Mississippi Ordinance of Secession 1861
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Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar (II)
Library of Congress

On January, 9 1861, an ordinance to dissolve the union between the State of Mississippi and other states united under the compact entitled "The Constitution of the United States" was created.

The ordinance was drafted by Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar (II), who resigned from the U.S. Congress within the same month that he wrote the ordinance.

People still debate the reasons, but the delegates tell us, in a declaration written to make their purpose clear: 

"Our position is thoroughly identified with slavery... the greatest material interest of the world. Its labor supplies the product which constitutes by far the largest and most important portions of commerce . . . a blow at slavery is a blow at commerce and civilization . . .  There was no choice left us but . . . a dissolution of the Union."

- L.Q.C. Lamar II.

For the next four years, Mississippians would fight what is still the bloodiest war in American history. By the end of it, Mississippi’s cities and economy would lie in ruins… But Mississippi’s slaves would be free.

For more interesting facts about Mississippi's 200-year history, watch a new interstitial each week of 2017 with Mississippi: A Thread through Time on MPB TV.