CHARLES MANLY, the thirty-first governor of North Carolina, was born in Chatham County, North Carolina on May 13, 1795. His education was attained at the Pittsboro Academy, and at the University of North Carolina, where he earned an undergraduate degree in 1814, as well as earning an A.M. degree. He went on to study law, and in 1816 was admitted to the bar. Manly first entered politics in 1823, serving on the Washington D.C. commission that negotiated claims under the Treaty of Ghent. He also served as clerk of the North Carolina House of Commons from 1831 to 1841 and 1844 to 1847; and was secretary and treasurer of the University of North Carolina Board of Trustees from 1821 to 1849. Manly next secured the Whig gubernatorial nomination, and was elected governor by a popular vote in the 1848 general election. During his tenure, an asylum bill was sanctioned; a state geological survey was recommended; and internal improvements were endorsed. After running unsuccessfully for reelection, Manly retired from politics. He resumed his legal career, as well as returning to his duties as secretary and treasurer of the University of North Carolina Board of Trustees, a post he held from 1850 to 1868. Governor Charles Manly passed away on May 1, 1871, and was buried in the City Cemetery in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the Untied States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
University Library, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill