Alabama Academy of Honor


Prime Francis Osborn III

The following biographical sketch was compiled at the time of induction into the Academy in 1982.



Prime Francis Osborn III was born July 18, 1915 in Greensboro. He earned the juris docorate degree, 1939, University of Alabama, and served as secretary to the Registrar while a student, 1932-1939. He was admitted to the Alabama Bar, 1939, the Kentucky Bar, 1952, and the North Acolina Bar, 1959. He served as Assistant Attorney General, State of Alabama, 1939-1941. He entered the U.S. Army, Artilley, as a second lieutenant, 1941; served in the Pacific Theatre and was awarded the American Theatre Medal, Victory Medal, American Defense Medal, Pacific Theatre Medal with two stars, Army Commendation Medal and Bronze Star. He graduated from the Command and General Staff School U.S. Army, 1942.

He served as attorney with Gulf, Mobile and Ohio Railroad at Mobile, 1946-51; General Solicitor, Louisville and Nashville Railroad at Louisville, Kentucky, 1951-51; vice president and general counsel, Atlantic Coast Line Railroad Company, Wilmington, North Carolina and Jacksonville, Florida, 1957-67; vice president-law, Seaboard Coast Line Industries, Jacksonville, 1970-82; Louisville and Nashville Railroad since 1973; and president and chairman of the Board of the Seaboard Coast Line and the Louisville and Nashville Railroads since 1976, and Director, vice president or president of several small connecting railroads.

He served as a director of several concerns in Florida and Kentucky: Alico Land Development Company, Labelle, Florida, Atlantic Land and Improvement Company, Jacksonville, Houston-McCord Realty Company, Louisville, Nonen Realty Company, Louisville, and the First National Bank, Louisville.

He served as a member of the Board of Visitors or as Trustee of: Sweet Briar College, Berry College Protestant Theoogical Seminary in Virginia, and Jacksonville University. He was especially active with the Boy Scouts of America where he served both locally in Alabama and in Florida and Kentucky, and was a member of the Regional Executive Committee, Southeastern Region and the National Railroad Committee on Scouting.

He married Grace Hambrick August 30, 1939 and they had two children: Prime Francis III and Mary Anne. Mr. Osborn is now deceased.