Jefferson Davis

From FranaWiki

Jefferson "Jeff" Davis (1862-1913) was a U.S. Senator and the twentieth governor of the State of Arkansas, serving from January 8, 1901, to January 8, 1907.

Davis was born on May 6, 1862, near Richmond, in Little River County, Arkansas. He attended the public schools of Russellville, Arkansas, before attending Vanderbilt University. Davis graduated in 1884. He studied the law before returning to Russellville to hang out his shingle. From 1892 to 1896 Davis served as prosecuting attorney for the Fifth Judicial District. From 1898 to 1901 he served as Arkansas Attorney General. Running as a Democrat, Davis became governor of the state in 1901. He served until 1907, when he was elected a U.S. Senator. Davis died in office six years later.

Davis is especially remembered for his role in establishing Jim Crow laws throughout the state. Davis also coined the term "redneck" to differentiate hard-working Arkansas farmers from establishment bankers and politicians.

Davis died on January 13, 1913, in Little Rock. He is interred at local Mount Holly Cemetery.


  • Paulette Walker and Alan Paulson, Historic Pulaski County: Arkansas (Arcadia Publishing, 1999), 29.

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