It is surprising how little known this distinguished statesman is to the present generation in South Carolina. No memoir or sketch of him has ever been written. His name is not mentioned ever in any encyclopedia or biographical dictionary, yet he was, in his day and time, an eminent statesman of Carolina, a prominent member of her Legislature, an active and conspicuous delegate in the Federal Convention which framed the Constitution of the United States, and three times elected a United States Senator.
Pierce Butler was a sprig of nobility, an Irishman by birth, and a member of the noble house of the great Duke of Ormond who was educated by James the First of England, and who proved himself a loyal adherent to his son and grandson in all the civil strifes and wars of Great Britain. Pierce Butler was a colonel in the British army, and sold his commission for fifteen thousand pounds. He then emigrated to America and settled in South Carolina some years prior to our revolutionary war. He married a Miss Middleton, I think, the aunt of Governor Henry Middleton. He became a warm and active partisan in our revolutionary struggle, as all of his countrymen did, without a single exception known to the writer. The Irish were known then and now for their love of liberty and hatred of oppression. And yet, few people on earth have enjoyed less of the one, or felt more of the other, than the Irish nation.
When Judge William Smith, of South Carolina, who had been a distinguished United States Senator for many years, became a candidate for the Legislature in York District, he was charged with great condescension and want of dignity by the Nullifiers, in his humble aspira-