Welcome to the Jefferson Davis County Mississippi Genealogy & History Network website providing free information to genealogical and historical researchers.
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The creation of Jefferson Davis County was authorized by a legislative act of March 31, 1906 and approved May 9 of that same year. It was the result of residents of western Covington County and eastern Lawrence County complaining about the difficulty of traversing rivers and streams to get to their respective county seats. These areas were combined to form a new county named in honor of Jefferson Davis, the only President of the Confederate States of America. The county was the seventy-seventh county to organize in Mississippi.
A special election held in April, 1906, determined that the county seat would be located at Prentiss, in the central part of the county. Prentiss was established in 1903, when the area was still Lawrence County. Some sources claim that Prentiss was named for Sargent Smith Prentiss, the gifted Mississippi orator. Other sources claim that Prentiss was named in honor of Prentiss Webb Berry, a prominent landowner in the area who founded the town when the Mississippi Central Railroad was built here in 1903.
The first bank in the town was called the Bank of Blountville. As an early settlement, the area was called Blountville for William Blount, a local settler and merchant, and his family, but it was never an official name. In 1933, Jefferson Davis County was the first county in Mississippi to vote to make alcohol illegal in the county following the repeal of prohibition. Following this same sense of morality, the citizens of Prentiss voted to prohibit Round Dancing in the Community House in 1938.
In 1935 Raymond Hamilton, a known outlaw who had a habit of hiding in the hills of Jefferson Davis County, robbed the Bank of Blountville. Knowing a posse would be formed to chase him down, Hamilton took two hostages to facilitate his escape. He drove his car to Memphis, Tennessee and after locking his two hostages in the rumble seat, left the car in a parking lot. The two men, named Smith and Bayliss eventually escaped and called the Jefferson Davis County Sheriff to come get them.
The county has a total area of 409.10 square miles, of which 408.41 square miles is land and 0.70 square mile (0.17%) is water. The population recorded in the 1910 Federal Census was 12,860. The 2010 census recorded 12,487 residents in the county.
Neighboring counties are Simpson County (north), Covington County (east), Lamar County (southeast), Marion County (south), and Lawrence County (west). Communities in the county include Bassfield, Prentiss, Carson, Oakvale (partly in Lawrence County).
Jefferson Davis County MSGHN has many records here on our website. Marriage Records, Cemetery listings, tombstone photos, and more. Look at the Jefferson Davis County Data links for a list of available data.
Birth Records - The Mississippi Department of Health maintains records of births after November 1, 1912 on file. This was the year Mississippi began keeping official birth records. You can obtain official copies of birth certificates by mail by using this birth record application on their website. If you just have to order by internet or phone, or use a credit card, you can use VitalCheck, a third party records company recognized by the Mississippi Dept. of Health. Since there are no official birth records before November 1, 1912 for births prior to that date you will need to determine birth information from census records, bible records, baptismal records, cemetery tombstones, etc.
Death Records - The Mississippi Department of Health maintains births recorded after November 1, 1912 on file. This was the year Mississippi began keeping official death records. You can obtain official copies of death certificates by mail by using this death record application on their website. If you just have to order by internet or phone, or use a credit card, you can use VitalCheck, a third party records company recognized by the Mississippi Dept. of Health. Since there are no official death records before November 1, 1912 ...READ MORE
Jefferson Davis County is located in the south-central portion of Mississippi.
Marriage information is an important part of any family genealogy. These dates may assist you in your Jefferson Davis County, Mississippi research.
For a list of Jefferson Davis County, Mississippi Cemeteries, tombstone photos and more.