South Carolina Supreme Court Justices

Alexander Cheves Haskell
Date Born: September 22, 1839

 Date Died: April 13, 1910

Place Born: Abbeville District, SC

Place Buried: Elmswood Cemetery in Columbia, SC


Associate Justice 1877 - 1879

Alexander Cheves Haskell was born on September 22, 1839 in Abbeville District, SC, the son of Charles Thomson Haskell and Sophia L. (Cheves) Haskell. He graduated with honors from the South Carolina College (later the University of South Carolina) in 1860, just before the U.S. Civil War broke out.

On January 3, 1861, Alexander Cheves Haskell volunteered as a Private in Company D, 1st Regiment, SC Volunteer Infantry, under the command of Col. Maxcy Gregg. Able and well-connected, he quickly advanced through the ranks and ended the war as Colonel of the 7th SC Cavalry. Haskell was wounded four times during the war: in the shoulder on December 13, 1862 at Fredericksburg, VA; in the ankle on May 2, 1863 at Chancellorsville; in the abdomen on May 29, 1864 near Cold Harbor; and most seriously being shot in the head and left for dead on October 7, 1864 on the Darbytown Road near Richmond, VA. After an amazing and rapid recovery, Haskell, minus his left eye, was able to rejoin his unit in time for General Robert E. Lee's last campaign of the war. He surrendered at Appomattox, received his parole, and made his way back to the home of his parents.

Early in the war, on September 10, 1861, Alexander Cheves Haskell married Rebecca "Decca" Coles Singleton, daughter of John and Mary Singleton, in Charlottesville, VA. She died in 1862 after giving birth to their only daughter.

After the war, Alexander Cheves Haskell taught school in Abbeville, SC, while simultaneously studying law. In December of 1865, he was admitted to the SC bar.

Also in late 1865, he was elected as one of five men to represent Abbeville County in the SC House of Representatives of the:
- 47th General Assembly that met from 1865 to 1866

In 1867, Alexander Cheves Haskell was elected a Judge of the District Court in Abbeville. Very soon after accepting the judgeship, he was elected to as a Professor of Law at the University of South Carolina in Columbia, and he resigned from the judiciary in September of 1867. He retained this position until July of 1868, when he was named as a Presidential Elector for the Democratic Party.

At the close of the national election campaign of 1868, Alexander Cheves Haskell opened his own law office in Columbia, SC, and shortly thereafter established a law partnership with Joseph D. Pope. This partnership continued until December of 1877, when he was elected to the SC Supreme Court.

On November 23, 1870, Alexander Cheves Haskell married a second time in Savannah, GA, to Alice Van Yeveren Alexander, daughter of Adam Leopold Alexander and Sarah Hillhouse (Gilbert) Alexander of Washington, GA; they had ten known children.

In 1876, Alexander Cheves Haskell was chosen Chairman of the South Carolina Democratic Party Executive Committee.

In December of 1877, Alexander Cheves Haskell was sworn in as an Associate Justice on the SC Supreme Court, replacing Associate Justice Jonathan Jasper Wright, who had resigned in August of 1877. Haskell served on the SC Supreme Court for less than two years and resigned in late 1879.

In 1880, Alexander Cheves Haskell was named President of the Charlotte, Columbia & Augusta Railroad (CC&A RR), which had been recently acquired by the Richmond & Danville Railroad (R&D RR). In 1883, he was also named President of the Columbia & Greenville Railroad (G&C RR), which was a new re-incarnation of the earlier Greenville & Columbia Railroad (G&C RR). Haskell clearly exhibited a high order of executive ability and proved himself to be a skillful financier. He led both railroads until 1889.

Meanwhile in 1886, Alexander Cheves Haskell was also named President of the Loan & Exchange Bank of South Carolina. He continued to manage this bank until 1897, when he effected the consolidation of the Loan & Exchange Bank with the Canal Bank, and he then stepped down to the position of Vice President. In 1903, the bank was renamed as the National Loan & Exchange Bank of Columbia.

At the time of his death, Alexander Cheves Haskell was serving as Vice-President of the National Loan & Exchange Bank of Columbia.

On April 13, 1910, Alexander Cheves Haskell died, and he was buried in the Elmswood Cemetery in Columbia, SC.

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