Wickliffe, Charles A.

Born: 1788-06-08 Springfield, Kentucky

Died: 1869-10-31 Maryland

Wickliffe studied law and was admitted to the bar in 1809 in Kentucky, where he afterwards set up a legal practice. During the War of 1812, Wickliffe combined service in the U.S. Army with a tenure in the Kentucky House of Representatives. After the war, Wickliffe served two terms in the Kentucky House before being elected to the U.S. House of Representatives, where he served as a Jacksonian from 1823 to 1833. In 1833, Wickliffe returned to the Kentucky House, serving as speaker in 1834. He was elected lieutenant governor of Kentucky in 1836, and after the death of the governor he served as governor from 1839 to 1840. In 1841, President John Tyler appointed Wickliffe postmaster general, and Wickliffe held that position from 1841 to 1845. In 1845, President James K. Polk sent him on a secret mission to the Republic of Texas. When the Mexican War broke out, Wickliffe served as a captain in the 16th Regiment of Infantry. Wickliffe was a member of the Kentucky constitutional convention in 1849, and was a member of the peace conference in Washington, DC in 1861, in an effort to devise means to prevent the impending war. With the outbreak of the Civil War, Wickliffe was elected as a Unionist to the U.S. House, where he served from 1861 to 1863. He was not a candidate for reelection in 1862 and was an unsuccessful candidate for governor in 1863. Wickliffe was also a delegate to the Democratic National Convention of 1864.

Biographical Directory of the American Congress 1774-1996 (Alexandria, VA: CQ Staff Directories, 1997), 2053; Wm. Hugh Robarts, Mexican War Veterans: A Complete Roster of the Regular and Volunteer Troops in the War Between the United States and Mexico, from 1846 to 1848 (Washington, DC: Brentano's, 1887), 32.