E. G. PIERSON

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The History of West Virginia, Old and New Published 1923, The American Historical Society, Inc., Chicago and New York, Volume III, pg. 639-640 Clay

E. G. PIERSON is one of the leading members of the bar of Clay County, where he is engaged in the practice of his profession at Clay, the county seat, and aside from his pro- fessional activities, which have included service in public office, he has given effective service as a member of the State Senate.

Mr. Pierson was born on a farm near Elkhurst, Clay County, and is a son of William D. and Nancy (Hall) Pier- son, the former of whom was born in Nicholas County and the latter in Roane County, Virginia, now West Virginia, both having been children at the time of the removal of the respective families to Clay County. The venerable parents still reside in Clay County, they having there estab- lished themselves shortly after their marriage, and both being honored citizens who have contributed their part to civic and industrial prosperity in Clay County. They are zealous members of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and in politics, with well fortified views, the father is a stal- wart republican. Of their eight children all except one are living at the time of this writing, in 1922: D. D. is a prosperous farmer in Clay County; E. G., of this sketch, was next in order of birth; Samantha J. is the wife of J. J. Dangherty; Webster H. is associated with productive activi- ties in the oil fields of the state; Alice B. is the wife of P. S. Hart; Anna V. is the wife of John Grass; and Russell remains in the parental home.

Mr. Pierson passed his childhood and earlier youth on the home farm, and after profiting by the advantages of the public schools he pursued higher studies in Marshall Col- lege and in the West Virginia Wesleyan College. While successfully engaged in teaching in the schools of his native state he began the study of law, and in 1896 was admitted to the bar and established himself in practice at Clay, judicial center of his native county. In 1896 he was elected representative of the Ninth District in the State Senate, where he made an excellent record during his term of four years. When war was declared against Spain he en- listed as a private in Company H, Second West Virginia U. S. Volunteer Infantry, in which he was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant, the regiment having been held in reserve and not having been called to the stage of active conflict. After the close of the war Mr. Pierson engaged in the practice of law at Fayetteville, Fayette County, where he remained until 1910 and where he served out an unexpired term on the bench of the Criminal Court of the county, besides having been prosecuting attorney of the county for one term. In 1910 he was appointed state pardon attorney by Governor William E. Glasscock, was reappointed by Governor Henry D. Hatfield, and held this position until the election of Governor Jno. J. Cornwell in 1916. After retiring from the office of pardon attorney he opened a law office in the City of Charleston, and maintained the same until he was elected prosecuting attorney of Clay County in 1920. He is known as a versatile and resourceful trial lawyer and well fortified counselor, and his practice is of broad scope and representative order. He is a stal- wart republican and is influential in the local councils and campaign activities of his party.

Mr. Pierson was united in marriage to Miss Nannie P. Johnson, who graduated from Baldwin University, at Berea, Ohio, and who is supervisor of music and art in the Clay County High School, she being an exceptionally talented musician and being a valued factor in the cultural life of her home community, as well as in its social affairs. Mr. and Mrs. Pierson have two daughters: Margaret E. and Dorothy A.