Nothing fills me with deeper sadness than to see a Southern man apologizing for the defense we made of our inheritance. Our cause was so just, so sacred, that had I known all that has come to pass, had I known what was to be inflicted upon me, all that my country was to suffer, all that our posterity was to endure, I would do it all over again.

— Jefferson Davis

The most delighting Jefferson Davis quotes that will activate your desire to change

The principle for which we contend is bound to reassert itself, though it may be at another time and in another form.


Truthfulness is a cornerstone in character, and if it be not firmly laid in youth, there will ever after be a weak spot in the foundation.


The war...must go on till the last man of this generation falls in his tracks...unless you acknowledge our right to self-government. We are not fighting for slavery. We are fighting for Independence,and that, or extermination, we WILL have.


My own convictions as to negro slavery are strong.

It has its evils and abuses...We recognize the negro as God and God's Book and God's Laws, in nature, tell us to recognize him - our inferior, fitted expressly for servitude...You cannot transform the negro into anything one-tenth as useful or as good as what slavery enables them to be.


The time for compromise has now passed, and the South is determined to maintain her position, and make all who oppose her smell Southern powder and feel Southern steel.


Governments rest on the consent of the governed, and that it is the right of the people to alter or abolish them at will whenever they become destructive of the ends for which they were established.


Neither current events nor history show that the majority rule, or ever did rule.


Nothing fills me with deeper sadness than to see a Southerner apologizing for the defense we made of our inheritance.


A question settled by violence, or in disregard of law, must remain unsettled forever.


If slavery be a sin, it is not yours.

It does not rest on your action for its origin, on your consent for its existence. It is a common law right to property in the service of man; its origin was Divine decree.


Tradition usually rests upon something which men did know;

history is often the manufacture of the mere liar.


Our government is an agency of delegated and strictly limited powers.

Its founders did not look to its preservation by force; but the chain they wove to bind these States together was one of love and mutual good offices.


About Jefferson Davis

Quotes 51 sayings
Nationality American
Profession Leader
Birthday October 16

The withdrawal of a State from a league has no revolutionary or insurrectionary characteristic. The government of the State remains unchanged as to all internal affairs. It is only its external or confederate relations that are altered. To term this action of a Sovereign a 'rebellion' is a gross abuse of language.


The past is dead; let it bury its dead, its hopes and its aspirations; before you lies the future-a future full of golden promise.


Lay aside all rancor, all bitter sectional feeling, and to make your places in the ranks of those who will bring about a consummation devoutly to be wished—a reunited country.


A government, to afford the needful protection and exercise proper care for the welfare of a people, must have homogeneity in its constituents. It is this necessity which has divided the human race into separate nations, and finally has defeated the grandest efforts which conquerors have made to give unlimited extent to their domain.


I will admit no bond that holds me to a party a day longer than I agree to its principles. When men meet together to confer, and ascertain whether or not they do agree, and find that they differ - radically, essentially, irreconcilably differ - what belongs to an honorable position except to part? They cannot consistently act together any longer.


If the Confederacy fails, there should be written on its tombstone: Died of a Theory.


Your little army, derided for its want of arms, derided for its lack of all the essential material of war, has met the grand army of the enemy, routed it at every point, and now it flies, inglorious in retreat before our victorious columns. We have taught them a lesson in their invasion of the sacred soil of Virginia.


At Rest An American Soldier And Defender of the Constitution.


For an enemy so relentless in the war for our subjugation, we could not be expected to mourn; yet, in view of its political consequences, it could not be regarded otherwise than as a great misfortune for the South.


Be not haughty with the humble; be not humble with the haughty.


Upon my weary heart was showered smiles, plaudits and flowers, but beyond them I saw troubles and thorns innumerable.


Obstacles may retard, but they cannot long prevent the progress of a movement sanctified by its justice, and sustained by a virtuous people .


Butler is branded a felon, an outlaw, an enemy of Mankind, and so ordered that in the event of his capture, the officer in command of the capturing force do cause him to be immediately executed by hanging.


Without doing injustice to the living, it may safely be asserted that our loss is irreparable; and that among the shining hosts of the great and good who now cluster around the banner of the country, there exists no purer spirit, no more heroic soul, than that of the illustrious man whose death I join you in lamenting.


Truth crushed to earth is truth still and like a seed will rise again.


I worked night and day for twelve years to prevent the war, but I could not.

The North was mad and blind, would not let us govern ourselves, and so the war came.


All we ask is to be let alone.


God forbid that the day should ever come when to be true to my constituents is to be hostile to the Union.


How idle is this prating about natural rights as though still containing all that had been forfeited.


It is our duty to keep the memory of our heroes green.

Yet they belong to the whole country; they belong to America.


We protest solemnly in the face of mankind, that we desire peace at any sacrifice, save that of honor.


The Slave must be made fit for his freedom by education and discipline, and thus made unfit for slavery. And as soon as he becomes unfit for slavery, the master will no longer desire to hold him as a slave.


A restitution of the Union has been rendered forever impossible.


The authors of all our misfortune.


Pray excuse me. I cannot take it.


I tried all in my power to avert this war.

I saw it coming, for twelve years I worked night and day to prevent it, but I could not. The North was mad and blind; it would not let us govern ourselves, and so the war came, and now it must go on unless you acknowledge our right to self government. We are not fighting for slavery. We are fighting for Independence.


Secession belongs to a different class of remedies.

It is to be justified upon the basis that the States are Sovereign. There was a time when none denied it. I hope the time may come again, when a better comprehension of the theory of our Government, and the inalienable rights of the people of the States, will prevent any one from denying that each State is a Sovereign, and thus may reclaim the grants which it has made to any agent whomsoever.


Our armies were in as much chaos in victory as theirs in defeat.


Among our neighbors of Central and Southern America, we see the Caucasian mingled with the Indian and the African. They have the forms of free government, because they have copied them. To its benefits they have not attained, because that standard of civilization is above their race. Revolution succeeds Revolution, and the country mourns that some petty chief may triumph, and through a sixty days' government ape the rulers of the earth.


The troops of other states have their reputation to gain, the sons of the Alamo have theirs to maintain.


If you will not have it thus: if in the pride of power, if in contempt of reason and reliance upon force, you say we shall not go, but shall remain as subjects to you, then, gentlemen of the North, a war is to be inaugurated the like of which men have not seen.


Sir, it is true that republics have often been cradled in war, but more often they have met with a grave in that cradle. Peace is the interest, the policy, the nature of a popular Government. War may bring benefits to a few, but privation and loss are the lot of the many. An appeal to arms should be the last resort, and only by national rights or national honor can it be justified.


The contest is not over, the strife is not ended. It has only entered on a new and enlarged arena.


Vicksburg is the nail head that holds the South’s two halves together.


African slavery, as it exists in the United States, is a moral, a social, and a political blessing.


Let men not ask what the law requires, but give whatever freedom demands.


It is a duty we owe to posterity to see that our children shall know the virtues, and rise worthy of their sires.