Sarah (Taylor) Davis

Sarah Knox (Taylor) Davis (1814 - 1835)

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Sarah Knox Davis formerly Taylor
Born in Vincennes, Indianamap [uncertain]
Ancestors ancestors
Wife of — married 1835 in Jefferson County, Kentuckymap
Died in St. Francisville, Louisianamap
Profile last modified 21 Jun 2019 | Created 14 Sep 2010
This page has been accessed 3,198 times.
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Birth location had been Kentucky but last source shown states Vincennes, Indiana Margaret Mackall (Smith) and Zachary Taylor had three daughters and one son. Sarah Knox Taylor was their second child and spent some years growing up in military installations. Her father became a general and commanded forts; her mother provided most of her education. Sarah was given the nickname "Knoxie", which originated from her middle name and from Fort Knox II in Vincennes, Indiana, where she was born. In the early 1830s, her father commanded Fort Crawford at Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin, and was involved in waging the Black Hawk War. His wife and children were living there with him.

At age 17, Sarah fell in love with Jefferson Davis, a recent graduate of the United States Military Academy and a lieutenant, who was second to General Taylor at the fort. Davis was transferred to St. Louis in 1833, yet managed to keep in contact with the woman whom he wished to marry. Taylor admired Davis for his soldiering skills, but opposed the romantic match. The Taylors' older daughter had already married Army surgeon Robert C. Wood, and they were raising three young children in a desolate frontier outpost. Together with their own experience, the Taylors felt that the military life was too hard and did not want Sarah to be an Army wife.[1]

Jefferson Davis first marriage was to Sarah Knox Taylor, the daughter of Zachary Taylor, on 17 June 1835. She died three months later on 15 Sept 1835.[2]


  1. Cooper, William J. (2000). Jefferson Davis, American. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. ISBN 9780307772640.
  2. "Kentucky Marriages, 1785-1979," index, FamilySearch ( : accessed 10 Apr 2014), Jefferson Davis and Sarah Knox Taylor, 1835; citing Jefferson, Kentucky, reference bk 2 p 154; FHL microfilm 482706.

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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Sarah by comparing test results with other carriers of her ancestors' mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known mtDNA test-takers in her direct maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share DNA with Sarah:

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Sarah is 26 degrees from Lizzie Griffiths, 18 degrees from Fred Rogers and 13 degrees from Henry VIII of England on our single family tree. Login to find your connection.

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Categories: US President Direct Descendant | Children of US Presidents