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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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Efird, Oscar Ogburn

by Frank P. Cauble, 1986

12 Jan. 1892–13 May 1974

Oscar Ogburn Efird, lawyer, jurist, teacher, and genealogist, was born in Winston, the son of Francis Bruner and Minnie Victoria Ogburn Efird and the grandson of the Reverend Adam Efird, a Lutheran minister in South Carolina. He attended the public schools in Winston, and received an A.B. from Roanoke College (1912), an A.M. from Princeton University (1913), an LL.B. from Harvard Law School (1919), and an honorary LL.D. from Roanoke College (1971). During World War I he served for a short time in the U.S. Army, attended a summer session at The University of North Carolina, and in August 1918 was licensed to practice law in North Carolina.

From 1919 to 1921, Efird was a professor of law at The University of North Carolina where he introduced the casebook system of teaching law. He then returned to Winston-Salem to engage in private practice and established a new index of the records and conveyances in the office of the Register of Deeds of Forsyth County. He served as assistant judge of the municipal court in Winston-Salem from 1926 to 1928, and was judge of the Forsyth County Court for fourteen years. Although he received more than 180,000 votes, he was an unsuccessful candidate in the 1948 Democratic primary for the office of associate justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court.

From 1953 to 1964, Efird compiled a history and genealogy of the Efird family which was published in 1964. His wife assisted him in gathering data for this book and some of her paintings are reproduced in it.

He married Frances Kathrina Susan Koiner on 9 Sept. 1920. There were no children. He was a lifelong member of the Lutheran church, and was buried in the Salem Cemetery, Winston-Salem.


O. O. Efird, The History and Genealogy of the Efird Family (1964).

Winston-Salem Journal, 14 May 1974.

Winston-Salem Journal-Sentinel, 26 July 1964.

Winston-Salem Twin City Sentinel, 31 May 1971, 13 May 1974.

Additional Resources:

"The Honorable Oscar O. Efird '12." Roanoke College. (accessed February 18, 2014).

Hayes, Anna R. Without Precedent: The Life of Susie Marshall Sharp. Chapel Hill, N.C.: University of North Carolina Press. 2009. 81, 173, 174. (accessed February 18, 2014).

"Field Notes and Communications." Conservation and Industry (North Carolina Department of Conservation and Development) 8, no. 5 (May 1931). 6. (accessed February 18, 2014).