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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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Williams, Archibald Hunter Arrington

by Robin A. Puckett, 1996

22 Oct. 1842–5 Sept. 1895

Archibald Hunter Arrington Williams, businessman and congressman, was born in Franklin County near Louisburg. His father, Henry G. Williams, had been a state senator representing Granville County. Archibald had four brothers, one of whom, H. G., was assistant superintendent of the U.S. House of Representatives Document Room. Another brother, Sam, edited the Raleigh News. Archibald Williams received his education at Emory and Henry College in Emory, Va. He enlisted as a private in the Army of Northern Virginia and by the end of the Civil War held the rank of captain and commanded the Fifty-sixth North Carolina Regiment.

After the war Williams entered retail trade in Oxford. He was instrumental in the completion of the Oxford and Henderson Railroad and served as its president. He sat in the North Carolina House of Representatives from 1883 to 1885. In 1890 he was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives as a Democrat from the Fifth Congressional District, a former Republican stronghold. Williams lost his bid for reelection in 1892 to Thomas Settle in a hotly disputed contest. He was a member of the Masonic lodge and the Order of Odd Fellows. For many years he served as one of the directors of the Oxford Orphan Asylum. He died in Chase City, Va., and was buried in Elmwood Cemetery, Oxford.


Biog. Dir. Am. Cong. (1961).

Oxford Public Ledger, 6, 13 Sept. 1895.

Person County Courier, 11 Sept. 1895.

Who Was Who in America, 1607–1896.

Additional Resources:

"Williams, Archibald Hunter Arrington, (1842 - 1895)." Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Washington, D.C.: The Congress. (accessed March 11, 2014).


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