Alabama Pioneers HonoredBiographiesGenealogy Information

Biography: Charles Grandison Gunter born February 28, 1806 – photographs



(1806 NC – d. 1883 Brazil)

Montgomery County, Alabama


Charles Grandison Gunter was born in Chatham, County, North Carolina, February 28, 1806, and died in Brazil, in that village settled by him in which to promote his Colony—Linhares, Rio Doce Province, August 19, 1883. He was an extensive planter and a man of financial means. His father was a German who came to America when a young man and settled in Chatham County, N. C. where he spent the remainder of his life. His name was originally Gunther, but he changed it to Gunter on arriving in this country.

Charles Grandison Gunter 1806 (Alabama Department of Archives and History)

Charles Grandison Gunter 1806

Mr. Gunter attended the country schools of Chatham County, N. C. and took up the study of law. He was admitted to practice, and came to Alabama in 1833 with his family, settling on a plantation ten miles west of Montgomery on the east side of Pintlala Creek He became a law partner of Mr. Chisholm in the law firm of Chisholm & Gunter, but abandoned the practice soon after, becoming a planter and a financier. He represented Montgomery County in the State Legislature in 1847 and 1849. He was a Whig. He assisted in building and maintaining the Baptist and Methodist Episcopalian churches, and the Episcopalian school, Hamner Hall. He was past master of Masonry, Montgomery Lodge No. 11.

Charles Grandison Gunter
Charles Grandison Gunter

Secured the rights of property to married women in their own name

Mr. Gunter’s most outstanding contribution to the history of his state was the securing of rights of property to married women in their own name. This Act was passed by the Legislature of 1847, of which he was a member, and was one of the first of its kind in the United States and known as Gunter’s law, and was the first and strongest step in Alabama in the emancipation of women.

Mr. Gunter was one of the organizers of the Montgomery True Blues, a military company in Montgomery which has been in existence since the Indian War of 1836. He was awarded a gold star as a mark of honor in 1851 by the company.

During the War of Secession, he was captain of Co. A. of old men. His portrait hangs at the Alabama Department of Archives and History.

Mr. Gunter was one of the first of that large group of Alabamians to go to Brazil at the close of the War in 1865, and of the number who went down as members of Gunter’s Colony on the Doce River, he and his son Basil Manly were the only ones to remain. He died there and are buried in Brazil. He bought slaves and had a plantation in Brazil. He had dark brown hair, black eyes, and a dark complexion.

Basil Manly Gunter was Consular Agent of the United States to Victoria in the Province of Espirito Santo, by appointment July 11, 1889. He was at one time connected with the leading Railway System in Brazil and there amassed a fortune.

Charles Grandison Gunter is buried in Brazil.

Eliza Adams Gunter - wife of Charles Grandison Gunter
Eliza Adams Gunter – wife of Charles Grandison Gunter


He married in 1831 at Cheraw, S. C. Eliza Ann Adams, daughter of John and Isabella (McCrea) Adams of Richmond County, N. C. granddaughter of Mary (McLeod) McCrea. The McCrea, Adams and McLeod families all came from the Scotch settlement in Richmond County, NC.

His wife Eliza Adams Gunter was born May 4, 1816, and died October 10, 1860. She had auburn hair and blue eyes. The notes also say that this carte-de-viste was copied from an older photograph.


Their children were:

  1. George Thomas Gunter (b. November 24, 1832) married Adella Smith, last residence Lowndesboro, Alabama
  2. William Adams Gunter, (b. Oct 7, 1834,) A. B. LL. B. University of VA 1856 – lawyer – married Ellen Florence Poellnitz, Montgomery – had a son Charles Poellnitz Gunter, A. B. dealer in real estate and insurance (b. Feb. 11, 1865 Montgomery, Alabama
  3.  Hattie Gunter married P. H. McEachin, captain in the C. S. Army
  4.  Harris Gunter, A. B. (b. April 27, 1847) lawyer married Kate Vassar, Montgomery, Alabama
  5.  Anna Gunter, married in Brazil A. J. Dozier, Madison, Florida
  6.   Basil Manly Gunter – died in Brazil at the age of thirty-nine years
  7.  Mary Ella Gunter – married Franklin Harper Elmore, Montgomery, Alabama.



  1. Notes on back of Eliza Adams Gunter portrait at Alabama State Archives – The notes also say that this carte-de-viste was copied from an older photograph. – 1850-1859 – photographer – Carneiro and Gaspar, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  2. Notes on back of Charles G. Gunter portrait at Alabama State Archives – photographer – Carneiro and Gaspar, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
  3. History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography, Volume III
  4. The Alabama Historical Quarterly, Vol. 01, No. 02, Summer Issue 1930
  5. Find A Grave Memorial# 91990990# 42737675# 91991011# 24049965# 42737851# 42737760# 55725652# 42738157# 42738054# 92599235

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  1. […] many in Montgomery who counseled against this move. To offset this many men of the temperament of Colonel Charles Gunter who were classed as “irreconcilables” insisted on going to […]

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