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Post-bellum Mortality Among Confederates. 271
company, on the 2ist of July, memorable as the anniversary of the first battle of Manassas, and to-day we receive the afflictiye intel ligence that our comrade, Theodore D. Caswell, Lieutenant-Colonel of the Second Battalion, Georgia Sharpshooters, is lying dead in Asheville, North Carolina.
The strong hand of mortality has also been laid upon two noted Confederates. William Smith, a war-governor of Virginia and a Major-General in Confederate service, departed this life at his home in Warrenton, Virginia, on the i8th of May. at the advanced age of ninety years; and, on the i8th of July, Robert Mercer Taliaferro Hunter quietly ended his long and honorable earthly career.
Born in Essex county, Virginia, on the 2ist of April, 1809, Mr. Hunter acquired his collegiate education at the University of Vir- ginia. Having completed his professional preparation at the Win- chester Law School, he was called to the Bar in 1830. In early manhood his active interest in public affairs, an honorable ambition for preferment, and the exhibition of unusual abilities, were recog- nized and rewarded by an election to the Virginia House of Dele- gates, of which he remained a member for three years.
In 1837 he was advanced to a seat in Congress, which he filled for two consecutive terms. Returned to the National Assembly in 1847, he presided over the Twenty-Sixth Congress as Speaker of the House of Representatives. From his earliest participation in national affairs he manifested an intellectual superiority, an independence of thought and action, and broad views of measures and government which, maintained and heightened during subsequent years, secured for him an enviable reputation for integrity, political sagacity, and wise statesmanship. Possessing uncommon intellect, and exhibiting admirable traits of character, he was an earnest student, an engaging speaker, was gifted by nature with a noble presence, and was in every way a man of commanding influence. In 1847 he became a Senator of the United States, and continued to be a prominent member of that august body until, in 1861.. Virginia severed her connection with the Union.
When the State of Virginia passed her Ordinance of Secession and sanctioned a resolution adopting the constitution of the Provi- sional Government of the Confederate States of America, a delega- tion, consisting of Mr. Hunter, and the Honorable William C. Rives, John W. Brockenbrough, and W. R. Staples, was elected to repre- sent that State in the Provisional Congress at Montgomery. Upon the adjournment of that Congress to meet at Richmond, the desig-