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Bill Thayer

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 [decorative delimiter] Class of 1828

Vol. I

(Born Ky.)

Jefferson Davis

(Ap'd Mis.)


Jefferson Finis Davis: Born Jun. 3, 1808, Christian County, KY.

Military History. — Cadet at the Military Academy, Sep. 1, 1824, to July 1, 1828, when he was graduated and promoted in the Army to

Bvt. Second Lieut. of Infantry, July 1, 1828.

Second Lieut., 1st Infantry, July 1, 1828.

Served: on frontier duty at Ft. Crawford, Wis., 1829, — Ft. Winnebago, Wis., 1829‑31, — Yellow River (superintending Sawmill), 1831, — Ft. Crawford, Wis., 1831, Dubuque Mines, Io., 1831‑32, — Rock Island, Ill., 1832, — Jefferson Barracks, Mo., 1832, — and Ft. Crawford, Wis., 1832‑33; as Adjutant, 1st Dragoons, at Regimental headquarters,

(First Lieut., 1st Dragoons, Mar. 4, 1833)

Aug. 30, 1833, to Feb. 5, 1834; on frontier duty at Ft. Gibson, I. T., 1834, — Expedition to Tow‑e‑ash Villages, 1834, — and Ft. Gibson, I. T., 1834; and on leave of absence, 1834‑35.

Resigned, June 30, 1835.​a

Civil History. — Presidential Elector of the State of Mississippi, 1844. Member of the U. S. House of Representatives from Mississippi, 1845‑46. Planter, Warren County, Mis., 1835‑46.

Military History. — Served in the War with Mexico, 1846‑47, as

Colonel, 1st Reg. Mississippi Volunteers (Rifles), July 18, 1846,

being engaged in the Battle of Monterey, Sep. 21‑23, 1846, and as Member of Commission for arranging the terms of capitulation of the place, — and Battle of Buena Vista, Feb. 22‑23, 1847, where he was severely wounded.

Disbanded, July 12, 1847.

Re-appointed in the United States Army with the rank of

Brig-General, U. S. Army, May 17, 1847: Declined.

Civil History. — Member of the U. S. Senate from Mississippi, 1847‑51, and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Military Affairs, 1849‑51. Secretary of War of the United States, Mar. 8, 1853, to Mar. 4, 1857. Member of the U. S. Senate from Mississippi, and Chairman of the Senate Committee on Military Affairs, Mar. 4, 1857, to Jan. 14, 1861. President of the Commission created by Act of June 1, 1860, to examine into the Organization, System of Discipline, and Course of Instruction at the U. S. Military Academy, July 18 to Dec. 13, 1860.

Joined in the Rebellion of 1861‑66 against the United States.​b

Civil History. — President of Life Insurance Company, Memphis, Ten., 1878. Farmer, Beauvoir, Mis., 1879‑89. Author of "Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government," 1881.

Died, Dec. 6, 1889, at New Orleans, La.: Aged 82.

Buried, Hollywood Cemetery, Richmond, VA.

Thayer's Notes:

a For Davis's Northwestern career, see Milo Quaife in Journal of the Illinois State Historical Society, Vol. 16, No. 1/2, pp1‑19.

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b As with others who served the Confederacy, Cullum's Register omits his war record: he was its President. Many websites cover his career in full: among them, reprodu­cing the extended biographical sketch in Vol. I of Confederate Military History.

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Page updated: 18 Feb 13