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BULLOCK, Gen. Robert
Transcribed from: The History of Florida: Past & Present, The Lewis Publishing Co., Vol.
Presented by Nancy Rayburn
II, page 318, 1923.
BULLOCK, General ROBERT was one of Florida's most distinguished public men, representing
the North Carolina branch of this famous family. He came to Florida about the time it
entered the Union, and served the state as a lawyer, soldier, judge and congressman until
practically the closing days of his life.
General BULLOCK was born in North Carolina, December 8, 1828. His father was RICHARD BULLOCK
and his mother's maiden name was PANNELL, both natives of North Carolina. ROBERT BULLOCK
was educated under the direction of Professor CAM MITCHELL, and his early years were spent
in teaching. Coming to Florida in 1844, at the age of sixteen, he located in Marion County,
and in 1849 was elected circuit clerk of that county, holding the office six years. In
1856 Governor Brown commissioned him to organize a company of mounted volunteers, of which
he became captain, and he was on duty in the field for eighteen months protecting the border
settlements from Indians. On his return to Ocala he studied law in the office of St. George
Rogers, and was admitted to the bar and began practice shortly before the outbreak of the
war between the states.
At the beginning of the war Governor Milton commissioned him to raise a company, which became
part of the Seventh Florida Regiment. He was elected lieutenant-colonel of the regiment.
For a time he was located at Smyrna, and after the organization of the Seventh Florida
Regiment he went to Tennessee with the command and served in the Kentucky campaign under
Gen. KIRBY SMITH, participating in the battle of Richmond. In 1862 he was promoted to colonel.
He participated in the Tullahoma campaign and the battle of Chickamauga and at Missionary
Ridge was captured and sent as a prisoner of war to Johnston's Island in Lake Erie, where
he remained from November 1, 1863, to March, 1864. On being exchanged he resumed the
command of his regiment, and at the battle of Resaca, after General Finley was wounded, he
was made brigade commander, and was confirmed with the rank of brigadier-general in spite of
the protests of senior colonels of the regiment. As brigade commander he was in the battles
of Kennesaw Mountain, Dallas, Peachtree Creek, at Atlanta on July 22, and was severely wounded
in the battle of Utoy Creek. He was with Gen. N. B. FORREST at Murfreesboro and was wounded
there in December, 1864, being disabled for further field duty. On recovering he resumed
his law practice, and was appointed judge of the Circuit Court. From this office he was
removed during the reconstruction days of 1868.
In the years following the war, while attending to an extensive law practice, he was repeatedly
honored with evidences of public esteem. In 1872 he was nominated by the democratic convention
for lieutenant-governor, was a presidential elector in the Tilden campaign of 1876, and in
1880 was elected clerk of the Circuit Court, filling that office eight years, In 1888 he was
elected to congress, and represented the Florida District in the Fifty-first and Fifty-second
congresses. General BULLOCK retired from public life in 1892, and, locating at Lake Weir,
he devoted himself to the management of his extensive orange and lemon groves until the
property was almost destroyed in the freeze of 1895. In that year he returned to Ocala, and
upon the death of Jude Hill was appointed to fill his unexpired term as judge of the Fifth
Judicial District. At the next election he was chosen to this office for a four year term,
later was mayor and postmaster at Ocala.
General BULLOCK died at Ocala August 7, 1905. In May, 1852, he married AMANDA L. WATERMAN,
of Ocala, and their marriage companionship was not broken for more than half a century. She
died in 1904. Of the thirteen children born to their marriage six reached mature age, including
Judge W. S. BULLOCK, R. B. BULLOCK, B. F. BULLOCK, Mrs. MARIE E. WRIGHT, Mrs. HATTIE WRIGHT
and Mrs. LORETTA BIRDSEY.
This page created August 22, 2010
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