Remembering Jefferson Davis' 200th Birthday
Calvin E. Johnson, Jr.
Is the "War Between the States" still taught in our schools?
The Jefferson Davis State Historic Site in Fairview, Kentucky marks the spot where Jefferson Davis was born on June 3, 1808. Plans are underway to celebrate Davis' 200th birthday on June 7th 8th, there, in the shadow of a 351-foot monument to Davis.
Earlier, an official dedication and grand opening of "Jefferson Davis Park" took place at beautiful Clark County, Oregon on Sunday, April 27, 2008. This project was made possible by the local Sons of Confederate Veterans and United Daughters of the Confederacy. http://JeffersonDavisPark.org
Many 200th birthday tributes are planned for Davis.....
But, what do our children know about Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) and Jefferson Davis (1808-1889?) These men were born nearly 100 miles of each other in Kentucky, served as War Between the States presidents and America will remember the 200th birthday of both men soon.
A news reporter wrote that the 200th birthday commemoration for Abraham Lincoln will take place on February 12, 2009, but many people would rather forget the bicentennial birthday of Jefferson Davis on June 3, 2008.
Why the negative slant on Jefferson Davis?
The Sons of Confederate Veterans are sending a positive message by proclaiming 2008 as the "Year of Davis" www.scv.org...And last February, Bertram Hayes-Davis, the great-great grandson of Jefferson Davis, recreated the 1861 swearing-in ceremony of his grandfather as Confederate President in Montgomery, Alabama. Bertram Davis told reporters:
"I stand here representing a family that is very proud of their ancestor."
The Davis event of the year might be the June 3, 2008 reopening of "Beauvoir" the last home of Jefferson Davis and his family. The Davis home was severely damaged by Hurricane Katrina in 2005. Read more about Jefferson Davis and his Mississippi Gulf Coast home at: www.beauvoir.org. The birthday festivities begin at 10 AM.
Did you know that Jefferson Davis adopted a black child, Jim Limber, as his son? The Sons of Confederate Veterans are planning a Davis Memorial Statue, in Virginia, depicting the forgotten story of the Jefferson Davis family and Jim Limber.
Sons of Confederate Veterans Commander-In-Chief Christopher Sullivan said of this project "This will be our token of gratitude for what Jefferson Davis did and what he stood for."
Please ask your local newspaper, radio and TV for equal-time in covering the birthday of Jefferson Davis. Our American Media will no doubt cover the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln next February 12th but shouldn't they also cover the Davis birthday of June 3rd? This seems to me the "Fair and Balanced" thing to do as the USA remembers two American presidents.
Who was Jefferson Davis?
Jefferson Davis was born on June 3, 1808, in Fairview, Christian County, Kentucky that would become Todd County.
Davis' father, Samuel Emory Davis, served in the Revolutionary War and participated in the siege of Savannah. Three of Jeff's older brothers served in the War of 1812, two under General Andrew Jackson. His father was from Georgia and mother Jane Cook Davis, daughter of a noted Baptist Preacher, was from North Carolina.
Jefferson Davis, who would become the first and only President of the Confederate States of America, was a strong Unionist and a strong defender of the United States Constitution. Our founding Fathers believed in the sovereignty of the states and do did Jefferson Davis.
At the young age of 16, Jefferson Davis received an appointment to the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York by President Monroe. He graduated in 1828 with the commission of 2nd Lieutenant.
Jefferson Davis fought valiantly in the War with Mexico, served as the United States Senator from Mississippi, served as Secretary of War under President Franklin Pierce and was the first to suggest the transcontinental railroad to link the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
Jefferson Davis' last marriage is said to have been a good one to Varina, who gave her husband three sons and two daughters (Jefferson Joseph, Billy, Margaret and Winnie.) Joseph was killed in an accidental fall at the Confederate White House in Richmond, Virginia in 1864, and an abused black child named Jim Limber was adopted by the Davis family.
Jefferson Davis died in New Orleans, Louisiana in December 1889, and the New York Times ran a 2,000 word tribute to the funeral of Davis on December 12, 1889. The following is a small part of the news report from New Orleans, Louisiana:
"He suffered many and grievous wrongs. Suffered mostly for the sake of others, and those others will remember him and his unflinching fidelity with deep gratitude while the Potomac seeks the Chesapeake or the Mississippi sweeps by Briarfield on its way to the Mexican Sea."
A birthday ceremony will be performed on June 7, 2008, at 10 AM at the grave of Jefferson Davis at Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond, Virginia.
Let's remember all those who helped make America great!!