Did You Know?

Did You Know?

Several of our early DeSoto leaders have been spotlighted in this article; however none have surpassed today’s individual – Mariah Martin Davidson, born in Nova Scotia in 1799 of Scotch parents. She married James H. Davidson who was born in 1805 also in Nova Scotia. The Davidsons moved to the Grand Cane area where they begin buying land northward.

James H. Davidson died in 1853 at the age of 48 years leaving Mariah with 5 children and a plantation with 21 slaves. This was a situation where few women could have succeeded but there were few women with the ability and determination of Maria (changed her first name). Maria Davidson had lost her husband several years before the Civil War but she became adept at managing a plantation. She educated her children and held her real estate and livestock in spite of the misfortune of wars and drastic misfortunes and loss by fire of two homes.

With wonderful thrift she survived well the period of reconstruction and added to her land holdings. In matters of agriculture she was the “Hettie Green of the South”. She proved to be a better plantation manger than the best of men. Men could not beat her in judgment of mules, cotton, land and the psychology and valuation of people.




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