THOMAS MANN RANDOLPH was born at Tuckahoe in Goochland County, Virginia and educated at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg and at the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. He was a member of the Virginia Senate in 1793 and 1794 and the U.S. House of Representatives from 1803 to 1807. After serving as a Colonel in both the Virginia Militia and the Twentieth U.S. Infantry during the War of 1812, he was elected to the Virginia House of Delegates for a single session and was then chosen by the state legislature to serve three one-year terms as governor. Also during his administration, a colony was founded in Texas by Stephen Austin, a native of Wythe County, Virginia. After leaving office, Randolph served two additional terms in the Virginia House of Delegates. He is said to have died from exposure after giving his cloak to a beggar on the highway. His father-in-law, Thomas Jefferson, called him "a man of science, sense, virtue, and competence."

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