SMALLS, Robert, a Representative from South Carolina; born in Beaufort, S.C., April 5, 1839; moved to Charleston, S.C., in 1851; appointed pilot in the United States Navy and served throughout the Civil War; member of the State constitutional convention in 1868; served in the State house of representatives, 1868-1870; member of the State senate 1870-1874; delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1872 and 1876; elected as a Republican to the Forty-fourth and Forty-fifth Congresses (March 4, 1875-March 3, 1879); unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1878 to the Forty-sixth Congress; successfully contested the election of George D. Tillman to the Forty-seventh Congress and served from July 19, 1882, to March 3, 1883; unsuccessful candidate for reelection in 1882; elected to the Forty-eighth Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Edmund W.M. Mackey; reelected to the Forty-ninth Congress and served from March 18, 1884, to March 3, 1887; unsuccessful for reelection in 1886 to the Fiftieth Congress; collector of the port of Beaufort, S.C., 1897-1913; died in Beaufort, S.C., February 22, 1915; interment in the Tabernacle Baptist Church Cemetery.
BibliographyMiller, Edward A., Jr. Gullah Statesman: Robert Smalls from Slavery to Congress, 1839-1915. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1995.
Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1771-Present