Josiah Tattnall papers
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Josiah Tattnall papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Tattnall, Josiah, 1795-1871.
Title: Josiah Tattnall papers
Dates: 1846-1861
Extent: 0.05 cubic feet (1 folder)
Identification: MS 1016

Biographical/Historical Note

Josiah Tattnall (1795-1871) was the son of Governor Josiah Tattnall and Harriet Fenwick Tattnall. At the age of 10, he was sent to London for his education, where he remained until he was sixteen. Upon his return, he was appointed midshipman in the U.S. Navy. He had attained the rank of Commander when he resigned in 1861 to return to Georgia. He was appointed Senior Flag Officer of the Georgia Navy. In 1862, with the rank of Captain CSN, he was in command of Confederate naval defenses in Virginia waters. He returned to Georgia in 1863 and took command of Georgia naval defenses with the rank of Commodore. He lived in Halifax, Nova Scotia, from 1866 until 1870, when he returned to Savannah as Inspector of the Port.

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of the papers of Josiah Tattnall. Included are receipts for interest on a bond from Peter Wiltberger, 1846-1850; a receipt from the Confederate States of America to the State of Georgia, 1861, listing arms and ammunition supplied by the CSA; a permit from the C.S. Naval Station in Savannah, 1860s, to leave the city on a railroad; and a letter from Tattnall to his daughter, Mary. In the letter, written from the U.S. Ship Powhatan off the river Peiho in 1859, Tattnall states he is expecting his successor and will return home soon. He also relates an incident when he went to the aid of a British squadron in the Peiho River.

Index Terms

Confederate States of America. Army. -- General subdivision--Supplies and stores.;
Georgia--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
Letters (correspondence)
Powhatan (Schooner)
Receipts (financial records)
Tattnall, Josiah, 1795-1871.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

Items 2 and 3 purchased from H.A. Schindler in Charleston, South Carolina.

Preferred Citation

[item identification], Josiah Tattnall papers, MS 1016, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Alexander A. Lawrence, 1976 (Item 1); Mary Adams Mason, 1970 (Item 4). Purchased, 1952 (Items 2-3).


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.

Separated Material

Artifacts were separated and cataloged with the Georgia Historical Society Artifacts Collection. View digital images of artifacts at the end of this collection inventory or search the Digital Image Catalog for further information.


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

Container List

Item 1: Receipts of Josiah Tattnall for interest on a bond from Peter Wiltberger, 1846-1850 ( 1.0 p. )
3 receipts on one paper; the fist is signed by Josiah Tattnall, the others by his attorneys.
Item 2: Confederate States of America to State of Georgia, 1861
List of arms and ammunition supplies by the CSA. On verso: "Com Tatnall Receipt for Arms 1861."
Item 3: Permit to leave the city on a railroad, 1860s ( 1.0 p. )
Issued from C.S. naval Station, Savannah, Ga. Form, not filled in.
Item 4: Josiah Tattnall letter to his daughter, Mary, 1859 July 24 ( 4.0 p. ) (Photocopy.)
Sent from U.S. Flag Ship Powhatan off the river Peiho. Is expecting his successor and will return home soon; relates the incident when he went to the aid of a British squadron in the Peiho River.
A-1016-001 Folding binoculars with inset signaling mirror and compass View online.
A-1016-002 Commodore Josiah Tattnall’s walking stick View online.