Littleton Owens represented Princess Anne County in the House of Delegates from 1879 to 1882. He was born free in the county where members of his family had lived as free people for generations. In 1864 he enlisted in the 2d Regiment U.S. Colored Cavalry. The regiment participated in many battles around and during the American Civil War (1861–1865). After the war Owens served as a justice of the peace and was appointed an assistant keeper of the Cape Henry Lighthouse. He was elected in 1879 to a two-year term in the House of Delegates where he allied himself with the new biracial Readjuster Party. He was reelected, and unsuccessfully sought to create an asylum for African Americans who were blind, deaf, and dumb. After losing a bid for a third term he worked in the navy yard in Gosport, at Portsmouth. In August 1889 Owens killed a man he believed was having an affair with his wife. He was arrested, convicted, and sentenced to eighteen years in the state penitentiary. In 1893 the governor pardoned him because of his deteriorating health. Owens died of pneumonia on March 11, 1894, and was buried in the Sergeant March Corprew Family Cemetery in Norfolk County.