William Pope Duval
|William Pope Duval|
|1st Territorial Governor of Florida|
April 17, 1822 – April 24, 1834
|Appointed by||James Monroe
John Quincy Adams
|Preceded by||Andrew Jackson
as Military Governor
|Succeeded by||John Eaton|
September 4, 1784|
(near present-day Richmond, Virginia)
|Died||March 19, 1854
|Spouse(s)||Nancy Hynes Duval|
William Pope Duval (September 4, 1784 – March 19, 1854) was the first civilian governor of Florida Territory, succeeding Andrew Jackson who had been military governor. In his twelve-year governorship, from 1822 to 1834, he divided Florida into four territories, established the local court system, and chose Tallahassee as the territory’s capital because of its central location. Duval County, where Jacksonville is located, and Duval Street in Key West are named for him.
William Duval was born to Major William Duval and Ann Pope in "Mansfield," Henrico County, Virginia (near present-day Richmond). At the age of 14, he left home and struck out on his own, settling in Bardstown, Kentucky. He began to study law and was admitted to the bar at 19 in 1804. On October 3, 1804, he married Nancy Hynes in Bardstown
During an outbreak of Indian hostilities in 1812, Duval was given command of a company of mounted Volunteers. This service and his law experience helped to win him election to the 13th Congress of the United States in 1812. He served as a representative from the Democratic-Republican Party in the new Kentucky's 10th congressional district until 1815 when he did not seek re-election. He returned to Kentucky and continued to practice law.
In 1821, Florida became a U.S. Territory, Duval was named United States Judge for the East Florida district on May 18, 1821. On April 17, 1822, President James Monroe appointed him as the first non-military governor of the territory, succeeding General Andrew Jackson. He was reappointed by President John Quincy Adams and President Andrew Jackson. During his twelve-year administration, he named the small Indian village of Tallahassee as the site of the territory's capital, on account of its central location. He was also known for his peaceful dealings with the Native Americans living in the state. He signed the first act of legislation in Florida as a U.S. Territory, dividing it into four territories and establishing the local court system.
Duval continued to live in Florida for a number of years, practicing law. He moved to Texas in 1848. He and his wife had eight children, many of whom began families in Texas, most notably Burr Harrison Duval. He died in Washington, D.C. He is interred at the Congressional Cemetery.
- Duval County, Florida is named for him.
- Duval County, Texas is named for his son, Capt. Burr Harrison Duval
- Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. Govt. Print. Off. p. 111.
- Official Governor's portrait and biography from the State of Florida
- Territorial Governor Duval's Message to Legislative Council, 1822 From the State Library and Archives of Florida.
- Allen, William B. (1872). A History of Kentucky: Embracing Gleanings, Reminiscences, Antiquities, Natural Curiosities, Statistics, and Biographical Sketches of Pioneers, Soldiers, Jurists, Lawyers, Statesmen, Divines, Mechanics, Farmers, Merchants, and Other Leading Men, of All Occupations and Pursuits. Bradley & Gilbert. pp. 272–273. Retrieved 2008-11-10.
- William Pope Duval at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- William Pope Duval at Find a Grave
as Military Governor of Florida
|Territorial Governor of Florida