23. April 2013 · Comments Off on Mississippi Discoveries 1: Beauvoir & the Jefferson Davis “Presidential” Library · Categories: Uncategorized · Tags: , , , , , , ,
The newly-rebuilt Jefferson Davis Presidential Library in Biloxi, MS.

The newly-rebuilt Jefferson Davis Presidential Library in Biloxi, MS. It opened on March 16, 2013. It has a library, restoration center, and gift shop.

Yipee! A new state to discover!

At the end of March, Dave and I made a trip to Keesler AFB in Biloxi, MS for Dave’s laser-eye surgery. We spent about 5 days in the area; before his procedure, we were able to do a little bit of sightseeing. Besides the numerous casinos, there are a couple of neat tourist attractions that we enjoyed.

First on our list was to pay a visit to Beauvoir, which was Jefferson Davis’ home after the Civil War. He was living as a disenfranchised not-really-citizen at the time he acquired this house, because he had some of his rights stripped as part of his treason indictment. In fact, he was nearly broke when he came to Beauvoir as a house guest in 1877. The country at the time was very divided on his right to remain in the U.S., but in the deep south he was left alone. On the grounds stands the Jefferson Davis “Presidential” Library**, which operates in the same way as other presidential libraries around the country. The property is managed by the Sons of Confederate Veterans.

**Being that the United States never formally recognized the Confederate States of America as a┬ásovereign┬ástate, one could argue that Jefferson Davis wasn’t really president of anything. But I’m not going to get too deep into that argument.

Beauvoir itself. An understated home with a great view.

Beauvoir itself. An understated home with a great view. There were many more trees before Katrina.

The grounds took a beating during Hurricane Katrina in August 2005. You can see a picture of the house right after the storm in this CNN Article. The library was destroyed, and priceless artifacts were blown all over the place. It took over 2 years to restore the home, and it was able to reopen in summer 2008.

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