Gerard Chittocque Brandon, Fourth and Sixth Governor of Mississippi: 1825-1826; 1826-1832
Gerard C. Brandon was the first native Mississippian to be elected governor. He also held the office longer than any other governor before the American Civil War.
Brandon actually served as governor twice before he was ever elected
to that office. As lieutenant governor he became governor after the death
of Governor Walter Leake in 1825 and again in 1826 when Governor David
Holmes resigned because of failing health. While he was completing Governor
Holmes's unexpired term, Brandon was elected governor in 1827 and then
re-elected in 1829.
Two major Indian land cessions, which were finalized during his administration,
made several million acres of good cotton land available for settlement
and Mississippi soon became the heartland of the “Cotton Kingdom.”
The rapid development of the newly acquired territory required a road
system into the interior parts of the state. Brandon promoted the construction
of roads, bridges, and turnpikes, as well as the development of water
transportation to facilitate that settlement. A completely new form of
transportation that would soon revolutionize travel in America was inaugurated
in 1831 when the state granted a charter to the first railroad to operate
David Sansing, Ph.D., is history professor emeritus, University of Mississippi.
Posted December 2003
Mississippi Official and Statistical Register (1912), 52.
Rowland, Dunbar. Mississippi Comprising Sketches in Cyclopedic Form I. 287-293.
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