After graduating with a law degree from the University of Virginia, Reynolds opened a law office in St. Louis. He served as U.S. district attorney for Missouri & allied himself politically with Claiborne Jackson. Reynolds was chosen to be Jackson's running mate in the gubernatorial election of 1860 & became Missouri's Lieutenant Governor. They called the pro-Confederate legislators into session & passed an ordinance of secession for Missouri. On Jackson's death in 1862, Reynolds became governor-in-exile. After the war Reynolds went to Mexico with General Shelby, but Emperor Maximilian refused to hire the former Confederates as mercenaries. After brief employment as a counselor to Maximilian before returning to Missouri in 1868, Reynolds returned to Missouri to practice law. On March 30, 1887, Governor Reynolds fell down the north elevator shaft of the Custom House (now the "Old Post Office" in downtown St. Louis) & was killed. A note was found in his pocket explaining that he was troubled by insomnia & frequent nervousness & persistent melancholy, hallucinations & visions, although he felt he was still in sound mind. He stated that if he did anything rash, it was due to a temporary disorder of his mind.
Heloise Marie Sprague Reynolds