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Washington BrotherhoodPolitics, Social Life, and the Coming of the Civil War$
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Rachel A. Shelden

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781469610856

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9781469610863_Shelden

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Like Taking a Last Leave of a Brother: The Washington Community Faces the Secession Crisis

Like Taking a Last Leave of a Brother: The Washington Community Faces the Secession Crisis

Chapter:
(p.167) Chapter Seven Like Taking a Last Leave of a Brother: The Washington Community Faces the Secession Crisis
Source:
Washington Brotherhood
Author(s):

Rachel A. Shelden

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469610856.003.0009

This chapter illustrates a heartbreaking scene at Jefferson and Varina Davis's Washington residence. Friends of the Mississippi couple, including both Northerners and Southerners, lingered in the house to bid their sad goodbyes to the senator and his wife. Less than two weeks earlier Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi had all joined South Carolina in declaring secession from the United States. The Davises were in the midst of joining many of their Southern colleagues in leaving Washington. Even the most casual observer could tell that the senator and his wife were not at all prepared to go. Little of the packing had been done, and their three little children scampered around the house with the family's two pets—a parrot and a Newfoundland dog.

Keywords:   Varina Davis, Washington residence, Mississippi couple, Northerners, Southerners, secession

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