David Holmes (politician)

David Holmes ( born March 10, 1769 York County, Pennsylvania, † August 20 1832 in Winchester, Virginia) was the last governor of the Mississippi Territory and the first governor of the state of Mississippi.


Holmes was born in Pennsylvania and moved as a child with his family to Virginia. From 1797 to 1808 he was a member of Virginia in the U.S. House of Representatives before he was appointed as the fourth Governor of the Mississippi Territory. Holmes was very popular; his appointment marked the end of a long period of disputes in the territory.

In 1817, Mississippi joined as the 20th state in the United States and Holmes was elected as its first governor. He was sworn in October 1817, although the state's sovereignty was officially in December 1817. During his tenure, the legal system of the State was introduced, established the state militia (state militia ), and the land east of the Pearl River, which was left to the Choctaw Indians, reorganized. After his term of two years, he decided not to stand again at the next election in 1819.

1820 Holmes was sent as one of Mississippi's senators in Congress, but resigned in 1825, back when he was re-elected as governor. His deteriorating health forced him, after only six months in office (January to July 1826 ) resign as governor.

Holmes then returned to his home state of Virginia, where his health continued to deteriorate. He died in 1832 near Winchester, and was buried on the Mount Hebron Cemetery.