Evans, Josiah James | South Carolina Public Radio

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“E” is for Evans, Josiah James [1786-1858]. Jurist. U.S. Senator. In 1812, Evans was elected to the South Carolina House of Representatives from Marlboro District and in 1816 was elected solicitor for the Northern Circuit. From 1829 1852, the legislature regularly elected him to serve as judge on several state courts. While a judge, he authored Road Law, a digest of South Carolina law. However, his legal reputation rests with his being lead counsel in successfully defending the estate of Mason Lee against challenges by Lee’s relatives. The case is one of the most legendary in South Carolina legal history. In 1852, the General Assembly elected Evans to the U.S. Senate. Although a supporter of states’ rights and strong defender of his native state against the virulent attacks of Massachusetts Senator Charles Sumner, Josiah James Evans did not support disunion.