UDC gathers for dedication

Submitted

On June 16, members of the Mississippi Division UDC gathered at Grenada to dedicate the newest Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway Marker at the intersection of Highway 51 and Highway 8.

It had been the desire of the Division for a long time to erect a monument in Grenada. Highway 51 is officially recognized by the state of Mississippi as the Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway from the Tennessee line to the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

Mississippi Division President Frances Woodruff and Division Jefferson Davis Memorial Highway Chairman Pam Mauldin began in earnest to get this marker placed in March of 2012 when they met with Tommy McCain of the Mississippi Department of Transportation to select a location on Highway 51 in Grenada.

After receiving the preliminary paper work from MDOT in April, Frances and members of her family met Susan Easter, MS Division Treasurer, and her husband on the grounds of Beauvoir to pick out two pieces of the old MS Division UDC Arch that once stood as the entrance to Beauvoir for the marker.

When Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast in August of 2005 a casino barge broke loose and hit the white granite arch destroying it but the glancing blow knock the barge away from the last home of Jefferson Davis saving it from being completely demolished. The pieces of the arch were moved and have been lying on the ground near the Confederate Veterans Cemetery at the back of the property ever since. Members of the Mississippi Division UDC thought that this granite would make a meaningful highway marker.

After getting the final permit from MDOT the marker was engraved by Mississippi Granite Works in Louisville and erected on June 12.

Attending the dedication from Winston Guards 2643 of Louisville were Frances Woodruff, Beth Hemphill, Judy Goodin and Connie Faye Estes. Also in attendance were Franklin Woodruff, Jason Hemphill of the Captain John M. Bradley Camp 384 SCV and Nathan Hemphill of the Beauregard Rifles 951 Children of the Confederacy and newly elected President of the MS Division Children of the Confederacy.