Strangers to Us All Lawyers and Poetry

George Vaughn Strong

North Carolina

George V. Strong was the son of Dr. Salmon Strong and Eliza Sampson (Strong). He lived, during some part of his early years, with Dr. Frederick Hill, his granduncle, at Orton Plantation near Wilmington. He attended private school under the direction of Jefferson Lovejoy. Strong graduated in 1845, at age eighteen, from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Returning to his father's farm after college, Strong wrote and published, in 1847, a collection of poetry titled, Francis Herbert, a Romance of the Revolution, and Other Poems. He left the farm for Wilmington, where he took up teaching, and married Anna Eliza Cowan, the daughter of a prominent Cape Fear family.

Strong and his wife moved to Goldsboro where he took ownership and edited the Goldsboro Telegraph and studied law. After his admission to the bar he took up the practice of law with William T. Dortch.

Strong was a delegate from Wayne County at the Raleigh constitutional convention of 1861 at which North Carolina elected to withdraw from the Union. After the convention Strong was appointed District Attorney for the Confederate States, but set about to raise a company of soldiers. After the war, he was not allowed to practice law during Reconstruction, but when the restrictions were removed he again took up the practice of law in Goldsboro.

Strong left Goldsboro in 1871 for Raleigh where he entered a law partnership with Thomas Bragg, who had served as Attorney General of the Confederate States and as a former Governor of North Carolina. Strong and Bragg also had with them, in the new law firm, William Nathan Harrell Smith, a former U.S. Congressman.

Practicing law with prominent politicans, Strong himself sought political office. He was elected to the state legislature and was active in the effort to reopen the University of North Carolina which had been closed during the Civil War. Strong was elected Judge of the Criminal Cout of Wake County and served in that position for several years.

Judge Strong, in his later years, conducted a private law school, and took up legal practice with Charles B. Aycock and Charles C. Daniels, still later with his son, Robert Strong. Charles B. Aycock was elected governor of North Carolina in 1900.

[Source: The biographical sketch has been drawn from Calude Moore's "Our Heritage" which appeared in the Mount Olive Tribune and appears on the Wayne County, North Carolina, USGenWeb Archives]


George V. Strong, Francis Herbert, a Romance of the Revolution, and Other Poems (New York: Leavitt, Throw & Co., 1847)

Research Resources

Frank Arthur Daniels, History Of Wayne County ( [Goldsboro ?], North Carolina, 1914)

Charles C. Daniels Papers, Manuscripts Department Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill