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David S. Terry

New Constitution

Picture of David S. Terry
Date Party Office Votes Result
09-03-1879 New Constitution Attorney General 23079 Loss

Candidate Biography:

Born: March 8, 1823 in Christian County, Kentucky
Married: Cornelia Runnels (m. 1852, d. 1884), Sarah Althea Hill (m. 1886)
Children: Franklin D., Samuel L., David S. Jr., Clinton H., Jefferson Davis Terry, and ???
Military Service: Texas Mounted Riflemen (Mexican-American War), Confederate Army (Civil War)
Killed: August 14, 1889 in Lathrop, CA

1847: Candidate for Galveston District Attorney (Lost) 
1855-1857: Justice, California Supreme Court
1857-1859: Chief Justice, California Supreme Court
1879: Delegate, Second Constitutional Convention (Sacramento)

  • Legal Troubles: In 1856, Terry stabbed Sterling A. Hopkins (of San Francisco's Vigilance Committee) in the neck with a Bowie knife. Hopkins survived. [LINK]
  • Legal Troubles: In 1859, Terry shot US Senator David C. Broderick during a duel near San Francisco. Broderick died five days later of his injuries. [LINK].
  • High Rank: Colonel (Confederate States Army). During the Civil War, Terry was a Colonel in the Confederate Army, leading "Terry's Cavalry Regiment" in Texas. The second commander of the regiment was Lt. Colonel Samuel H. Brooks, who had resigned as Controller to join the unit. 
  • In 1861, Terry acted as a second representative of William W. Porter in a duel against James E. Nuttman, who was acting as a second representative of Henry G. Worthington.
  • OUCH: In 1889, Terry attacked US Supreme Court Justice Stephen J. Field in what has been described as an 'assassination attempt'. Terry was shot and killed by Field's bodyguard. [LINK]

Source: History of Political Conventions in California, 1849-1892 by Winfield J. Davis (1893)