JOHN OWEN, the twenty-fourth governor of North Carolina, was born in Bladen County, North Carolina in August 1787. His education was attained at the University of North Carolina. Owen first entered politics as a member of the North Carolina House of Commons, a position he held from 1812 to 1814. He also served as a member of the North Carolina Senate from 1819 to 1820 and 1827 to 1828; and was a member of the Council of State from 1824 to 1827. Owen next won election to the governorship in 1828. He went on to win reelection to a second term in 1829. During his tenure, appropriations were secured for construction of canal locks at Weldon. Also, educational improvements were endorsed; and the offices of county clerk and sheriff became elected positions. After leaving the governor’s office, Owen ran unsuccessfully for a seat in the U.S. Senate. He later served as a member of the 1835 State Constitutional Convention. He also chaired the first Whig Party state convention in 1839, as well as serving as president of the National Whig Convention that same year. In 1840, Owen declined an offer to run as William H. Harrison’s vice president. Governor John Owen passed away on October 9, 1841, and was buried in the St. Bartholomew’s Cemetery in Pittsboro, North Carolina.
Note: Actual birthdate is not known.
Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
Notable Names Database