John W. Ellis served as Governor of North Carolina from 1859 to 1861. Originally noted for his work on internal improvements such as improving roads and the state educational system, his second term was marked by the ongoing secession crisis. However, he was in poor health and passed away shortly after he led North Carolina to join the Confederacy. As speaker of the Senate, Henry Toole Clark succeeded Ellis as Governor until the following election. These obituaries illustrate the anxiety that North Carolinians felt surrounding the loss of a trusted leader at such an unstable time.
Obituary for Governor Ellis from The Weekly Raleigh Register 10 July 1861.
Obituary for Governor Ellis from The Semi-Weekly Standard 13 July 1861.
Obituary for Governor Ellis from The Semi-Weekly Raleigh Register 13 July 1861.