Wade Hampton III Facts

Wade Hampton III Facts
Wade Hampton III was an officer in the Confederate Army during the American Civil War, who later served as United States Senator and Governor for the state of South Carolina. Hampton was a true firebrand defender of slavery and the South and after the war a proponent of the "Lost Cause" ideology and a vehement opponent of Reconstruction. It was during his political career during the late 1800s when he became involved with the Red Shirts and other militant white supremacist groups. Although he was never a member of those groups, he worked closely with them as they often served as the paramilitary wing of the Democrat Party in many southern states. Hampton was born Wade Hampton III on March 28, 1818 in Charleston, South Carolina to Wade Hampton II and Ann Hampton. His family were wealthy plantation owners who were able to pay for tutors and send Wade to South Carolina College. After college, Wade worked for his father on various plantations and then enlisted in the Confederate Army at the beginning of the war as a private, but advanced to the rank of Lieutenant General. Hampton was married twice and had nine children.
Interesting Wade Hampton III Facts:
Hampton was forty-two with no military experience when he enlisted in the Confederate Army, but quickly advanced due in large part to his high social standing.
Despite gaining rank due to his social standing, Wade proved to be an able officer and excellent cavalryman, distinguishing himself in numerous battles in the Eastern Theater of operations.
Hampton played a crucial role in the Confederate victory at the Battle of Trevilian Station (June 11-12) in Louisa County, Virginia. Interestingly, Hampton surrounded Union Brigadier General, Georg A. Custer, in what was later known by some historians as "Custer's First Last Stand."
Hampton kept a low profile in the decade after the Civil War, partly due to Reconstruction, which made it difficult for former Confederates to hold office.
He was known to have raised money for members of the Ku Klux Klan who were charged under anti-Klan laws, but was not known to have been a member of the organization.
Hampton used a brothel in Charleston as the headquarters for Red Shirts organizing activities.
After reconstruction ended in 1876, Hampton won the Democratic nomination for governor. Due to the activities of the Red Shirts and "rifle clubs," it then became a one party state. Hampton was the governor from 1876-1879.
The 1876 election was extremely violent and both parties claimed victory. After President Rutherford Hayes pulled federal troops out of South Carolina, the Democrats had the muscle in the form of the Red Shirts and rifle clubs that could assure their victory.
The "rifle clubs" were loosely organized paramilitary groups that attacked blacks and white Republicans during Reconstruction.
Hampton was elected United States Senator from South Carolina in 1878 and held that office until 1891.
Hampton died on April 11, 1902 in Columbia, South Carolina at the age of eighty-four.

Related Links:
Civil War Facts
Animals Facts