Charles Rinaldo Floyd papers
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Charles Rinaldo Floyd papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Floyd, Charles Rinaldo, 1797-1845.
Title: Charles Rinaldo Floyd papers
Dates: 1816-1845
Extent: 0.05 cubic feet (1 folder)
Identification: MS 0257

Biographical/Historical Note

Charles Rinaldo Floyd (October 14, 1797-March 22, 1845) was a noted duelist, soldier, and painter. Floyd was born to General John Floyd of Autosee Battle fame in the War of 1812, and Isabella Maria Hazzard at Fairfield Plantation in Camden County, Georgia. At the age of 19, he entered the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, but was expelled in 1817 for disobedience. Following his expulsion he joined the Marines and served until 1824 when he returned to Georgia with his new wife, Catherine Sophia Powell. Floyd then accepted the appointment as aide de camp to his father, commander of the 1st Division of the Georgia Militia. He rose to the rank of brigadier general in the militia and assisted in the removal of the Creeks and Seminoles to reservations west of the Mississippi River. He passed his final years in Camden County painting, writing, and running his plantation of Bellevue.

Scope and Content Note

This collection includes an unbound manuscript of 213 pages of transcribed extracts of Floyd's letters to his father and grandfather from West Point and the marine barracks during 1816-1817, his European tour journal dated 1821, excerpts from his Bellevue diary from 1822-1845, as well as genealogical notes, an index of names, and copies of newspaper clippings regarding the Floyd family. Floyd's letters discuss in great detail the actions and conditions of soldiers and commanding officers at West Point and in the marines, along with accounts of the numerous duels and fights in which he participated. Floyd's flamboyant character and exploits are fascinating as he relates the courts martial and civil trials brought against him, as well as the circumstances of his expulsion from West Point. Several letters are to men whom Floyd is calling out for their cowardice. Floyd's European journal describes his visits to Liverpool and Paris, impressions of France's king, and the skulls he retrieved from Waterloo that had been "cleft by the sword." In his diary, kept from 1822 until his death in 1845, Floyd records activities at Fairfield and Bellevue Plantations, where he visited with friends and family, hunted, and painted.

Index Terms

Bellevue Plantation (Camden County, Ga.)
Fairlawn Plantation (Camden County, Ga.)
Floyd family.
Floyd, Charles Rinaldo, 1797-1845.
Letters (correspondence)
Military cadets--New York (State)--West Point--Correspondence--19th century.
Plantation life--Georgia--Camden County.
United States Military Academy--History--19th century.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

The papers were collected in 1957 by family members.

Preferred Citation

[item identification] Charles Rinaldo Floyd papers, MS 257, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Georgia Foster Fawcett, 1968.


Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Georgia Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Division of Library and Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Georgia Historical Society as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.


Encoding funded by a 2012 Documenting Democracy grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.