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History and GovernmentCongressional BiographiesNorth Carolina

Walter Leak STEELE

(1823-1891)

STEELE, Walter Leak, a Representative from North Carolina; born at Steeles Mills (later Littles Mills), near Rockingham, Richmond County, N.C., April 18, 1823; attended the common schools, Randolph-Macon College, Lynchburg, Va., and Wake Forest (N.C.) College; was graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1844; member of the State house of commons in 1846, 1848, 1850, and 1854; trustee of the University of North Carolina from 1852 until his death; served in the State senate in 1852 and 1858; delegate to the Democratic National Conventions at Charleston and Baltimore in 1860; secretary of the State convention in 1861 which passed the ordinance of secession; studied law; was admitted to the bar in 1865 and commenced practice in Rockingham, N.C.; elected as a Democrat to the Forty-fifth and Forty-sixth Congresses (March 4, 1877-March 3, 1881); declined to be a candidate for renomination in 1880 to the Forty-seventh Congress; engaged in cotton manufacturing and banking; died in Baltimore, Md., on October 16, 1891; interment in Leak Cemetery, near Rockingham, Richmond County, N.C.

Source: Biographical Directory of the United States Congress, 1771-Present

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