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This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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Bryan, Henry H.

by H. James Hutcheson, 1979; Revised November 2022.

d. 7 May 1835

See also: Joseph Hunter Bryan, brother

Henry H. Bryan, congressman, was born in Martin County and attended local schools before moving to Tennessee. He married Milly Taylor 13 June 1799; they were the parents of a son and a daughter, Henry H. and Mariana T., who married William Dortch. In Tennessee, Bryan held several local offices and on 21 May 1808 was commissioned captain of the Twenty-fourth Regiment, Tennessee Militia (Montgomery County). On 29 Dec. 1808 he was promoted to first major.

Bryan was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives from Montgomery County, Tenn., in 1818 and served in the Sixteenth Congress (1819–21). He was appointed to the Committee on Private Land Claims and is recorded as introducing three petitions: two from constituents seeking compensation and one for a post road in Montgomery County. There is no further record of any action taken by him in Congress. He was reelected to the following session but did not qualify.

Bryan died in Montgomery County, the enslaver of eleven people and owner of an extensive span of property. His sole heir was his daughter, but at a sale of some of his possessions, five different persons named Bryan made purchases.


Biog. Dir. Am. Cong. (1971).

Bryan's will (Clarksville, Tenn.).

Mrs. John Trotwood Moore, comp., Record of Commissions of Officers in the Tennessee Militia, 1796 to 1811, vol. 1 (1947).

U.S. House of Representatives Journal, 1819–21.

Who Was Who in America, 1607–1896.

Additional Resources:

"Bryan, Henry Hunter, (1786 - 1835)." Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Washington, D.C.: The Congress. (accessed December 11, 2013).

Robson, Charles; Galaxy Publishing Company. The Biographical encyclopædia of Pennsylvania of the nineteenth century. Philadelphia : Galaxy Pub. Co. 1874. 46. (accessed December 11, 2013).

Handy, Isaac W. K. Annals and Memorials of the Handys and Their Kindred: The Handy Annals. University of Michigan, William L. Clements Library, 1992. 202. (accessed December 11, 2013).

Risjord, Norman K. The Old Republicans: Southern Conservatism in the Age of Jefferson. Columbia University Press, 1965. 186 (accessed December 11, 2013).

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