William Lowndes (congressman)

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William Jones Lowndes
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 2nd district
In office
March 4, 1813 – May 8, 1822
Preceded by William Butler
Succeeded by James Hamilton, Jr.
Chairman of the House Committee on Ways and Means
In office
Preceded by John W. Eppes
Succeeded by Samuel Smith
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th district
In office
March 4, 1811 – March 4, 1813
Preceded by John Taylor
Succeeded by John J. Chappell
Member of the South Carolina House of Representatives from St. Philip's and St. Michael's Parish
In office
November 26, 1804 – December 19, 1807
Personal details
Born February 11, 1782
Died October 27, 1822
Atlantic Ocean
Political party Democratic-Republican
Spouse(s) Elizabeth Pinckney
Profession planter, lawyer

William Jones Lowndes (February 11, 1782 to October 27, 1822) was an American lawyer, planter, and statesman from South Carolina. He represented the state in the U.S. Congress from 1811 to May 8, 1822, when he resigned.

He was the son of Rawlins Lowndes, an American Revolutionary War leader from South Carolina. He married Elizabeth Pinckney, daughter of Federalist leader Thomas Pinckney.


William J. Lowndes first served in the South Carolina House of Representatives from 1804 to 1808.

He was for four years Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee in the US House. He worked to achieve a compromise on sectional issues like tariffs and slavery. He also assisted in the creation of the second national bank. U.S. President James Madison offered Lowndes the post of Secretary of the Treasury in 1816, but Lowndes declined and Madison appointed William Harris Crawford.

The South Carolina state legislature nominated Lowndes in 1821 as a Presidential candidate for the election of 1824.

The Final Year[edit]

William Lowndes resigned from the U.S. Congress in May 1822 and died of illness on October 27, 1822, while en route to England. He was buried at sea.

Tributes And Legacy[edit]

In March-April of 1824, William Lowndes was honored with a single vote at the Democratic-Republican Party Caucus to be the party's candidate for the Office of U.S. Vice President for the upcoming 1824 U.S. Presidential Election. While it was not a vote for the Office of U.S. President as implied by the South Carolina State Legislature back in 1821, William Lowndes was still given this posthumous honor.

William Lowndes developed Lowndes' Apportionment Method.

Lowndesville, South Carolina; and Lowndes County in Mississippi, Georgia, and Alabama are named in his honor.[1]


  1. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 191. 

External links[edit]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
John Taylor
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 4th congressional district

Succeeded by
John J. Chappell
Preceded by
William Butler
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from South Carolina's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
James Hamilton, Jr.