Ethelbert Barksdale
Historical Figure
Nationality: United States (Confederate States, 1861-1865)
Date of Birth: 1824
Date of Death: 1893
Cause of Death: Natural causes
Religion: Protestantism
Occupation: Journalist, politician
Parents: William Barksdale Sr.;
Nancy Hervey Lester
Spouse: Alice-Jane Harris
Children: Three
Relatives: William Barksdale (brother)
Political Party: Democratic Party
Political Office(s): Confederate States Representative from Mississippi (1861-1865);
United States Representative from Mississippi (1883-1887)
Fictional Appearances:
The Guns of the South
POD: January 17, 1864
Type of Appearance: Direct
Nationality: Confederate States
Political Party: Confederate Party
Political Office(s): Confederate States Representative from Mississippi

Ethelbert Barksdale (January 4, 1824 – February 17, 1893) was a United States Representative from Mississippi (1883-1887), as well as a member of the Confederate States House of Representatives during the American Civil War. His brother William was killed at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Near the war's end, Rep. Barksdale introduced legislation that would permit "Negroes" to fight in the Confederate States Army against the Union. This bill passed the Confederate House, but was barely defeated in the Senate. A few weeks later, a version of this "last resort" effort was eventually approved, though never implemented.

Ethelbert Barksdale in The Guns of the South[]

Ethelbert Barksdale became a staunch member of President Robert E. Lee's Confederate Party. He was the lone member of his party hailing from Mississippi to be re-elected in the wake of Nathan Bedford Forrest's moderately successful opposition to the end of slavery.

In one of Lee's darkest moments, he took comfort from Barksdale's words of support.