Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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MALLORY, Stephen Russell, statesman, born in Trinidad, Wisconsin, in 1818; died in Pensacola, Florida, 9 November, IS73. He was the second son of Charles Mallory, a civil engineer of Reading, Connecticut When he was about a year old his parents removed to Havana, and in 1820 they settled at Key West, Florida He was educated at Mobile and at Nazareth, Pennsylvania, and at the age of nineteen was appointed by President Jackson inspector of the customs at Key West. While filling this post he studied law with Judge William Marvin, of the United States district court at Key West, and was admitted to the bar about 1839. He soon attained a high reputation and enjoyed a large practice. He became judge for Monroe county, and judge of probate, and in 1845 was appointed collector of customs at Key West. During the Indian war in Florida he volunteered and served for several years in active operations against the Seminoles. In 1850 he was elected a delegate to the Nashville commercial convention, but declined. In 1851 he was elected to the United States senate for six years. His opponent, David L. Yulee, contested his seat, but it was unanimously awarded to Mr. Mallory. He was re-elected in 1857, and continued to represent his state until the secession of Florida in 1861, when he resigned and at once took an active part with the southern states. He had removed from Key West to Pensacola in 1858. During the greater part of his service in the United States senate he was chairman of the committee on naval affairs, and a member of the committee on claims. In 1858 President Buchanan tendered him the appointment of minister to Spain, which he declined. On the secession of Florida he was appointed chief justice of the admiralty court of the state, which office he also declined. Jefferson Davis was inaugurated president of the Confederate states on 18 February, 1861, and on the 21st he appointed Mr. Mallory secretary of the navy, which post he held during the war. He found himself at the head of a naval department on the eve of a great war, without a ship or any of the essentials of a navy. He had not only to organize and administer, but to build the ships and boats, provide as best he could their ordnance and machinery, and create a naval force in a country whose ports were rapidly blockaded and which possessed resources only in a crude state. The timber for his ships stood in the forest; the iron was in the mines, and there were neither furnaces nor workshops; the hemp for the ropes had to be sown, grown, and reaped, and then there were no rope-walks; he had no rolling-mill capable of turning out a 21/2-inch iron plate, nor a workshop able to complete a marine engine. Mr. Mallory left Richmond in company with Jefferson Davis on the abandonment of that city by the Confederate government in April, 1865. At Washington, Georgia, they separated, Mr. Mallory going to La Orange, Georgia, where his family were then living. On 20 May, 1865, he was arrested and was taken to Fort Lafayette, New York harbor, where he was confined ten months, and released on parole in March, 1866. He returned to Pensacola in July, 1866, still under parole, and resumed the practice of law, which he continued until his death.
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