By Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger
Well better late than never, y’all. The great state of Mississippi officially ratified the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution on February 7, 2013. For those counting, we’re now 50 states out of 50 against human bondage. Who says no progress is being made? And to whose credit is this crowning achievement? Why Abraham Lincoln, of course. Well, sort of.
It seems Ranjan Batra, a professor of neurobiology at the University of Mississippi Medical Center, just finished watching Steven Spielberg’s Oscar nominated movie, Lincoln (filmed here in Richmond, you know). That got the academic wondering if the Magnolia State ever did ratify the law to free over half its citizens. Batra consulted Ken Sullivan, an anatomical material specialist at UMC, who sliced right into the subject (pun intended). Sullivan’s sleuthing found that while the legislature passed the bill authorizing ratification in 1995, one final requirement had never been met. Mississippi’s secretary of state had forgotten to send a copy of the bill to the federal register’s office for inclusion. On January 30, 2013, the Honorable Delbert Hosemann corrected the oversight and mailed the bill. On February 7 the bill officially became law and Mississippi joined the rest of us. Welcome back!
In honor of the occasion, let’s raise our mint juleps high and hear the sweet sounds of Alan Jackson and the Bellamy Brothers singing the newest of southern anthems:
UPDATE 2/24/2013: Our friend and fellow guest blogger, David Drumm (“Nal”), has come up with this interesting twist in the story:
Reporter Jerry Mitchell of the Jackson Clarion-Ledger circled back yesterday for an interview with the Assistant Secretary of State who says she mailed in the paperwork …
She distinctly remembers sending in the final paperwork in 1995 to have the 13th Amendment ratified, she said. ”That was taken care of. That was important to me.”
Source: Maddow blog
~Mark Esposito, Guest Blogger