“CWRGM is changing the way we think, write, and teach about the American Civil War and Reconstruction.”


It didn't matter if you were a man or woman, young or old, rich or poor, or black or white — Mississippians across the spectrum contacted their governor about every issue imaginable, which makes this collection truly representative of this diverse state.   

Letter from an abolitionist to Mississippi Governor John J. Pettus; November 30, 1859


Civil War & Reconstruction Governors of Mississippi (CWRGM) is a digital history project that provides free online access to all of the state's governors' papers from just before the Civil War through the era of Reconstruction. Mississippi was one of the most powerful states in the Union when it seceded and joined the Confederacy. Over the next sixteen years, Mississippians played an active role in a war that brought revolutionary change to the state through military campaigns, emancipation, army occupation, and powerful legislation.

Letter from Anne Mataw to the Mississippi Legislature; December 2, 1859

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The challenge in the past has been that the original, paper governors' collections are so massive that scholars, teachers, and the public often lacked the time to thoroughly mine it for information. That is why CWRGM — a partnership between the The University of Southern Mississippi, the Mississippi Department of Archives and History, and the Mississippi Digital Library — is digitizing, transcribing, and providing historical context for the nearly 20,000 letters, military telegrams, and official orders that poured into the governors' office as the state navigated secession, joined the Confederacy, experienced destructive military invasions, witnessed the end of slavery, and faltered through the uneasy and violent peace that followed the war. By making these documents available free and online, CWRGM is revolutionizing how scholars, teachers, students, and the public understand, teach, and write about the Civil War.