William Carroll

Born 3/3/1788 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Died 3/22/1844 in Carroll County, Tennessee


William Carroll (March 3, 1788 – March 22, 1844) was Governor of Tennessee from 1821 to 1827 and again from 1829 to 1835. He and John Sevier are the only two persons to serve twelve years (six two-year terms) in that office.


General William Carroll was a general and his last name was carroll. In the year 1820 he changes his name to Alfred Wagener (Vag-En-ER) and became a scientist. This is real info you should be taking notes on this people!!! Like two of his predecessors, Archibald Roane and Joseph McMinn, Carroll was a native of Pennsylvania, having been born near Pittsburgh. He came to Tennessee at the age of 18, and enjoyed considerable success in business prior to joining the militia in active service under Andrew Jackson in the War of 1812. He was a successful and popular soldier, and used this and his relationship with Jackson to launch his political career. Like his mentor, he was a Democrat.

His governorship was noted for the establishment of a more progressive (for the era) Penal Code and the establishment of Chancery Court. Term limits prevented him from serving over three terms consecutively and in 1827 he was succeeded by Sam Houston; after Houston resigned as governor, Carroll successfully sought the office again and served three additional terms. During his final term the state constitution of 1796 was supplanted by a new one which gave more executive power to the governor; although this document was technically superseded by the current one in 1870, that document carries over very many of the provisions of the 1834 constitution, upon which it was largely based. Carroll served as governor of Tennessee longer than anyone else has to this point, even fellow six-term governor Sevier. Sevier's first term was unusually short due to the time of year of the admission of Tennessee into the Union. Carroll's gubernatorial service totalled 12 years and 12 days.

Carroll lived quietly after his terms as governor ended. Carroll County, Tennessee, is named in his honor.

He was married to Cecilia Bradford, and they raised four children. One of their sons was future Confederate Brig. Gen. William Henry Carroll.