Jefferson Davis

Photograph by [[Mathew Brady]], {{circa|1859}} Jefferson F. Davis (June 3, 1808December 6, 1889) was an American politician who served as the president of the Confederate States from 1861 to 1865. He represented Mississippi in the United States Senate and the House of Representatives as a member of the Democratic Party before the American Civil War. He had previously served as the United States Secretary of War from 1853 to 1857 under President Franklin Pierce.

Davis, the youngest of ten children, was born in Fairview, Kentucky. He grew up in Wilkinson County, Mississippi, and also lived in Louisiana. His eldest brother Joseph Emory Davis secured the younger Davis's appointment to the United States Military Academy. After graduating, Jefferson Davis served six years as a lieutenant in the United States Army. He fought in the Mexican–American War (1846–1848) as the colonel of a volunteer regiment. Before the American Civil War, he operated in Mississippi a large cotton plantation which his brother Joseph had given him, and owned as many as 113 slaves. Although Davis argued against secession in 1858, he believed the states had an unquestionable right to leave the Union.

Davis married Sarah Knox Taylor, daughter of general and future President Zachary Taylor, in 1835, when he was 27 years old. They were both soon stricken with malaria, and Sarah died after three months of marriage. Davis recovered slowly and suffered from recurring bouts of illness throughout his life. At the age of 36, Davis married again, to 18-year-old Varina Howell, a native of Natchez, Mississippi. They had six children.

During the American Civil War, Davis guided Confederate policy and served as its commander in chief. When the Confederacy was defeated in 1865, Davis was captured, accused of treason, and imprisoned at Fort Monroe in Hampton, Virginia. He was never tried and was released after two years. Davis's legacy is intertwined with his role as President of the Confederacy. Immediately after the war, he was often blamed for the Confederacy's loss. After he was released, he was seen as a man who suffered unjustly for his commitment to the South, becoming a hero of the pseudohistorical Lost Cause of the Confederacy during the post-Reconstruction period. In the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, his legacy as Confederate leader was celebrated and memorialized in the South. In the twenty-first century, he is frequently criticized as a supporter of slavery and racism, and a number of the memorials created in his honor throughout the country have been removed. Provided by Wikipedia
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1
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York, N.Y. : Da Capo Press, 1990

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2
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York : Thomas Yoseloff, 1958

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3
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Baltimore, Printed by J. Murphy & Co., 1860

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4
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York : Collier Books, 1961

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5
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Jackson, Mississippi : Printed for the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, 1923

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6
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
[New York] : [AMS Press], 1973

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7
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York, N.Y. : Da Capo Press, 1990

Book
8
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York : Harcourt, Brace & World, 1966
1st ed.

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9
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Baltimore, Printed by J. Murphy & Co., 1861

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10
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York : Modern Library, 2004
Modern Library pbk. ed.

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11
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
New York : D. Appleton, 1881

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12
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
[Hillsboro, Tex.] : Hill Junior College Press, 1966
[First edition].

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13
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
[Richmond] : Richmond Enquirer Print, 1863

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14
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Gloucester, Mass. : Peter Smith, 1971

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15
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Baltimore, Printed by J. Murphy & Co., 1860

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17
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Richmond : Ritchie & Dunnavant, 1862

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18

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19
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Baltimore : Printed by J. Murphy & Co., 1859

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20
by Davis, Jefferson, 1808-1889
Richmond : R.M. Smith, 1864

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