ARIZARD-L ArchivesArchiver > ARIZARD > 2008-08 > 1218842238
From: PEGGY TRUESDELL <>
Subject: Re: [ARIZARD] KING - Post 2 of 2 (Don)
Date: Fri, 15 Aug 2008 16:17:18 -0700 (PDT)
Don, rest assured -- your input would never be regarded as "butting in."
William Rufus Devane KING is from line in book, "Our KING Family, Their Ancestors In-Laws and Descendants," by Oscar Benjamin KING, A.B., M.A., copyrighted 1970 by O. B. KING, printed in the United States, The Manney Company, 1041 Isbell Road, Fort Worth, TX 76114.
Page 78 has picture with caption: This is the Fayetteville Masonic Lodge, No. 8, A.M. & F.M., in North Carolina. William Rufus KING early belonged to this lodge and was a faithful attendant while he lived there. I am informed that his picture hangs on the entrance hall but the building was closed when I was there.
Page 79 - Chapter XV
William Rufus KING, Vice President of U.S.
The most famous of the children of William KING and his wife Margaret was William Rufus KING, born April 7, 1786, in the little town where his parents lived. He showed marvelous talent in the early days. He entered college at age 12 at the University of North Carolina and was outstanding there. In fact he was so brilliant that by age twenty he had graduated from the University of North Carolina and had studied law under his friend William DUFFY at Fayetteville enough that he could pass the bar requirements and enter the practice of law in the year 1806.
He was soon elected to fill a place in the North Carolina State legislature and by the time he was twenty four years old he was in the national house of representatives and served in a brilliant way with such men as Henry CLAY, Daniel WEBSTER, and CALHOUN.
In fact Henry CLAY was born nine years, lacking five days, before William Rufus KING was born. Both entered practice of law at age 20, CLAY was in the Kentucky legislature at age 26, William Rufus in North Carolina legislature at age 20; CLAY in U.S. Congress in 1811 at age 34, William was there in 1810 at age 24 (CLAY had served in the U.S. senate a little while by appointment). This is to show how well William started off. By 1810 and the end of the next two years he had served as secretary of the U.S. legation in both Naples and Russia.
About the year 1818 he cast his lot with the people of Alabama as a cotton planter. He settled at Cahaba, a small town a few miles south of Selma in Dallas County, and he lived there till his death in 1853, just one year following the death of Henry CLAY.
In Dallas County he was soon asked to help form the Alabama State Constitution, which he did and did his part well. But the U.S. felt his services were needed badly in France, for pleading with that nation to stay out of the proposal to annex Texas to the United States. England opposed the annexation and tried to get France to take the same attitude. KING was credited, as minister to France, with persuading Louis Phillipe to stay out of the affair and Texas was annexed on December 29, 1845.
There is a cute story about William Rufus and his stay at the Russian legation. The story is that the Czar and his wife invited accredited representative countries to a reception. The daughter of the Czar was in the receiving line, and was right pretty, so William Rufus hesitated slightly as he passed her and, holding the hand of the young lady, kissed it and moved on. His friends promptly told him that such a procedure might cost him his job. He realized the seriousness of it and became afraid that his place in the legation was about ended.
To his surprise next morning, before he arose for his day's work, there came a knock on his door by an officer of the Czar's household. I am guessing that William Rufus said "WIPE SIR" this is it. The officer handed him a note and, surprisingly, it was from the daughter, and it expressed pleasure at meeting him the night before and invited him to call again at the palace. You see he was a bachelor. Never did marry.
William Rufus KING was elected Vice-President of the United States on the ticket with Franklin PIERCE [Barbara BUSH's ancestor] in 1852. However by this time he had contracted tuberculosis and could not attend inaugural ceremonies. He went to Havana, Cuba, for his health, where he was sworn in as Vice-President through special act of Congress. He soon returned to Cahaba where he died. Was buried April 18, 1853. However some years later it was proposed that his body be removed from Cahaba to Selma a few miles away and placed in the cemetery there where it could be properly cared for. That was done and there is a nice crypt built there, a fit signature to the end of a life that had done so much for his country and his friends. He has been regarded as one of America's very brilliant statesmen, patriots, citizens.
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Continues with "Here is a leaf from The Bible of William Rufus KING."
It was in late 1970s that I discovered one of several wives of William R. HURST of Franklin and Colbert County, Alabama and Baxter County, Arkansas was a DEVANEY. Have always wondered if she was connected to the DEVANE family of William Rufus Devane KING. Some DEVANEYs were in early Baxter County census, but may have returned to Alabama.
Picture of William Rufus Devane KING appears at top of page 80. Lower part of page is picture with caption: "Tomb of William Rufus KING. Born in Sampson County, N.C.,, this man later moved (1818) to Alabama. He organized the Selma Land Company, and built
Selma, Alabama. The U.S. honored him many times, the last by electing him Vice-President in 1852. He never got to serve on account of a fatal case of tuberculosis, from which he died in 1853 soon after he was sworn in down in Cuba, where he had gone for his health. He came home a very sick man and died soon after his arrival. Was buried at Cahaba, his beloved city, but later removed to Selma where a suitable place of rest was made in Olive Oak Cemetery there. O. B. KING [author] stands by.
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