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Southern Historical Society Papers, Volume 36. (ed. Reverend J. William Jones), chapter 1.7 (search)
. On his recovery, Mr. Davis made a tour of the West Indies; thence paid a long visit to his old friends in Washington and made many new and useful ones, who were loyal to him until the end. Then he settled in Mississippi, by his brother's advice, becoming a planter in Warren County, Miss., but devoting really more attention to reading law and managing local politics. The latter proved the more congenial and successful. He was elected to the Legislature in 1842; was Elector for Polk and Dallas two years later, and gained high repute as a debater in a tilt with the famous Sergeant S. Prentiss. In February, 1845, he married Miss Varina Banks Howell, daughter of Colonel William Burr Howell, native of New Jersey, who had moved to Mississippi and wedded the daughter of the Virginia settler. This marriage was a most congenial and helpful one to the already rising young statesman. No woman of her day proved a more potent factor in the semisocial and semipolitical government at Washi