When it comes to US leaders, the most reviled person on that list might just be Jefferson Davis. Born in a log cabin in 1808, Davis would grow up in Mississippi on a small farm. He was known as an avid hunter and worked hard at his studies. He attended West Point and even served in the US military until 1835. As the country moved toward the Civil War, however, Davis would be installed as the President of the Confederate States of America and helm a war against the North for slavery and state’s rights – a war he would eventually lose.
1. A Strong Politician
Jefferson Davis also served in the US House of Representatives for about 1 year. He was elected in 1845 and quickly became famous for his speeches about the rights of states. He would only serve 1 year because he decided to resign his seat in Congress so he could serve in the military once again. He would then become a US Senator have being appointed to a vacant seat by the Governor of Mississippi.
2. A Reluctant President
It would be the state of Alabama that would vote to make Jefferson Davis the President of the Confederate States in 1861. What many people don’t realize about Davis is that he didn’t believe that states should be seceding from the Union. He served as President because he felt it was his duty due to his beliefs in state’s rights, but his hope was that war could still be avoided if he could convince Lincoln to let the South go peacefully. It wasn’t going to happen.
3. Never Give Up
Davis actually refused to surrender after General Lee signed the paperwork in Appomattox. A month later he attempted to gather forces against the Union, but there was little support for it. Everyone was done with war. In 1865 Davis would be captured and eventually serve two years in prison. After getting out, he would wind up selling insurance.
Jefferson Davis almost became a Senator after the Civil War, but his election was refused because of the oath he took to the Confederacy. It invalidated his US citizenship and he could not serve. Named after Thomas Jefferson, Davis may just be one of the most interesting figures in US history.