This book is in our library at the First White House of the Confederacy and it is a fascinating read. Donald Collins, author makes the case for Davis’s “First Resurrection” being his Southern tour, made in 1886-1887, which began in Montgomery with he and Winnie traveling together to lay the cornerstone for the Confederate Monument.
Although it began as a single city tour, it grew to include Atlanta and Savannah. Each place he visited his public image was near adulation, as his fellow Southerners recognized him at last, as one of their most important sons.
His ‘Second Resurrection” was his death and funeral. He died at the home of a friend, Judges Fenner, in New Orleans, on his way back from visiting the plantation at Brierfield. Varina, hearing he was sick, joined him in New Orleans. You will remember that he was temporarily buried in New Orleans,with the greatest funeral the South had ever seen. Three years later his body was moved for permanent internment in the Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond. His wife, children and a grandson are all buried there.
The book ends with this assessment of Jefferson Davis: “However, Davis’s place in the sun as a Confederate hero was destined to decline yet again with the end of the Lost Cause movement, the death of the Confederate generation, the revision of Civil War and antebellum history by historians, and, in particular, from the civil rights movement as it moved from fighting legal discrimination in the courts and through state and federal legislation into an assault on the Confederacy itself and the place of African Americans in southern history.”