P. B. S. PinchbackPinckney Benton Stewart Pinchback (May 10, 1837 - December 21, 1921) was the first African-American to become governor of a U.S State. Pinchback served as the Republican governor of Louisiana from December 9, 1872 to January 9, 1873.
Pinchback was born in Macon, Georgia to a white planter and his former slave. He was educated at the Gilmore school in Cincinnati, Ohio. After his father died in 1848, his mother fled with his siblings to Ohio out of fear that his paternal relatives would force his family back into slavery.
During the Civil War, Pinchback traveled to Lousiana and became the only African-American officer in the Union-controlled Lousiana Native Guards. After the war, he became active in the Republican Party and participated in Reconstruction state conventions. In 1868, Pinchback was elected as Lousiana state Senator, where he became the state Senate president pro tempore. He became lieutenant governor following the death of Oscar Dunn, the first elected African-American lieutenant governor of a U.S. State. Pinchback was elevated to the governorship upon the impeachment and removal from office of his predecessor, Republican governor Henry Clay Warmouth, for corruption.
After his governorship, Pinchback was instrumental in establishing Southern University in 1879, where he served as a member of the board of trustees. In 1885, he studied law at Straight University in New Orleans, and later moved to New York City where he was a Federal marshall and Washington, D.C where he practiced law.
Pinchback died in Washington, D.C and was interred in Metairie, Louisiana.