montague

Andrew Jackson Montague was a Virginia lawyer and American politician. He served as the 44th Governor of Virginia, from 1902 to 1906, and a Congressman from 1912 until his death in 1937. A Democrat, Montague is best remembered as the first Virginia governor since the American Civil War not to have served in the Confederate military. Initially a Progressive, Governor Montague expanded the state capitol building, supported public education and the Good Roads Movement and opposed the Martin Organization. However, later as U.S. Congressman, he became a Conservative Democrat and supporter of the Byrd Organization.

Attorney General of Virginia

The Attorney General of Virginia is an elected constitutional position that holds an executive office in the government of Virginia. Attorneys General are elected for a four-year term in the year following a presidential election. There are no term limits restricting the number of terms someone can serve as Attorney General.

Henry H. Wells

Henry Horatio Wells, a Michigan lawyer and Union Army officer in the American Civil War, succeeded Francis Harrison Pierpont as the appointed provisional governor of Virginia from 1868 to 1869 during Reconstruction. A Radical Republican labelled a carpetbagger, Wells was defeated for election in 1869 by Gilbert C. Walker, who also became his appointed successor. Wells then served as U.S. Attorney for Virginia and later for the District of Columbia.

David Gardiner Tyler

David Gardiner Tyler, was a U.S. Democratic Party politician and the ninth child and fourth son of John Tyler, the tenth President of the United States.

Lemuel J. Bowden

Lemuel Jackson Bowden was an American lawyer and politician from Williamsburg, Virginia.

James A. Walker

James Alexander Walker was a Virginia lawyer, politician, and Confederate general during the American Civil War, later serving as a United States Congressman for two terms. He earned the nickname "Stonewall Jim" for his days as commander of the famed Stonewall Brigade.

African American officeholders during and following the Reconstruction era

Scholars have identified more than 1,500 African American officeholders who served during the Reconstruction Era (1865–1877) after passage of the Reconstruction Acts in 1867 and 1868 as well as in the years after Reconstruction before white supremacy, disenfranchisement, and the Democratic Party fully reasserted control in Southern states. Historian Canter Brown, Jr. noted that in some states, such as Florida, the highest number of African Americans were elected or appointed to offices after 1877 and the end of Reconstruction. The following is a partial list some of the most notable of the officeholders pre–1900.

Aquilla Bolton Caldwell was West Virginia's First & Fifth Attorney General, serving between 1863–1864 and 1869–1870.

Leopold Copeland Parker Cowper served as (seventh) lieutenant governor of the Restored government of Virginia from November 1863 until June 1865 and then as the eighth Lieutenant Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia from June 1865 until September 1869 under Governors John Letcher, William Smith, Francis Harrison Pierpont and Henry H. Wells.

Restored Government of Virginia Unionist government of Virginia

The RestoredGovernment of Virginia was the Unionist government of Virginia during the American Civil War (1861–1865) in opposition to the government which had approved Virginia's seceding from the United States and joining the new Confederate States of America. Each government regarded the other as illegitimate; the Restored Government had de facto control of the state's northwest until, with its approval, the area became West Virginia in mid-1863. Since the Restored Government and West Virginia mutually recognized each other, the former government thereafter became in large part a government in exile. Until the end of hostilities, most of its de jure territory remained controlled by the secessionist state government, which never recognized either Unionist state government operating within its antebellum borders. Furthermore, since the Restored Government's claimed territory not under secessionist control only remained so by force of arms it was placed under Federal martial law, thus further limiting the authority of the Unionist civilian government.

Robert Murphy Mayo was a Virginia lawyer, Confederate officer and politician who served in the Virginia House of Delegates and briefly in the U.S. Representative as a member of the Readjuster Party.

William H. Forwood

William Henry Forwood was a surgeon from Brandywine Hundred, Delaware, who served in the Union Army during the American Civil War and eventually as Surgeon General of the United States Army from June 8, 1902 until September 7, 1902.

John Bramston (Australian politician)

Sir John Bramston,, was a politician in Queensland and a British colonial government administrator in Queensland and Hong Kong. He then served as Assistant Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies in London for 20 years.

James Sanders Wheat was the Attorney General of Virginia in Union held territory from 1861 to 1863.

Edwin Maxwell (attorney general) American lawyer, judge, and politician

Edwin Maxwell was an American lawyer, judge, and politician in the U.S. state of West Virginia. Maxwell served as Attorney General of West Virginia in 1866 and was an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of Appeals of West Virginia from 1867 until 1872. He was elected to the West Virginia Senate and the West Virginia House of Delegates.

Charles Whittlesey was an American lawyer and newspaper publisher who briefly served as the Attorney General of Virginia at the end of Congressional Reconstruction.

James Craig Taylor was a Virginia lawyer, newspaper publisher and politician who became the Attorney General of Virginia as Congressional Reconstruction ended. After serving in the Confederate States Army and the Virginia Senate (1863–1865), James C. Taylor won the first statewide postwar election on July 6, 1869, defeating Thomas R. Bowden who had won election four years earlier when many former Confederates were precluded from voting, or chose not to vote. Taylor later won election to the Virginia House of Delegates and served part-time for one term before losing to the man he had defeated.


Preceded by
James S. Wheat
Attorney General of the Restored Government of Virginia
1863 1865
Succeeded by
Preceded by
John Randolph Tucker
Attorney General of Virginia
1865 1869
Succeeded by
Charles Whittlesey