Rhodes, Rufus Napoleon (1856 - 1910)

HOUSE, 42nd General Assembly, 1881-83; representing Montgomery County; Democrat. Born at Pascagoula, Jackson County, Mississippi, June 5, 1856; son of Rufus and Martha (Fisher) Rhodes. Attended “common schools” of Montgomery County; Stewart College and Southwestern Presbyterian University, both of Clarksville, Montgomery County; studied law and admitted to bar; awarded honorary degree of LL.D. by University of Alabama, 1906. Married in Montgomery County, June 27, 1882, to Margaret Smith, daughter of C. H. and Lucy (Dabney) Smith; no children indicated. Came to Montgomery County with mother and sisters after death of father. Began practice of law at Clarksville and continued to 1883; practiced in Chicago, IL, 1883-87; removed to Birmingham, AL, 1888, to found, manage, and edit the Birmingham News; became sole owner; a director and 2nd vice-president Associated Press. City attorney of Clarksville, 1877-81; Capt of Clarksville City Guards, 1882; delegate from Alabama to Democratic national conventions 1892 and 1904. Brig. Gen., Alabama National Guard. Member Protestant Episcopal Church. Died at Birmingham Jan 12, 1910; buried in Elmwood Cemetery, Birmingham.

Sources: Clarksville Daily Leaf-Chronicle, Sep 23, 1905; Jan 12, 13, 1910; Nov 29, 1930; Who Was Who in America, 1897-1942, p 1025; Goodspeed, History of Montgomery County, 815; Beach, Along the Warioto, 138, 252.

Biographies submitted by Jill Hastings-Johnson, Montgomery County Archivist

Return to the Biographical Directory Index