Gilbert Pillsbury

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Gilbert Pillsbury
42nd Mayor of Charleston
In office
May 1869 – 1871
Preceded by George Washington Clark
Succeeded by Johann Andreas Wagener
Personal details
Born February 23, 1813[1]
Henniker, New Hampshire
Died January 4, 1893(1893-01-04) (aged 79)
Boston, Massachusetts
Political party Democrat
Spouse(s) Ann Frances Ray
Alma mater Dartmouth (1841)
Profession teacher

Gilbert Pillsbury was the Reconstruction mayor of Charleston, South Carolina, serving one term from 1868 to 1871. He ran against William Patton[2] and Chancellor Lesesne.[3] Because of election challenges, he was installed as mayor only in May 1869.[4] He was renominated for a second term in 1871,[5] but he lost of Johann Andreas Wagener.[6]

Pillsbury graduated from Dartmouth College in 1841 and served in the Massachusetts State Senate in 1854.[7]

Pillsbury was an abolitionist who, during the Civil War, headed to the South as an agent of the Freedman's Bureau. He was originally stationed in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina before moving to Charleston, South Carolina with his wife in October 1865.[8] In Charleston, he worked to educate freed blacks and was placed in charge of abandoned property. In 1870, Pillsbury lived at 9 George St. (today a parking lot across from the Spoleto Festival USA Headquarters), and from 1872 to his death on January 4, 1893, he lived in Massachusetts.[9]


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ "The Mayoralty". The Petersburg Index. Petersburg, Virginia. May 21, 1868. 
  3. ^ "Municipal Election in Charleston, S.C.". Daily Eastern Argus. Portland, Maine. November 11, 1868. p. 2. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  4. ^ "State Items". The New Hampshire Patriot. May 19, 1869. p. 2. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  5. ^ "Political". New York Evening Post. July 25, 1871. p. 2. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  6. ^ "A Radical Defeat". Patriot. Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. August 5, 1871. p. 1. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  7. ^ "The Mayor of Charleston". The New Hampshire Patriot. November 18, 1868. p. 2. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
  8. ^ "Personal". South Carolina Leader. Charleston, South Carolina. October 21, 1865. p. 2. 
  9. ^ "New York Times". Gilbert Pillsbury (obituary). January 5, 1893. Retrieved January 19, 2014. 
Preceded by
George Washington Clark
Mayor of Charleston, South Carolina
Succeeded by
Johann Andreas Wagener