Documenting the American South

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Signature of James L. Dusenbery and several photographs artistically combined.

Steele, Walter Leak

Walter Leak Steele (1823-1891) of Richmond County, NC, the son of Judith Mosely Leak Cole (1789-1868) and Thomas (1790-1838) Steele, a merchant, miller, and farmer. Walter entered the University in 1841, joined the Dialectic Society, and graduated with second honors in 1844. That same year he married Harriet Ann Crawford (1827-1863); they were the parents of seven children. Steele received his MA from the University in 1847 and became a lawyer and manufacturer in Rockingham, NC. He served in the NC House of Commons from 1846-50 and in 1854; he was elected to the US Senate in 1852 and 1858 and served as a member of the University’s Board of Trustees from 1852 to 1868 and 1874 to 1891 (Dictionary of North Carolina Biography 5:434-35).





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