Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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BADGER, George Edmund, statesman, born in Newbern, North Carolina, 13 April 1795; died in Raleigh, North Carolina, 11 May 1866. He was graduated at Yale in 1813, and studied law in Raleigh. In 1816 he was elected to the state legislature, and devoted the next four years of his life to law and legislation. From 1820 to 1825 he was judge of the North Carolina superior court at Raleigh. In 1840 he was a prominent advocate of the election of General Harrison to the presidency, and in March 1841, was appointed secretary of the navy. On the death of President Harrison, and the separation of Mr. Tyler from the Whig party, Mr. Badger resigned, giving the veto of President Tyler on the second bank bill as his reason. The Whig s of North Carolina returned him at the first opportunity to the senate. He was elected to fill a vacancy in 1846, and in 1848 reelected for a full term. In 1853 President Fillmore nominated him as a judge of the United States Supreme Court, but the senate refused to confirm the nomination. At the expiration of his senatorial term he retired from public life and devoted himself wholly to his profession. In February 1861, when the proposition to hold a convention for the purpose of seceding from the union was submitted to the people of his state, he consented to serve as a union candidate if the convention should be called. The proposition was defeated by the people; but when, in May 1861, the convention was finally called, he served in it as a representative from Wake County He spoke ably in defense of the union, and after the ordinance of secession was passed was known as a member of the conservative party. Mr. Badger was a vigorous speaker, but wrote little. He excelled in debate and was a man of profound research.
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