Marion county historians discover grave of instrumental Mississippi figure

MARION COUNTY, Miss. - The Marion County Historical Society unveiled the discovery of the gravesite of a prominent Mississippi figure Dougal McLaughlin.

McLaughlin was a prominent Marion County citizen that played an instrumental role in forming Mississippi into statehood.

The Marion County Historical Society and Chris Watts, MC Museum of Archives and History curator, made the valuable discovery in January of 2017.

The gravesite of Dougal McLaughlin was discovered in Sandy Hook, MS on private property near the historical landmark of John Ford's land.

Watts said, "He came to the Mississippi territory very early on. He was a native of Scotland and he was elected very early on."

"Reverend John Ford and McLaughlin was one of the two delegates for Marion county to the first Mississippi Constitutional convention in 1817" said Watts.

He added, "He also represented Marion county at the second constitution in Marion county in 1832.”

Dougal McLaughlin was basically an unknown individual in Marion County until now.

Watts said in 1864 General John Davidson and his army raided John Ford's land and the Marion County courthouse. He believes important documents about McLaughlin were destroyed. But, with the discovery of his gravesite, research began on this historic character.

Dougal McLaughlin’s signature can be found in the first 1817 MS State Constitution, preceding that of John Ford.

“You know it’s a great honor to stand at the grave of such a prominent figure that was so instrumental in the early history of Mississippi" said Watts.

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