Henry W. Barry

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Henry W. Barry
Gen. Henry W. Barry, Miss. 41st Congress - NARA - 527003.jpg
Congressman Henry W. Barry
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Mississippi's 3rd district
In office
February 23, 1870–March 4, 1875
Preceded by William Barksdale
Succeeded by Hernando Money
Personal details
Born April 1840 (1840-04)
Schoharie County, New York, United States
Died June 7, 1875(1875-06-07) (aged 35)
Washington, D.C.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Kate Thyson Barry
Profession Soldier, Lawyer, Politician
Military service
Allegiance  United States of America
Service/branch  United States Army
Years of service 1861–66
Rank Union army brig gen rank insignia.jpg Brevet Brigadier General
Union army col rank insignia.jpg Colonel
Unit 10th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry
Commands 8th US Colored Heavy Artillery
Battles/wars American Civil War

Henry W. Barry (April 1840 – June 7, 1875) was a Union army officer during the American Civil War who later served as U.S. Representative from Mississippi.

Early life and Civil War[edit]

Born in Schoharie County, New York, Barry was a self-educated man. Moving to Kentucky when he was eighteen he taught at Locust Grove Academy. When the Civil War started he enlisted in the Union Army as a private and was commissioned as First Lieutenant of Company H in the 10th Kentucky Volunteer Infantry on November 21, 1861. He resigned from his post on November 17, 1862, and assisted in the recruitment of colored troops in Kentucky.[1] He was commissioned Colonel of the 1st Regiment Kentucky Heavy Artillery, African Descent on April 28, 1864, when it was organized at Paducah.[1] The regiment was renamed to 8th United States Colored Heavy Artillery around the time. Stationed in Kentucky he and his men took part in the skirmishes of Haddix's Ferry and Smithland. He was named Brevet Brigadier General in the wave of mass promotions of March 13, 1865. In April 1865 the regiment was transferred to Texas for occupational duty. There the regiment was mustered out in February 1866, and Barry followed on May 11.[1]

Later life and politics[edit]

After the war he graduated from the law department of Columbian College in Washington, D.C. (now George Washington University) in 1867. Being admitted to the bar the same year he commenced practice in Columbus, Mississippi. There he entered politics and served as delegate to the State constitutional convention in 1867 and as member of the State senate in 1868. Upon the readmission of the State of Mississippi in 1870 he was elected as Republican representative of Mississippi's 3rd congressional district, succeeding confederate General William Barksdale. He served for the Forty-first, Forty-second, and Forty-third Congresses from February 23, 1870, to March 4, 1875 and was chairman of the Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department (Forty-second and Forty-third Congresses). In 1874 Barry nominated Henry E. Baker to the United States Naval Academy, who became the nations third colored naval cadet.[2]

Barry died in Washington, D.C., and was interred in Oak Hill Cemetery June 7, 1875.[3] He was outlived by his wife Kate Thyson Barry (1850-1907) and his son Frank Thyson "Francis" Barry (1874-1889).[4]


  1. ^ a b c Heitman, Francis B.; Historical Register and Dictionary of the United States Army, from Its Organization, September 29, 1789, to March 2, 1903; Editora Gente Liv e Edit Ltd; 1994; p. 195
  2. ^ Schneller, R.J.; Breaking the Color Barrier: The U.S. Naval Academy's First Black Midshipmen and the Struggle for Racial Equality; NYU Press; 2005; p. 34
  3. ^ Dodge 2005, p. 616.
  4. ^ "Henry W. Barry". Find a Grave. Retrieved 2014-02-07. 



External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
William Barksdale
(Prior to Civil War)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Mississippi's 3rd congressional district

February 23, 1870 – March 4, 1875
Succeeded by
Hernando Money