39 Facts About Howell Cobb


Howell Cobb was an American and later Confederate political figure.


Howell Cobb served as the 40th governor of Georgia and as a secretary of the treasury under President James Buchanan.


Howell Cobb is probably best known as one of the founders of the Confederacy, having served as the President of the Provisional Congress of the Confederate States where delegates of the Southern slave states declared that they had seceded from the United States and created the Confederate States of America.


Howell Cobb was raised in Athens and attended the University of Georgia, where he was a member of the Phi Kappa Literary Society.


Howell Cobb was admitted to the bar in 1836 and became solicitor general of the western judicial circuit of Georgia.


Howell Cobb was a presidential elector in the 1836 presidential election.


Howell Cobb married Mary Ann Lamar on May 26,1835.


Howell Cobb was a daughter of Colonel Zachariah Lamar, of Milledgeville, from a prominent family with broad connections in the South.


Howell Cobb was elected as Democrat to the 28th, 29th, 30th and 31st Congresses.


Howell Cobb was chairman of the US House Committee on Mileage during the 28th Congress, and Speaker of the United States House of Representatives during the 31st Congress.


Howell Cobb was an ardent advocate of extending slavery into the territories, but when the Compromise of 1850 had been agreed upon, he became its staunch supporter as a Union Democrat.


Howell Cobb joined Georgia Whigs Alexander Stephens and Robert Toombs in a statewide campaign to elect delegates to a state convention that overwhelmingly affirmed, in the Georgia Platform, that the state accepted the Compromise as the final resolution to the outstanding slavery issues.


On that issue, Howell Cobb was elected governor of Georgia by a large majority.


In 1851, Howell Cobb left the House to serve as the Governor of Georgia, holding that post until 1853.


Howell Cobb published A Scriptural Examination of the Institution of Slavery in the United States: With its Objects and Purposes in 1856.


Howell Cobb was elected to the 34th Congress before being appointed as Secretary of the Treasury in Buchanan's Cabinet.


Howell Cobb served for three years, resigning in December 1860.


At one time, Howell Cobb was Buchanan's choice for his successor.


In 1860, Howell Cobb ceased to be a Unionist, and became a leader of the secession movement.


Howell Cobb was president of a convention of the seceded states that assembled in Montgomery, Alabama, on February 4,1861.


Howell Cobb served as president of several sessions of the Confederate Provisional Congress, before resigning to join the military when war erupted.


Howell Cobb joined the Confederate army and was commissioned as colonel of the 16th Georgia Infantry.


Howell Cobb was appointed a brigadier general on February 13,1862, and assigned command of a brigade in what became the Army of Northern Virginia.


Howell Cobb saw combat during the Peninsula Campaign and the Seven Days Battles.


Howell Cobb's brigade played a key role in the fighting during the Battle of South Mountain, especially at Crampton's Gap, where it arrived at a critical time to delay a Union advance through the gap, but at a bloody cost.


Howell Cobb's men fought at the subsequent Battle of Antietam.


In October 1862, Howell Cobb was detached from the Army of Northern Virginia and sent to the District of Middle Florida.


Howell Cobb was promoted to major general on September 9,1863, and placed in command of the District of Georgia and Florida.


Howell Cobb suggested the construction of a prisoner-of-war camp in southern Georgia, a location thought to be safe from Union incursions.


When William T Sherman's armies entered Georgia during the 1864 Atlanta Campaign and subsequent March to the Sea, Cobb commanded the Georgia Reserve Corps as a general.


Howell Cobb led the hopeless Confederate resistance in the Battle of Columbus, Georgia on Easter Sunday, April 16,1865.


Howell Cobb surrendered to the US at Macon, Georgia on April 20,1865.


That autumn, Howell Cobb vacationed in New York City, and died of a heart attack there.


Howell Cobb's body was returned to Athens, Georgia, for burial in Oconee Hill Cemetery.


The Howell Cobb family included many prominent Georgians from both before and after the Civil War era.


Cobb's uncle and namesake, Howell Cobb, had been a US Congressman from 1807 to 1812, and then served as an officer in the War of 1812.


Howell Cobb's younger brother, Thomas Reade Rootes Howell Cobb, was a politician and soldier and was killed in the Civil War.


Thomas Willis Howell Cobb, a member of the United States Congress and namesake of Georgia's Howell Cobb County, was a cousin.


Howell Cobb's niece Mildred Lewis "Miss Millie" Rutherford was a prominent educator, white supremacy advocate, and leader in the United Daughters of the Confederacy.