Robert Burns Lindsay Bio



ROBERT BURNS LINDSAY, a native of Lowlands, Scotland, was born in 1824, and educated at the parochial schools, and from thence was sent to the University of St Andrews. He was a prize student of Burser under the principalship of the celebrated Sir David Brewster. In 1844 he came to the United States on a visit to his brother, David R. Lindsay, who was a teacher in the State of North Carolina. He concluded to remain in this country, and located in the latter State, where he became a teacher. In 1849 he removed to Alabama, located at Tuscumbia, and taught school until 1852. While in North Carolina he began the study of law under Col. Robert Treat Paine, and after coming to Alabama continued his studies. He was admitted to the bar in the last named year. In the fall of 1853 he was elected to the lower house of the State Legislature as a representative of Franklin County, and in 1857 was elected to the State senate as a Democrat. In 1860 he was appointed an elector for his district on the Democratic ticket, but refused to serve. He, however, accepted a similar position on the Douglas ticket, being a conservative and opposed to secession. He resisted secession with all his might and power, but after the ordinance was passed he remained loyal to the State of his adoption.

After the war he was again elected to the senate, where he remained until reconstruction times. From that period until 1870 he practiced his profession with success. In the latter named year he was elected Governor of the state and served one term, refusing to allow his name to be presented for a second term. Two months after his term expired he was stricken with paralysis, and has ever since been an invalid; but he has still retained his practice, although not as actively as before. Since his retirement from the Governorís office he has taken no part in politics.

Governor Lindsay was married, in 1854, to Miss Sarah Miller Winston, the accomplished daughter of William Winston, and a sister of Gov. John Anthony Winston. She is also a sister-in-law to Governor Pettus, of Mississippi. This union has been blessed with numerous offspring, but only four daughters survive, the eldest being the wife of Robert H. Watkins, Esq., of the Birmingham Age.

The family belongs to the Presbyterian Church, and the Governor is distinguished as being one of the oldest members of the I. O. O. F. of this State.

[SOURCE: Northern Alabama Historical and Biographical. Illustrated. Smith and De Land, Birmingham, Ala. 1888., p. 431]

Typed for inclusion on this site by Linda Ledlow

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