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Francis Burton Craige

congressman , lawyer

Francis Burton Craige, American congressman. member North Carolina Ho; member United States Ho.


Craige, Francis Burton was born on March 13, 1811 in near Salisbury, Rowan County, North Carolina, United States.


Graduated from the University North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1829. Studied law.


He received a classical education in the schools of Salisbury before graduating in 1829 from the University of North Carolina. He also received his M. A. there in 1847. His marriage to Elizabeth Phifer Erwin produced three sons.

From 1829 to 1831, Craige edited the Western Carolinian in Salisbury. He studied law and was admitted to the Salisbury bar in 1832. A Democrat, he represented Salisbury in the state legislature from 1832 to 1834.

Active in local politics, he held no further public office until he was elected to the U.S. House in 1853. He served continuously in the House until his state seceded, at which time he resigned. As a delegate to the North Carolina secession convention in 1861, Craige, a secessionist, offered the Ordinance of Secession.

He also served in the provisional Confederate Congress at Richmond but retired because he thought himself too old. In Richmond, he served on special committees and was a supporter of the Davis administration. There is no evidence that he gave further service in the Confederate government.

Craige practiced law when the war ended. There is no record that he remained in public life.


"Peculiar institution" of slavery was not only expedient but also ordained by God and upheld in Holy Scripture.


Stands for preserving slavery, states' rights, and political liberty for whites. Every individual state is sovereign, even to the point of secession.


Member North Carolina Ho. Member United States Ho.