James B. Morgan

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James Bright Morgan (March 14, 1833 – June 18, 1892) was a U.S. Representative from Mississippi.

James Bright Morgan
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Mississippi's 2nd district
In office
March 4, 1885 – March 3, 1891
Preceded byJames R. Chalmers
Succeeded byJohn C. Kyle
Member of the Mississippi Senate
In office
Personal details
Born(1833-03-14)March 14, 1833
Fayetteville, Tennessee, U.S.
DiedJune 18, 1892(1892-06-18) (aged 59)
Horn Lake, Mississippi, U.S.
Cause of deathShot
Political partyDemocratic

He was born near Fayetteville, Tennessee and moved with his parents to De Soto County, Mississippi in 1840, settling in Hernando. He received an academic education and studied law. Morgan was admitted to the bar in 1857, and practiced in Hernando.

In 1857 he was elected probate judge of De Soto County and he served until 1861, the outbreak of the Civil War.

During the Civil War, Morgan enlisted in the Confederate States Army, initially as a private. He eventually received a commission and progressed through the ranks, becoming major of the Twenty-ninth Mississippi Infantry. He attained the rank of colonel before the end of the war; after he war he returned to his law practice and was once again elected probate judge of De Soto County.

Morgan was elected to the Mississippi State Senate in 1876, and served until 1878 when he became Chancellor of the third chancery district, a post he held until 1882. He was then elected as a Democrat to the Forty-ninth, Fiftieth, and Fifty-first Congresses (March 4, 1885 – March 3, 1891).

After retiring from his political career he resumed the practice of law. He died near Horn Lake, Mississippi on June 18, 1892, and was interred at Hernando Baptist Cemetery.

Morgan died when he was shot while on board a train traveling to Memphis, Tennessee;[1] his assailant was attorney Henry Foster.[1] Morgan and Foster had been opposing counsel in a lawsuit shortly before Morgan's death, which led to an argument between Foster and Morgan's son;[1] Morgan responded by administering a caning to Foster.[1] Foster retaliated by shooting Morgan.[1] Foster was convicted at his first trial.[2] After a successful appeal resulted in a retrial, he was acquitted in 1894.[2]




  • "Mississippi Delegate Shot: Judge John Bright Morgan Murdered on a Train". Salt Lake Tribune. Salt lake City, UT. June 19, 1892. p. 1 – via Newspapers.com.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)
  • "Morgan's Slayer Acquitted". The Daily Commercial Herald. Vicksburg, MS. June 23, 1894. p. 2 – via Newspapers.com.CS1 maint: extra punctuation (link)

External linksEdit

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
James R. Chalmers
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Mississippi's 2nd congressional district

Succeeded by
John C. Kyle