“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Biotech and MCV District in Richmond, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)

President’s Mansion

White House of the Confederacy

President’s Mansion CWT Marker image. Click for full size.
February 19, 2009
1. President’s Mansion CWT Marker
Inscription.  This house was the executive mansion of Confederate President Jefferson Davis and his family from August 1861 until April 2, 1865. A West Point graduate, former U.S. senator from Mississippi, and former U.S. secretary of war, Davis was the Confederacy’s only president. He worked long hours here, meeting with Confederate civilian and military leaders. On April 14, 1862, he held a council of war here with Secretary of War George W. Randolph, Gen. Joseph E. Johnston, Gen. Robert E. Lee, and other officers to discuss the Confederacy’s defense against Union Gen. George B. McClellan’s advancing army.

More often, the house was the site of official receptions and unofficial parties. One observer declared Confederate First Lady Varina Davis “to be a woman of warm heart and impetuous tongue, witty and caustic, with a sensitive nature underlying all; a devoted wife and mother, and a most gracious mistress of a salon.”

The Davises’ young family enlivened the White House. “Statesmen passing through the halls on their way to the discussion of weighty things were likely to hear the ringing laughter of the care-free and happy Davis children
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issuing from somewhere above the stairs or the gardens,” remembered a family friend. Two Davis children, William and Varina Anne, were born in this house; one, Joseph, died here from a fall on April 30, 1864.

On April 4, 1865, U.S. President Abraham Lincoln visited here ten days before his assassination and less than 48 hours after Davis departed. Here, Lincoln began meeting with prominent Virginians to discuss the state’s reconstruction.
Erected by Virginia Civil War Trails.
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Government & PoliticsWar, US Civil. In addition, it is included in the Virginia Civil War Trails series list. A significant historical date for this entry is April 2, 1926.
Location. 37° 32.454′ N, 77° 25.776′ W. Marker is in Richmond, Virginia. It is in the Biotech and MCV District. Marker is at the intersection of East Clay Street and North 12th Street, on the right when traveling east on East Clay Street. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Richmond VA 23219, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. White House of the Confederacy (a few steps from this marker); Alexander H. Stephens House Site (a few steps from this marker); Propeller shaft of the Iron-Clad Virginia (within shouting distance of this marker);
President’s Mansion image. Click for full size.
February 20, 2009
2. President’s Mansion
Wickham-Valentine House (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Maupin - Maury House (about 400 feet away); Matthew Fontaine Maury (about 400 feet away); Grant House / Sheltering Arms Hospital (about 500 feet away); The Edward V. Valentine Sculpture Studio (about 500 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Richmond.
More about this marker. On the lower left is a period photo of the mansion with the caption, “White House, April 1865. Built for Dr. John Brockenbrough in 1818, the mansion housed a school after the war. The Confederate Memorial Literary Society acquired it in 1894. – Courtesy Library of Congress”

In the upper center and right are three photos of the Davis family: “President Jefferson Davis (1808-1889)”, “Varina Howell Davis (1826-1906)”, and “The Davis children (left to right: Jeff, Jr., Margaret, Varina Anne, and William) in Montreall, 1867”. Jefferson Davis photo courtesy National Archives and records Administration; others courtesy Museum and White House of the Confederacy
White House of the Confederacy image. Click for full size.
February 20, 2009
3. White House of the Confederacy
Richmond, Va. Residence of Jefferson Davis (1201 East Clay Street); a closer view image. Click for full size.
4. Richmond, Va. Residence of Jefferson Davis (1201 East Clay Street); a closer view
Library of Congress [LC-B811- 3376]
Historic Landmark Plaques image. Click for full size.
April 7, 2010
5. Historic Landmark Plaques
The White House
of the Confederacy
has been designated a
Registered National
Historic Landmark

under the provisions of the
Historic Sites Act of August 21, 1935
This site possesses exceptional value
in commemorating and illustrating
the history of the United States

U.S. Department of the Interior
National Park Service
Credits. This page was last revised on February 1, 2023. It was originally submitted on February 19, 2009, by Bernard Fisher of Richmond, Virginia. This page has been viewed 1,352 times since then and 30 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on February 19, 2009.   4. submitted on March 22, 2010.   5. submitted on April 7, 2010. • Craig Swain was the editor who published this page.

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Oct. 2, 2023