Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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CORLEY, Manuel Simeon, patriot, born in Lexington district, South Carolina, 10 February, 1823. He received an academic education, was apprenticed to a tailor in 1834, and began business for himself in 1838. In 1846 he began to write for the press, in advocacy of temperance and other reforms. He opposed the secession doctrine in 1851, for which he was denounced as an abolitionist and threatened with expulsion from the state. He defended himself in articles openly avowing his principles, which were only received by the newspapers at advertising rates. In 1852 he made a tour through the north, and wrote a series of letters directed against sectionalism to the "Southern Patriot." In 1855-'6 he edited the South Carolina "Temperance Standard." A patent for a new system of cutting clothing was issued to him in 1857. He was one of the few opponents of secession in South Carolina in 1860, was compelled to serve as a conscript in the Confederate army in 1863, and after his capture by the national troops at Petersburg, 2 April, 1865, joyfully took the oath of allegiance and returned to his home. He opposed the policy of Andrew Johnson and Governor Perry, advocated reconstruction in 1866, and was a delegate to the constitutional convention of 1867, in which he introduced the resolutions to remove the provisional government, opposed the repudiation of the slave debts, and advocated the present homestead law of the state. He was elected to congress in 1868, and, after the removal of his technical disabilities, took his seat on 25 July, 1868, and served till 3 March, 1869. He introduced joint resolutions for the better protection of loyal men in the reconstructed states and the exclusion of secessionist textbooks from the schools, and earnestly supported the 15th amendment. In 1869 he was appointed a special agent of the United States treasury department. He was commissioner of the State board of agricultural statistics in 1870, treasurer of Lexington county in 1874, and a nominee of the independent party for state comptroller in 1882.
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