Beauvoir - the final home of Jefferson Davis

vmicraig

Sergeant
Joined
Mar 12, 2018
Location
Mobile, AL
I made a quick visit to Beauvoir today in Biloxi, MS to see the only Confederate Presidential Library and Davis' final homestead. Twas very hot and I had the place pretty much to myself, except for the small crowd that magically showed up just in time for the mansion visit. The library and museum were quite empty and I had time to take plenty of pics, as well as inside the small but ornate summer home. If you ever get down to Biloxi, be sure to stop by, as all ticket sales and donation help keep Beauvoir, privately owned and maintained by the SCV, open.

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Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Location
Southwest Mississippi
Thank you for such a wonderful tour !
I really enjoyed that .

I'm so glad to see many of the artifacts that a lot of us thought were gone forever
after Hurricane Katrina ... have been found and restored.

The first time I visited Beauvoir was as a Young child during August 1969.
One week later, Hurricane Camille devastated the Gulf Coast.

Even back then, Beauvoir survived while modern structures were demolished by the elements.
That is a very well built structure !

Useless fact:

As massive as the home is , Beauvoir was originally built as a summer "beach house" .
 
Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Location
Southwest Mississippi
With as many times as the house has been devastated by hurricanes, you have got to wonder how much of the house is original but that said, it’s still a great place to visit and well worth the stop.
Great question.

The core of the original home has never lost it's structural integrity.

No doubt wind and waves have destroyed the porches and such over the centuries, but most of Beauvoir is original.

I'm really glad President Davis' catafalque has been restored.

( from what I remember, half of it was found in the little bayou behind Beauvoir,
and other parts were eventually found 30 miles north of the
coast) .
 
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Booklady

Sergeant
Joined
Mar 19, 2017
Location
New England
When I toured it in2009, the guide said the wide, length-wise floorboards in the main hallway were a large part of the reason the home survived Katrina. It was said that the floodwaters surged about three or four feet high through the first floor, requiring the furniture to have to be restored, but the house held together because of those floorboards. Always found that fascinating.

The home is beautifully maintained. Thanks for the lovely photos.
 

DixieRifles

Captain
Member of the Year
Regtl. Staff Shiloh 2020
Joined
Mar 22, 2009
Location
Collierville, TN
The tour of the mansion was so interesting in the design features. It was very interesting to hear how they striped the white paint off the doors after Katrina and discovered the doors were originally painted to simulate the wood grain of oak(I think).

Thanks for posting the great photos.

My great-granfather was buried there in 1923— with wrong regiment on his headstone. (My 1st cuz posing with headstone.)


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Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Location
Southwest Mississippi
Actually, the staff states it is a rebuilt, 500 gallon wood and brink cistern, not a dovecote. The original was destroyed by Katrina, of course, so this one is a retro. It collected rainwater from the roof
Interesting !

Whatever it is, there's no doubt it's a reconstruction.

I do remember after much of this house was devastated by Hurricane Katrina, the Mississippi Department of Archives & History along with the owners ( Sons of Confederate Veterans) both spent many years of research and quite a bit of money to restore Beauvoir into it's original appearance.

That intense research revealed much about the original house that had been forgotten over the years.
 

DixieRifles

Captain
Member of the Year
Regtl. Staff Shiloh 2020
Joined
Mar 22, 2009
Location
Collierville, TN
spent many years of research and quite a bit of money to restore Beauvoir into it's original appearance.
They sold pieces of slate shingles that were recovered. I bought a couple.
During my tour of the mansion, the guide said they researched to find the original quarry used back in the early 1800’s. They replaced the shingles with the original material.

Photo of my piece of Shingle from Beauvoir. I think one or both of those notches on the edge are nail holes.

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Joined
Sep 28, 2013
Location
Southwest Mississippi
they researched to find the original quarry used back in the early 1800’s.
They discovered all kinds of previously unknown facts about the house & grounds.

It seems Mrs. Davis had a very elaborate herb garden a few steps from the back veranda.

Using sketches from an old journal, this garden was replanted during the restoration.
 
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