Some Delta delegates to the Arkansas and Mississippi Secession Conventions



Map of Mississippi before the Civil War

Mississippi 1852

Tunica County, Mississippi

Andrew Miller was born on December 6,1801 in South Carolina.  He moved to Mississippi and began planting near Austin in Tunica county.  Representing Tunica County in the secession convention, he voted strictly secessionist. Miller was too old to join the Confederate Army and died in August, 1864.  He is buried in Pontotoc County, Mississippi.    His brother, Hugh Reid Miller, was also a convention delegate representing Pontotoc County. When the war broke out, Hugh Reid Miller served as a Captain and later Colonel of the 42nd Mississippi Infantry.  He was mortally wounded at Gettysburg and died July 19, 1863.

Coahoma County, Mississippi

alcorn, james l.

James Lusk Alcorn was born November 4, 1816 in Illinois and his family moved shortly after to Kentucky.  He worked in Arkansas awhile before moving to Coahoma County, Mississippi where he owned a plantation and operated as a lawyer near Friar’s Point.  Alcorn represented Coahoma County at the secession convention and was viewed as a cooperationist.  He voted against secession first, but changed his vote to yes in a show of unity.  Alcorn briefly served as a brigadier general in the state militia before serving in the Mississippi General Assembly.  After the war, James L. Alcorn joined the Republican Party serving in the state legislature, as Governor, and U.S. Senator.  He died December 20,1894 and is buried in Coahoma County.

Tallahatchie County, Mississippi

Alexander Patterson was born around 1822 in Tennessee and was living near Charleston in Tallahatchie County as a farmer in 1860.  He is recognized as one of the first settlers of the county. Patterson represented Tallahatchie County at the secession convention.  Not much else can be located about him.  His wife is buried in Smith-Murphy Cemetery in Tallahatchie County.  She died on April 21, 1865. He possibly died before 1870.

Map of Arkansas in 1860

Arkansas 1860


Monroe County, Arkansas

William Montgomery Mayo was born on September 26, 1822 in Martin County, North Carolina.  After a brief time in Tennessee, he moved to Arkansas in 1853 and bought a tract of land near Indian Bay in Monroe County.  He was selected to represent Monroe County at Little Rock in the secession convention.  Afterward, he enlisted in the Confederate Army as a private in the Monroe Rebels of the 25th Arkansas. He soon received a commission as Captain to raise a company of partisan rangers to operate in Eastern Arkansas.  This company eventually became Company C of the 47th Arkansas Mounted Infantry.  His unit participated in the battles of Clarendon and Fort Davidson.  It was in this last battle that he received a severe wound in the shoulder.  He was at home when the war ended.  William Montgomery Mayo died on October 21, 1890 and is buried in Monroe County, Arkansas.

Phillips County, Arkansas

Thomas Burton Hanly was born June 9, 1812 in Jessamine County, Kentucky.  He later moved to Arkansas serving as a member of the Arkansas House of Representatives and Senate.  Hanly was a lawyer. He was chosen to represent Phillips County at the secession convention Little Rock.  His wife was the daughter of Sylvanus Phillips, the founder of Helena. After the war started, he was elected to represent Arkansas in the Confederate House of Representatives  from 1861 to 1865.  He died June 9, 1880 and is buried in Phillips County.

Arkansas County, Arkansas

James Lockart Totten was born March 23, 1804 in Tennessee and moved to Marshall County, Mississippi.  He was a prominent lawyer and state senator from Holly Springs, MS.  Totten gave up his law practice and moved to St. Charles, Arkansas buying a plantation.  He was chosen to represent Arkansas county at the secession convention in Little Rock.   James Totten died at DeWitt on April 22, 1867. Have not been able to locate his place of burial.

Phillips County, Arkansas


Charles William Adams was born August 16,1817 in Boston, Massachusetts.  He moved to Indiana and then to Helena in 1835.  He was a lawyer, judge, and planter.  Adams was chosen as one of two representatives at the secession convention in Little Rock.  Early in 1862, he helped organize the 23rd Arkansas Infantry being named Colonel.  Adams was transferred to the Trans Mississippi and organized an infantry regiment called Adam’s Infantry serving as it’s Colonel.  Later he was Chief of Staff for General Thomas C. Hindman.  Adams served as Commander of the Northern Sub-district of the Confederate Department of Arkansas.  However, his department was behind enemy lines so he basically was a figure head.  Although listed as a general, he was never officially promoted to that rank.  After the war, he moved to Memphis, TN and died  September 9,1878 of yellow fever.  He is buried at Elmwood Cemetery in Shelby County.  He was the grandfather of Helen Keller.

Issaquena County, Mississippi

Albert C. Gibson was born in Mississippi around 1828 and became a wealthy planter in Issaquena County near Skipwith’s Landing.  He owned a large plantation and worked 87 slaves in 1860. He voted straight secession and joined the Confederate army when the war began serving as a Lieutenant in the Issaquena Artillery.  He was captured at Fort Donelson and sent to Johnson’s Island prison.  After the war, he moved across the Mississippi to Madison Paris, Louisiana and served in the Louisiana Legislature in the 1880s.  Gibson died in 1892.

De Soto County, Mississippi

Stephen Darden Johnson was born on February 6, 1812 in Georgia.  He moved to De Soto county where he was a large planter, owning 55 slaves in 1860.  Prior to the Civil War, he also became involved in politics serving on the county board of police as well as the state legislature.  He represented De Soto County where he voted for one of the delaying amendments before voting for secession. He was too old to join the army and died during the war on August 21, 1863, apparently by falling from his horse while fleeing Federal troops.

Bolivar County, Mississippi

Miles Hill McGehee was brother of fellow delegate Edward F. McGehee.  Miles was born in Georgia on Novemeber 26, 1813.  Like his brother, he moved to Mississippi and became a large planter in Bolivar County near Concordia.  He was one of the largest planters in Bolivar County and one of the largest slave owners in the convention possessing 234 slaves in 1860.  He also served in the state legislature representing Bolivar County.  he had defeated Charles Clark.  McGehee did not support secession voting three delaying amendments before voting for it.   He served as Quarter master General for the Mississippi Army of 10,000 made up of militia in 1861.  McGehee also paid for an entire company to be organized and outfitted that would become part of the 20th Mississippi Infantry.  He died during the war on January 15, 1865.

Washington County, Mississippi

Jacob Small Yerber was born in Pennsylvania on January 11, 1810 and moved to Tennessee as a child.  He later joined the Tennessee bar and practiced law in Nashville.  Yerber moved to Vicksburg in 1837 and then to Greenville in Washington County where he served in the state legislature and as a circuit judge.  Representing Washington County, he was an ardent cooperationist and eventually voted for secession. He was too old to serve, but sent four sons off to war.  One died during the conflict.  Afterwards, he was President of the 1865 Constitutional Convention.  He died on July 14, 1867.







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