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Sydenham Benoni Alexander (December 2, 1840 – June 14, 1921) was a Democratic U.S. Congressman from North Carolina between 1891 and 1895.

Early life[edit | edit source]

Alexander, born near Charlotte, North Carolina in 1840, attended preparatory schools in Rocky River and Wadesboro and graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1860.[1]

Career[edit | edit source]

At the outbreak of the American Civil War in 1861, he enlisted in the Confederate Army as a private in the First Regiment, North Carolina Volunteer Infantry.[1] He was elected captain of Company K, Forty-second North Carolina Regiment, in June 1862.[1] He detached from his company in 1864 and served as inspector general on the staff of Maj. Gen. Robert F. Hoke.[1]

After the Civil War, Alexander was a member of the North Carolina Senate in 1879, 1883, 1885, 1887, where he was instrumental in the establishment of the North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (later North Carolina State University; Alexander served on its board of trustees), and was president of the North Carolina Railroad. He became the first president of the North Carolina Farmers Alliance around 1887.[2] He was an unsuccessful candidate for the Democratic nomination for Governor of North Carolina in 1888. After his defeat at the state convention by Daniel Gould Fowle, Alexander was offered the nomination for Lieutenant Governor but declined.[3]

A Democrat, Alexander was elected to the U.S. House in 1890 and served in the 52nd and 53rd Congresses. He did not run for a third term in 1894, but retired to his "Enderly Plantation" estate in Mecklenburg County. He served one additional term in the North Carolina Senate in 1901.

Death and legacy[edit | edit source]

Alexander finally moved to Charlotte in 1906 and died there in 1921; he is buried in Elmwood Cemetery.

Notes[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Who Was Who in American History - the Military. Chicago: Marquis Who's Who. 1975. p. 6. ISBN 0837932017. 
  2. History of North Carolina: North Carolina since 1860, p. 226.
  3. History of North Carolina: North Carolina since 1860, p. 228.

External links[edit | edit source]

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Alfred Rowland
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from North Carolina's 6th congressional district

Succeeded by
James A. Lockhart

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