Isaac R. Hawkins as an American politician and a member of the United States House of Representatives for Tennessee's 7th congressional district. He was born on May 16, 1818 near Columbia, Tennessee in Maury County. He moved with his parents to Carroll County in 1828 and attended the common schools. He engaged in agricultural pursuits, studies law, and was admitted to the bar in 1843. He commenced practice in Huntingdon, Tennessee in Carroll County.
He served as a lieutenant during the Mexican War and then resumed the practice of law. He was a delegate from Tennessee to a peace conference held in Washington, D.C., in 1861 in an effort to devise a means to prevent the impending war. He was elected to the convention for the consideration of Federal relations. He was judge of the circuit court in 1862. He entered the Union Army as lieutenant colonel of the Seventh Regiment of the Tennessee Volunteer Cavalry in 1862. He was captured with his regiment at Union City, Tennessee in 1864 and imprisoned. He was exchanged in August 1864 and resumed active service, being in command of the Cavalry force in western Kentucky until the close of the Civil War. He was commissioned by Governor Brownlow as one of the chancellors of Tennessee in 1865 but declined to qualify.
Isaac Hawkins was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1868. Upon the readmission of Tennessee to representation, he was elected as a Unionist to the Thirty-ninth Congress and re-elected as a Republican to the Fortieth and Forty-first Congresses. He served from July 24, 1866 to March 3, 1871. During the Forty-first Congress, he was the chairman of the United States House Committee on Mileage. He died in Huntingdon, Tennessee on August 12, 1880. He was interred in the Hawkins family burial ground near Huntingdon.
This article incorporates facts obtained from the public domain Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.