The Papers of Jefferson Davis
The Papers of Jefferson Davis

Photograph by William W. Washburn, 1888 National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian Institution




Early Political Career

Brackets indicate dates and entries that follow logically from information in primary sources but are not explicitly stated. 

Establishes Brierfield plantation adjacent to brother Joseph's Hurricane plantation on Davis Bend, twenty miles down the Mississippi River from Vicksburg; travels; becomes involved in local and state politics (see Davis' letter to William Allen, July 24, 1840)
December [19]
Meets Varina Banks Howell 
Chosen state Democratic presidential elector (see Davis' speech recommending John C. Calhoun, Jan. 8, 1844)
December 4
Casts electoral vote for James K. Polk
February 26
Marries eighteen-year-old Varina Banks Howell at The Briars, the home of her parents in Natchez, Mississippi
June 28
Delivers "Eulogy on the Life and Character of Andrew Jackson" at Vicksburg
October 3
Davis' mother Jane Cook Davis dies
November 4
Elected to the House of Representatives
December 8
Takes oath to uphold the Constitution (cited by his lawyers in 1868 while trying to get treason charges dismissed); seated in the House of Representatives
December 16
Votes in favor of joint resolution providing for the annexation of Texas

How to Reach Us

The Papers of Jefferson Davis
Rice University--MS 43
P.O. Box 1892
Houston, Texas 77251-1892
Phone: (713) 348-4990
Fax: (713) 348-4383