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Stedman, William (1822–1890)

Randolph B. Campbell Biography Entry

William Stedman, lawyer, legislator, and Confederate officer, son of William Clark and Sarah (Sturdevant) Stedman, was born at Pittsboro, North Carolina, on March 13, 1822. He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1842. On June 19, 1845, he married Clara Harvey White, daughter of Thomas Willis White, founder of the Southern Literary Messenger. They had at least four children, including Nathan Alexander Stedman. Stedman moved to Texas in 1851, settling at Henderson. He represented Rusk County in the House of the Sixth Texas Legislature, 1855–56. Stedman was elected attorney general of Texas in August 1863, but he did not qualify for the office and instead, although an anti-secessionist, went into the Confederate Army as a major on the staff of Elkanah Greer. After the war Stedman practiced law at Henderson until 1867, when he moved his office to Marshall, where he was very active in Harrison County’s legal issues during Reconstruction. He died at Marshall on November 6, 1890, and was buried in the Marshall Cemetery.

Biennial Report of the Attorney General of the State of Texas from September 1, 1934 to August 31, 1936 (Austin, 1936). Members of the Texas Legislature, 1846–1962 (Austin, 1962). Dorman H. Winfrey, A History of Rusk County (Waco: Texian, 1961).


  • Law, Law Enforcement, and Outlaws
  • Lawyers
  • General Law

Time Periods:

  • Civil War

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Randolph B. Campbell, “Stedman, William,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed October 24, 2020,

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