Nearly 150 years after the 13th amendment was ratified by three-fourths of the states, Mississippi has finally gotten around to officially banning slavery.
According to the Jackson Clarion-Ledger, the decision was inspired by the film Lincoln.
Thought both houses of the state legislature ratified the amendment in 1995, the measure was never sent to the Office of the Federal Registrar, and thus never made official.
It was true enough that Mississippi became the last state to vote in favor of ratification back in 1995, but according to Batra, “because the state never officially notified the US Archivist, the ratification is not official.”
After passing along this information to his University of Mississippi Medical Center colleague Ken Sullivan, Batra went on about his day.
But Sullivan delved deeper into this seemingly egregious oversight, and decided something had to be done. He contacted the office of Delbert Hosemann, Mississippi’s Secretary of State, and notified them of the filing error.
The proper forms were promptly forwarded to the Office of the Federal Register, and, on February 7th, Mississippi officially became the last of the Civil War states to ratify the amendment abolishing slavery in the United States.
It is still unclear why the measure was never sent to the Federal Registrar.
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