David S. Walker

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For other people named David Walker, see David Walker (disambiguation).
David Shelby Walker
Florida Governor David S. Walker.jpg
8th Governor of Florida
In office
January 18, 1866 – July 4, 1868
Lieutenant William W. J. Kelly
Preceded by William Marvin
Succeeded by Harrison Reed
Personal details
Born May 2, 1815
Died July 20, 1891 (aged 76)
Tallahassee, Florida
Political party Conservative [Democratic] Party
Spouse(s) Philoclea Alston
Elizabeth Duncan
Parents David Walker

David Shelby Walker (May 2, 1815 – July 20, 1891) was the eighth Governor of Florida from 1866 to 1868.

Walker was born near Russelville in Logan County, Kentucky. He attended private schools in Kentucky and Tennessee and studied law. He moved to Florida in 1837, settling in Leon County. His father was David Walker, a prominent early Kentucky politician who served in the US House of Representatives. David S. Walker was a cousin and close business and political confidante of Florida territorial governor Richard K. Call. He was also related to Florida Senator Wilkinson Call, who was Walker's law partner for several years in the 1850s and 1860s in Tallahassee.

Walker was elected to the first session of the Florida State Legislature in 1845, serving Wakula and Leon Counties as Senator. In 1848, he was elected by Leon County to the Florida House of Representatives. He served from 1849 to 1854 as the Register of Public Lands and was ex oficio State Superintendent of Public Instruction. He advocated and promoted interest in public schools. His efforts resulted in the creation of public schools in Tallahassee. He served as Mayor of Tallahassee. In 1860, he became a Florida Supreme Court Justice, but resigned to run to become Governor.

He had been a Whig and was a Constitutional Unionist and so had opposed Florida's secession. However, when the decision was passed to leave the Union, he supported his state. Walker won an election for Governor on November 29, 1865 unopposed with 100% of the vote,[1] was inaugurated on December 20, 1865 and took office January 18, 1866.[2] His term in office was devoted to restoring the state government while Florida was under military occupation during Reconstruction. After leaving the governor's office on July 4, 1868, he returned to practicing law. In 1878, he was appointed circuit court judge, a position he held until his death on July 20, 1891.

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Political offices
Preceded by
William Marvin
Governor of Florida
December 20, 1865 – July 4, 1868
Succeeded by
Harrison Reed