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"M" is for Magrath, Andrew Gordon [1813-1893]

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South Carolina from A to Z: "M" is for Magrath, Andrew Gordon [1813-1893]. Jurist, governor.

"M" is for Magrath, Andrew Gordon [1813-1893]. Jurist, governor. After graduating from the South Carolina College, Magrath studied law at Harvard and with James L. Petigru. In 1856 his appointment as a federal district judge brought him national attention and controversy. In the cases surrounding two ships seized for being slave traders—the Echo and the Wanderer—Magrath declared that the federal statues on piracy did not apply to the slave trade. His decision was hailed in the South and condemned in the North. With Lincoln's election, he resigned from the bench and was a member of the Secession Convention. Appointed a Confederate district judge, he vigorously opposed the concentration of governmental power in Richmond. In December 1864, he became the last governor elected by the General Assembly. After the war Andrew Gordon Magrath was imprisoned at Fort Pulaski in Savannah.

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.