“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Columbia in Maury County, Tennessee — The American South (East South Central)

Alfred Osborn Pope Nicholson

B. August 31, 1808 - D. March 23, 1876

Alfred Osborn Pope Nicholson Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, April 24, 2022
1. Alfred Osborn Pope Nicholson Marker
Inscription.  Born in Williamson County, A.O.P. Nicholson attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill at the age of fifteen. When he graduated four years later, Nicholson studied medicine and, later, law. He was admitted to the bar in 1831 and began his law practice in Columbia.

In addition to his law practice, A.O.P. Nicholson also started a family. He married a feisty woman of Irish descent named Caroline O'Reilly in 1829. She had been raised in Maury County's Bear Creek Community. The couple would have eight children.

Nicholson was also involved with journalism, which naturally made him political as well. From 1833 to 1839, Nicholson was the editor of the Westernm Mercury, a Columbia paper; editor of the Nashville Union 1844 to 1846; and edited the Washington Union 1853 to 1856. He was also the public printer of the U.S. House of Representatives. Politically, he served in the Tennessee House of Representatives between 1833 and 1839 and was appointed to the U.S. Senate on December 25, 1840 to fill the term of Felix Grundy who had passed away in office. This term ended February 7, 1842. A.O.P. Nicholson
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declined a position on President Franklin Pierce's cabinet, and was later elected to the U.S. Senate in 1859.

Tennessee seceded from the Union on June 8, 1861. Nicholson, a supporter of the Confederacy, never went back to his Senate seat. On July 11, 1861, a resolution was passed on the floor of the Senate to expel the Senators supporting the so-called Rebellion. A.O.P. Nicholson, along with nine other senators, were expelled this day. (Tennessee's other U.S. Senator was Andrew Johnson who retained his seat.) When the Federal Army entered Columbia in 1862, General Negley demanded Nicholson take an Oath of Allegiance to the Union. When he refused, the former US Senator was jailed, but was eventually released.

Following the War Between the States, A.O.P. Nicholson became the Chief Justice of the Tennessee Supreme Court. He held this position until his death in 1876. He is buried with his wife, Caroline, and several of their children. Their graves are straight ahead.
Erected by Rose Hill Cemetery.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Cemeteries & Burial SitesCommunicationsGovernment & PoliticsWar, US Civil. A significant historical date for this entry is August 31, 1808.
Location. 35° 36.198′ N, 87° 1.717′ W. Marker is in Columbia, Tennessee
Alfred Osborn Pope Nicholson Marker image. Click for full size.
Photographed By Duane and Tracy Marsteller, April 24, 2022
2. Alfred Osborn Pope Nicholson Marker
, in Maury County. Marker can be reached from the intersection of Cemetery Street and Whatley Street, on the right when traveling north. Marker is located in Block E of Rose Hill Cemetery. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 219 Cemetery St, Columbia TN 38401, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Edward Franklin “Pop” Geers (within shouting distance of this marker); Brigadier General John Carpenter Carter (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Lt. Joseph A. Irvine (about 400 feet away); Capt. Meade Frierson (about 400 feet away); The Confederate Monument (about 400 feet away); Capt. John Gordon (about 400 feet away); Rose Hill Confederate Memorial (about 400 feet away); Edward Ward Carmack (about 400 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Columbia.
Alfred O. P. Nicholson image. Click for full size.
Brady-Handy photograph collection, Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division (pub. dom.), circa 1860
3. Alfred O. P. Nicholson
Credits. This page was last revised on April 26, 2022. It was originally submitted on April 26, 2022, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. This page has been viewed 98 times since then and 43 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on April 26, 2022, by Duane and Tracy Marsteller of Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

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Sep. 30, 2023