FRANKFORT, Ky. — For more than 80 years, a statue of Jefferson Davis has stood in the Kentucky Capitol Rotunda, a place normally used to honor former elected officials who served their state. A son of Kentucky, Davis never served an elected office in the commonwealth. Still, the only President of the Confederacy stands in a place of honor in the Capitol Rotunda.
Four governors before Andy Beshear, including Beshear's father, have called for the removal of the statue. It wasn't until Friday, June 12, 2020, in an 11-1 vote, a Kentucky Commission voted to remove the statue from the Capitol rotunda.
We wanted to know more about who Jefferson Davis and why for decades so many have called for the removal of his statues around the nation.
According to biography.com, Jefferson Finis Davis was born on June 3, 1808, in Fairview, Kentucky which is in Christian County. Davis was one of 10 children born into a military family, his birth took place just 100 miles from and eight months earlier than President Abraham Lincoln. Davis' father and uncles were soldiers in the American Revolutionary War, and three of his older brothers fought in the War of 1812.
Though born in Kentucky, Davis primarily grew up on the Rosemont Plantation near Woodville, Mississippi, eventually returning to Kentucky to attend boarding school in Bardstown. After completing his boarding school education, Davis enrolled at Jefferson College in Mississippi, later transferring to Transylvania University in Kentucky, which was Kentucky's first college, according to its website. Davis is listed as a notable student.
Davis was a slaveholder and firmly believed in the importance of the institution of slavery for the South.
In 1845 Davis, a Democrat, was elected to the U.S. House of Representative. A year later, in 1846, he resigned from his seat in Congress to serve in the Mexican-American War as a colonel in command of the First Mississippi volunteers, according to Encyclopedia Britannica's website.
He was elected President Of Confederate States on February 18, 1861 and held the position until May 10, 1865.
After the Civil War ended, Jefferson Davis was captured in Irwin County, Georgia and became a prisoner at Ft. Monroe on May 19, 1865. He was tried and found guilty of treason. After two years, he was released from prison for $100,000 bail. He died at 81 years of age in New Orleans, according to history.net.
PHOTOS | Prepping for the removal of Jefferson Davis statue at Kentucky state Capitol
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