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“R” is for Read, Jacob (ca. 1752-1816)

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“R” is for Read, Jacob (ca. 1752-1816). Lawyer, U.S. senator. Although a member of the South Carolina Bar in 1773, Read studied law at Gray’s Inn in London to further his legal studies. He Was a captain in the Charleston Militia and captured in 1780. He was exiled to St. Augustine and imprisoned there until exchanged. He represented St. Philip’s and Michael’s in the S.C. House of Representatives. The legislature later elected him to Congress. He supported the new U.S. Constitution and voted for its ratification in the state’s ratification convention. Read was Speaker of the S.C. House when the General Assembly elected him to the U.S. Senate where he served one term. A Federalist with close ties to the mercantile community, Jacob Read cast the crucial vote necessary for ratification of the controversial Jay Treaty.

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Dr. Walter Edgar has two programs on South Carolina Public Radio: Walter Edgar's Journal, and South Carolina from A to Z. Dr. Edgar received his B.A. degree from Davidson College in 1965 and his Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina in 1969. After two years in the army (including a tour of duty in Vietnam), he returned to USC as a post-doctoral fellow of the National Archives, assigned to the Papers of Henry Laurens.