A New President for a New Country
One hundred and fifty years ago today, President Jefferson Davis was elected president of the Confederate States of America. The newly-found country, by mid-February, consisted of seven states: South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Florida, Texas, and Louisiana. This number would grow to be eleven.
Davis had previously served as Secretary of War under President Pierce and as a U.S. senator for Mississippi. He resigned his senate seat at the onset of the Civil War, warning his constituents of the perils to come. When it seemed that war was inevitable, the Confederacy appointed Davis as their leader, and reluctantly, he accepted.
The election was the beginning of the end for President Davis. In the years to come, he would see his country suffer, he would lose a son, he would be incarcerated and humiliated, and he’d become an exile and a “traitor.”