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ALS: "Jefferson Davis" as U.S. Senator from Mississippi, 1p, 5x8. Washington, D.C. 1860 December 1. To Major J.G. Reynolds in full: "Permit me to present Lt. Geo W. Collier U.S. Marine's and to commend him to your kind consideration, as a young gentleman of high character and manly bearing. He has been the architect of his own fortune and has manifested qualities which assure me he will prove congenial to you; and that his future course in your corp will be such as to make any attentions you may show him in the commencement of his professional career, a cause of gratification to you hereafter...." Jefferson Davis had served as President Franklin Pierce's Secretary of War (1854-1857) and most probably came into much contact with military personnel then and after his service as a result of that position. At the time of this letter he had returned to the Senate (1857-1861), where he became a defender of the South and American slavery, advocating the institution as an economic necessity. In January 1861, when his state of Mississippi followed South Carolina in seceding, he left the Senate. On February 18, 1861, he was chosen by the provisional congress as President of the Confederacy. He was later elected by popular vote and inaugurated at Richmond, Virginia on February 22, 1862. Davis continued as the first and only President of the Confederacy until being captured and imprisoned by Union forces on May 10, 1865. He remained incarcerated at Fort Monroe, Virginia until 1867 when he was released on bond. Because of legal technicalities, Davis was never brought to trial for treason and his case was dropped in December 1868. While his home state wanted to return him to the U.S. Senate, Davis, his health broken by his confinement, spent the remainder of his life speaking, writing and publishing his memoirs. Lightly stained, soiled and creased. Overall, fine condition.

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Born: June 3, 1808 in Fairview, Kentucky
Died: December 6, 1889 in New Orleans, Louisiana

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