Back to former North Carolina governors
David Settle Reid
North Carolina

Gov. David Settle Reid

  • January 1, 1851 - December 5, 1854
  • Democratic
  • April 19, 1813
  • June 19, 1891
  • North Carolina
  • Married Henrietta Settle; three children
  • Resigned
  • Representative, Senator


DAVID S. REID, the thirty-second governor of North Carolina, was born near Reidsville, North Carolina on April 19, 1813. His early education was attained in the common schools of his native state. He later studied law, and then established his legal career in Wentworth. Settle first entered politics in 1835, serving as a member of the North Carolina Senate, a position he held seven years. He also served as a member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1843 to 1847. Reid next secured the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, and was elected governor by a popular vote in the 1850 general election. He was reelected to a second term in 1852. During his tenure, a free suffrage act was lobbied for; the Missouri Compromise was endorsed; and educational improvements were initiated. Upon his election to the U.S. Senate, Reid resigned from the governorship on December 5, 1854. He then served in his senatorial seat until 1859. He also served as a delegate to the 1861 Peace Convention; and was a member of the 1861 and 1862 State Secession Conventions. Before retiring, Reid served as a delegate to the 1875 State Constitutional Convention. Governor David S. Reid passed away on June 19, 1891, and was buried in the Greenview Cemetery in Reidsville, North Carolina.


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.

Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction

Recent North Carolina Governors