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"R’ is for Richardson, John Peter (1801-1864)

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“R’ is for Richardson, John Peter (1801-1864). Congressman, governor. A native of Sumter District, Richardson served in the S.C. House of Representatives (1825-1833). A Unionist, he opposed the nullification movement in South Carolina—and, as a delegate to the Nullification Convention, voted against the ordinance declaring the federal tariffs null and void in the state. Richardson served one term in the S.C. Senate before being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives (1836-1839). Returning to South Carolina he was elected governor—in an effort to reconcile Unionists and nullifiers in the state. After Richardson left office in 1842, his Unionist sympathies gradually eroded as he observed the growing abolitionist movement in the North. John Peter Richardson represented Clarendon District in the Secession Convention of 1860 where he voted for and signed the Ordinance of Secession.

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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.