BRECKINRIDGE, William Campbell Preston, (1837 - 1904)

Collection of the U.S. House of Representatives
About this object

BRECKINRIDGE, William Campbell Preston, (grandson of John Breckinridge, uncle of Levin Irving Handy, and great-uncle of John Bayne Breckinridge), a Representative from Kentucky; born in Baltimore, Md., August 28, 1837; attended the common schools, Jefferson College, Chambersburg, Pa., and Pisgah Academy, Woodford County, Ky.; was graduated from Centre College, Danville, Ky., in 1855 and from the law department of the University of Louisville in 1857; was admitted to the bar in 1857 and commenced practice in Lexington, Ky.; entered the Confederate Army in 1861 as captain and was subsequently promoted to the rank of colonel in the Ninth Kentucky Cavalry; was in command of the Kentucky cavalry designated to act as bodyguard for President Jefferson Davis and the members of his cabinet at the close of the Civil War; returned to Lexington, Ky., and was attorney for Fayette County; edited the Lexington (Ky.) Observer and Reporter 1866-1868; professor of equity and jurisprudence in the University of Kentucky at Lexington; delegate to the Democratic National Conventions in 1876 and 1888; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth and to the four succeeding Congresses (March 4, 1885-March 3, 1895); unsuccessful candidate for election in 1896 to the Fifty-fifth Congress; resumed the practice of law and also edited the Lexington Herald; died in Lexington, Ky., November 18, 1904; interment in Lexington Cemetery.


Davis, William C. Breckinridge: Statesman, Soldier, Symbol. 1974. Reprint, Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 1992.