April 2014 Artifact of the Month

Object ID: 0985.7.137a-b

Object Name: Uniform

History: This child-size captain’s shell jacket and pants belonged to Joseph Evan Davis, son of Jefferson and Varina Davis. It is believed that Varina sewed this (along with other miniature uniforms for her eldest son, Jefferson Davis, Jr.) while the family was living in the White House of the Confederacy in Richmond, Virginia.

Little Joe, as he was often called (to distinguish him from his uncle, Joseph Davis), was beloved by his parents, and said to be the best behaved of the rambunctious Davis children. He had just turned five years old when, on April 30, 1864, he fell nearly 15 feet from the porch railing on the east side of the White House of the Confederacy. He is thought to have sustained head and chest injuries, and died about an hour later.

This uniform is currently being conserved through the generosity of the Virginia Division, Children of the Confederacy. 

Please also visit our Document of the Month page.


Artifact of the Month Archives

Click on the images below to learn more about past Artifacts of the Month.

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013

September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

August 2012

July 2012

June 2012

May 2012

April 2012