James Longstreet collection
New Search | Return to Search Results | View/Save/Print PDF

James Longstreet collection

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Longstreet, James, 1821-1904.
Title: James Longstreet collection
Dates: 1862-1945
Extent: 0.05 cubic feet (1 folder)
Identification: MS 0498

Biographical/Historical Note

James Longstreet (1821-1904) was born in Edgefield District, South Carolina, on January 8, 1821. Following his father's death, he and his mother moved to Morgan County, Alabama. He attended West Point and graduated fifty-fourth of sixty-two in the Class of 1842.

Following West Point, Longstreet served in the U.S. Army until June 1, 1861, at which point he resigned. He was commissioned a Confederate Brigadier General on June 17, 1861, promoted to Major General on October 17, 1861, and Lieutenant General on October 22, 1862.

Longstreet was originally a Confederate division commander under Joseph E. Johnston. He gained Robert E. Lee's confidence after Seven Days and became Lee's most distinguished lieutenant following the death of Stonewall Jackson on May 10, 1863. While with Lee, Longstreet was blamed for the Confederate failure at Gettysburg. He was then sent to Georgia and did well at Chickamauga. He returned to Virginia in April 1864 and was with lee until Appomattox.

Following the Civil War, Longstreet was faced with creating a new life. He moved to New Orleans and became president of an insurance company and partner in a cotton-factorage house. Longstreet became Republican and joined the Radicals in New Orleans and Washington. Longstreet was appointed surveyor of customs in New Orleans by his persona friend, President Ulysses S. Grant. He also held several state offices which got him involved in many political battles in Louisiana. This continued to damage his already tarnished image among Southerners. He and his second wife spent a lot of their time trying to clear his reputation.

Longstreet was married twice. His first wife, Maria Louise Garland died and he married Helen Dortch on September 8, 1897. He and his second wife were married for six years until General Longstreet's death on January 2, 1904. Longstreet is buried in Alta Vista Cemetery in Gainesville, Georgia.

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains 14 items by and relating to General James Longstreet, including letters, receipts, and a speech. Two items relate to Civil War topics and the other items relate to his life following his military service. Also included is a printed copy of his speech, "McKinley and Gold Standard Versus Bryan, the Silver Standard, and the Mobocrats."

Index Terms

Gold standard.
Letters (correspondence)
Longstreet, Helen Dortch, -1962.
Longstreet, James, 1821-1904.
Maryland Heights (Md.)
Receipts (financial records)
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.

Administrative Information

Custodial History


Preferred Citation

[item identification], James Longstreet collection, MS 498, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information



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.

Container List

Item 1: Longstreet letter to Colonel Robert H. Chilton, 1862 Spetember
Announces the capture of Maryland Heights.
Item 2: Receipt to Longstreet for assessment by the Chickamauga Memorial Association, 1891 March 4
Item 3: O.S. Latrobe letter to Longstreet, 1897 October 30
Congratulates him on his appointment to Railroad Commission and his marriage.
Item 4: Letter from the National Volunteer Reserve, 1898 August 6
Item 5: J. Fraise Richard letter to Longstreet, 1898 November 29
Item 6: Mamie A. Mims letter to Longstreet, 1900 April 29
Asks for help in locating Alfred Ponce.
Item 7: Canceled check, 1901 September 18
Item 8: Longstreet letter to his son, James, Jr., 1903 February 6
Contains family news.
Item 9: Longstreet letter to his son Lee, 1903 October 25
Discusses leaving Washington.
Item 10: Helen Dortch Longstreet to Laure Beauregard Larendon, 1945 December 4
Item 11: Penciled note by General Longstreet, undated
Regarding action on the Potomac in Civil War involving Generals J.E.B. Stuart, Mosby, Lee, and Hooker.
Item 12: Calling card of General Chalmers of Mississippi
Item 13: Receipt to Longstreet as U.S. Marshall, 1881 December 31
Item 14: Speech made by Longstreet, undated
"McKinley and the Gold Standard Versus Bryan, the Silver Standard, and the Mobocrats,"