Jefferson Davis-Birth

Jefferson Davis was born on June 3, 1808, a little over six months before the birth of his great adversary Abraham Lincoln, in Christian County Kentucky.  His parents were Samuel and Jane Davis.  He was the youngest of ten children, and, his mother being in her 49th year, his parents gave him the middle name Finis in the expectation, or hope perhaps, that he would be the last of their children.

His father had fought in the Revolution, a fact that Jefferson Davis always took pride in.  The family moved to Louisiana in 1810, and then in 1811 in Mississippi.  With the help of his oldest son Joseph, already an established planter and lawyer in Mississippi, Samuel Davis became a prosperous planter in Mississippi, although in 1820 his fortunes began to decline.

His father made certain that Davis was well-educated by the standards of the day, as will be detailed in a future post on the education of Jefferson Davis.  One anecdote Davis told about his father involved Jefferson running away from school.  His father said that was fine but that he would have to pick cotton with the field hands.  After two days of that Jefferson decided that school wasn’t so bad after all, a conclusion his father intended he would reach.  Davis was shattered when his father died when he was 16, but his eldest brother Joseph quickly became a second father for Jefferson, a fact that Jefferson acknowledge gratefully throughout his life.  The mother of Davis would live until 1845, and he cherished her in life and her memory after death.  Davis, unlike Lincoln, was blessed with a happy home life as a child, and all his life was extremely close to his siblings.

Published in: on February 16, 2010 at 6:20 am  Comments Off on Jefferson Davis-Birth  
Tags: , ,
%d bloggers like this: