Alabama Governors

Hugh McVay

portrait of Alabama Governor Hugh McVay


July 17, 1837 - November 30, 1837


Hugh McVay was born in 1766 in South Carolina. He moved to Madison County, Mississippi Territory, in 1807 and represented that county in the Territorial Legislature, 1811-1818. In 1819 McVay moved to Lauderdale County, and he represented that county in the 1819 Alabama Constitutional Convention. McVay served in the Alabama House of Representatives from 1820-1825 and in the State Senate from 1825-1844.


In July 1837 Alabama Governor Clement Comer Clay was appointed to the US Senate. Hugh McVay had been elected Speaker of the Senate in 1836 and as provided for in the Alabama Constitution McVay as Senate Speaker became Acting Governor of Alabama on July 17, 1837. McVay served until November 31 (30?), 1837 when A. P. Bagby was elected Governor. McVay's short term of office was characterized by a continuation of the problems and policies of the C.C. Clay administration. The Creek and Seminole Wars and the financial situation of the state bank were the major concerns of 1837.


McVay continued to serve in the Alabama Senate until 1844 when he retired to his Lauderdale County plantation. McVay died in 1851.


Webb, Samuel L. and Margaret E. Armbrester.Alabama Governors, 2001, Mary Jane McDaniel's sketch "Hugh McVay."
Owen, Thomas, M. History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography, 1921.
Stewart, John Craig. The Governors of Alabama, 1975.