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Kenan, Thomas

by Thomas S. Kenan III, 1988

26 Feb. 1771–22 Oct. 1843

T"Libery Hall", the ancestral home of the Kenan family in Kenansville. Orginially built by Thomas' father, James Kenan.homas Kenan, legislator and congressman, was born in Duplin County, the son of James and Sarah Love Kenan. He represented Duplin County in the House of Commons in 1798–99 and in the Senate in 1804. Kenan served in the Ninth, Tenth, and Eleventh Congresses from 4 Mar. 1805 to 3 Mar. 1811. He owned and operated Laughlin Plantation on the Northeast Cape Fear River, which consisted of over 5,000 acres.

In 1833 Kenan moved his family to Selma, Ala., where he purchased a large plantation and built a handsome home, which still stands. For several years he served in the Alabama House of Representatives.

Kenan married Mary Rand of Raleigh in 1800, and they had ten children: Catherine Elizabeth, Sarah, Owen Rand, Julia Susannah, James, Thomas Daniel, John Rand, Daniel Love, William Kimbro, and Mary Rand. A member of the Presbyterian church, Kenan died at his plantation and was buried at Valley Creek Cemetery near Selma.

References:

Kenan family records in the author's possession.

Faison W. McGowen and Pearl C. McGowen, eds., Flashes of Duplin History and Government (1971).

Alvaretta Kenan Register, ed., The Kenan Family (1967).

Additional Resources:

Biographical Directoy of the United States Congress: http://bioguide.congress.gov/scripts/biodisplay.pl?index=K000089

Register, Alvaretta Kenan. The Kenan family and some allied families of the compiler and publisher. Statesboro, Ga., J. S. Kenan II. 1967. http://archive.org/details/kenanfamilysomea00regi (accessed February 15, 2013).

Kenan Family Papers, 1748-1996 (collection no. 04225). The Southern Historical Collection. Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. http://www.lib.unc.edu/mss/inv/k/Kenan_Family.html (accessed February 15, 2013).

"Liberty Hall." N.C. Highway Historical Marker F-47, N.C. Office of Archives & History. http://www.ncmarkers.com/Markers.aspx?sp=Markers&k=Markers&sv=F-47 (accessed February 19, 2013).

Image Credits:

Liberty Hall. Register, Alvaretta Kenan. The Kenan family and some allied families of the compiler and publisher. Statesboro, Ga., J. S. Kenan II. 1967. http://archive.org/details/kenanfamilysomea00regi (accessed February 15, 2013).

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Copyright notice

This article is from the Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, 6 volumes, edited by William S. Powell. Copyright ©1979-1996 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

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