Jefferson Davis’ Birthday in Mississippi

Jefferson Davis’ Birthday is a holiday that’s observed on Memorial Day in Mississippi—which places it on the last Monday in the month of May. In other southern U.S. states, this holiday is observed on different days. For example, in Florida, it’s observed on June 3rd, and in Alabama, it’s observed on the first Monday in June.

This day commemorates the birthday of Confederate President Jefferson Davis, who led the Confederate U.S. states in a civil war against the states that remained loyal to the federal Union of the U.S. in order to preserve states’ rights to continue with the institution of slavery.

The History Of Jefferson Davis’ Birthday

Jefferson Davis was born on June 3, 1808, in Kentucky and was named after former U.S. President Thomas Jefferson. He went on to receive his education at West Point before joining the army. He eventually became elected to the House of Representatives in 1845.

In 1855, Davis resigned his seat in Congress and served in the Mexican-American War as a colonel in command of the First Mississippi Volunteers. After the war, he returned to politics and ended up representing the state of Mississippi in the U.S. Senate.

During the U.S. Civil War, he was elected President of the Confederacy. After the war, he was captured and accused of committing an act of treason against the United States. He served only a two-year sentence in Fort Monroe in Hampton, Virginia, however. He was never tried and was eventually released.

Observing Jefferson Davis’ Birthday

In Mississippi, this holiday is observed with closed state offices, but federal offices such as banks and the U.S. post office remain open. This holiday has become somewhat controversial over the last few years because Jefferson Davis and the Confederate army were involved in the violent rebellion against the U.S. known as the Civil War. Regardless, it’s still observed in Mississippi, Alabama, Kentucky, and Florida.

Where is it celebrated?
United States (Local observance) - Mississippi
When is it?
This year (2024)
May 27 Monday
Next year (2025)
May 26 Monday
Last year (2023)
May 29 Monday