John McQueen

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John McQueen
Member of the Confederate States House of Representatives from South Carolina's 1st district
In office
February 18, 1862 – February 18, 1864
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded byJames Hervey Witherspoon, Jr.
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 1st district
In office
March 4, 1853 – December 21, 1860
Preceded byDaniel Wallace
Succeeded byBenjamin F. Whittemore (1868)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th district
In office
February 12, 1849 – March 3, 1853
Preceded byAlexander D. Sims
Succeeded byPreston S. Brooks
Personal details
Born(1804-02-09)February 9, 1804
Robeson County, North Carolina, U.S.
DiedAugust 30, 1867(1867-08-30) (aged 63)
Society Hill, South Carolina, U.S.
Resting placeSociety Hill, South Carolina, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Sarah Elizabeth Pickens
(m. 1851)
ProfessionLawyer, politician
Military service
Allegiance United States of America
Branch/serviceNorth Carolinian militia
Years of service1833–1837

John McQueen (February 9, 1804 – August 30, 1867) was an American lawyer and politician. He was U.S. Representative from South Carolina and a member of the Confederate States Congress during the American Civil War.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Queensdale in Robeson County, North Carolina, near the town of Maxton, North Carolina, McQueen completed preparatory studies under private tutors and was graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He subsequently studied law. He was admitted to the bar in 1828 and commenced practice in Bennettsville, South Carolina. McQueen served in the State militia in 1833–37. He was an unsuccessful candidate for election in 1844 to the 29th United States Congress.


McQueen was elected as a Democrat to the 30th and 31st Congresses to fill the vacancies caused by the death of Alexander D. Sims. He was reelected to the 32nd and to the four succeeding Congresses, and served from February 12, 1849, until his retirement on December 21, 1860.

American Civil War[edit]

An ardent supporter of slavery and southern states' rights, McQueen was elected as a representative from South Carolina in the First Confederate Congress after the outbreak of the American Civil War. Regarding the Confederacy's cause for starting the war, McQueen stated in a December 1860 letter to civic leaders in Richmond, Virginia:

I have never doubted what Virginia would do when the alternatives present themselves to her intelligent and gallant people, to choose between an association with her sisters and the dominion of a people, who have chosen their leader upon the single idea that the African is equal to the Anglo-Saxon, and with the purpose of placing our slaves on equality with ourselves and our friends of every condition! and if we of South Carolina have aided in your deliverance from tyranny and degradation, as you suppose, it will only the more assure us that we have performed our duty to ourselves and our sisters in taking the first decided step to preserve an inheritance left us by an ancestry whose spirit would forbid its being tarnished by assassins. We, of South Carolina, hope soon to greet you in a Southern Confederacy, where white men shall rule our destinies, and from which we may transmit to our posterity the rights, privileges and honor left us by our ancestors.[1][2]

Later life and death[edit]

He died at Society Hill, South Carolina, on August 30, 1867, and was interred in the Episcopal Cemetery in Society Hill, South Carolina.

Personal life[edit]

He married Sarah Elizabeth Pickens (September 29, 1831 – September 22, 1909 at Asheville, North Carolina), granddaughter of American Revolutionary War General Andrew Pickens on December 31, 1851 in Cahaba, Alabama.


  1. ^ Rhea, Gordon (January 25, 2011). "Why Non-Slaveholding Southerners Fought". Civil War Trust. Civil War Trust. Archived from the original on March 21, 2011. Retrieved March 21, 2011.
  2. ^ McQueen, John (December 24, 1860). "Correspondence to T. T. Cropper and J. R. Crenshaw". Washington, D.C. Archived from the original on March 25, 2015. Retrieved March 25, 2015.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Confederate States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Position established
Member of the Confederate House of Representatives from South Carolina's 1st Congressional District
Succeeded by
James Hervey Witherspoon, Jr.
U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Daniel Wallace
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 1st congressional district

Succeeded by
Benjamin F. Whittemore (1868)
Preceded by
Alexander D. Sims
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th congressional district

Succeeded by
Preston S. Brooks