This week someone sent us and we circulated via email a wonderful photo of Jefferson Davis’s casket being taken from the train station to the Capitol building where he lay in state on the way from New Orleans to Richmond. Then one of our White House Association Board members sent us an account from the L&N Magazine, 1955 as follows:
“As the funeral train arrived in Montgomery and stopped near Molton Street shortly after six a.m., on May 29, a violent rainstorm burst over the city – weather relented and at 8:30 that morning the funeral cortege moved to the capitol building as scheduled. Six black horses drew the platform bearing the casket, and a covering of purple and gold lent a colorful note to the otherwise somber scene. En route up Dexter Avenue, two columns of infantry marched alongside. Somewhere, a cannon fired.”
The article then describes the scene inside the Capitol. “The casket was placed in front of the bench in the supreme court room. Over the right exit was the word ‘Monterrey’ and over the left, ‘Buena Vista,’ names of two famous battles in which Jefferson Davis had so gallantly figured before the days of the ‘Lost Cause’. “
“All businesses and schools closed, and church bells tolled during the procession to and from the capitol. In final tribute, thousands of people of Montgomery, including many ex-solders and school children, filed by the casket.”
At 12:20 p.m., about an hour and 20 minutes late, the funeral train departed over the Western Railway of Alabama…”
The photo is now of our website, www.firstwhitehouse.org. /Click the heading Jefferson Davis, and then Jefferson Davis’s death to see it.