THE ADMINISTRATION OF GOVERNOR LEAKE.

Source: Lowry, Robert and McCardle, William H. A History of Mississippi, from the Discovery of the Great River by Hernando DeSoto, Including the Earliest Settlement Made by the French Under Iberville, to the Death of Jefferson Davis [1541-1889]. Jackson, Miss.: R. H. Henry & Co., 1891. Pages 260-262.

Walter Leake, a native of Albermarle county, Virginia, was the third Governor of Mississippi, and was elected Governor in the summer of 1821, and was re-elected to the same position in 1823.

He came to the Territory at an early day bearing a commission from the President of the United States as one of the judges in the Territory of Mississippi. He established his home in Claiborne county, where he so commended himself to the people of that county, that, when Congress had authorized the assembling of a convention to frame a constitution under which the Territory could enter the Union as a State, he was chosen one of the delegates from that county.

As a judge, he was able, learned, upright, impartial and courteous. No one ever questioned his thorough integrity, the purity of his life in official position, or in private personal intercourse with the people. In the Convention he was firm, prudent and patriotic -- always zealous in promotion the interests of the people, and carefully protecting their rights. He so impressed his integrity, ability and courage on the bench and in the Convention, that he was chosen by the first Legislature that ever assembled in the State as one of the United States Senators. He served in that body until the 4th of March, 1821, when he resigned to become a candidate for Governor. He served with so much acceptability, during the two years of his first term, which closed with the year 1825. Governor Leake, however, had been for several years in failing health, and on the 17th day of November, 1825, he died at the village of Clinton, (then called Mount Salus), in the county of Hinds, about ten miles from the capital.

Walter Leake was an unquestioned patriot, and an honorable, educated gentleman; and while there was nothing of great and striking interest or importance during his administration of nearly four years, he labored assiduously, and co-operated zealously with the legislators of those days, to advance the prosperity of the State and the happiness of its people. In his life he builded his own best monument -- the only monument that man can crave -- a lasting memorial in the hearts of his countrymen of patriotic devotion to all public and private duties, and those duties well and faithfully performed.

Governor Leake left several children, and his descendants, in the persons of his grand and great grand children, are to be found to-day in more than one county in the State, all respected and honorable citizens. His name has been perpetuated by the Legislature, and it is borne to-day by one of the counties of the State.

When Governor Leake passed from this world his duties were devolved upon Lieutenant-Governor Gerard C. Brandon, who performed all the functions of chief magistrate until the successor of Governor Leake was qualified and entered upon the discharge of his duties.

At the first election of Governor Leake, in 1821, Dr. David Dickson was chosen Lieutenant Governor, and when he was re-elected in 1823, Gerard C. Brandon was elected for the position held by Dr. Dickson for the two previous years.



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