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LAMAR, CHARLES A. L., 1824-1865.
Charles A. L. Lamar papers, 1857-1865

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322



Permanent link: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/8zjhx

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Lamar, Charles A. L., 1824-1865.
Title: Charles A. L. Lamar papers, 1857-1865
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 400
Extent: 1 microfilm reel (MF)
Abstract:Microfilm copy of the papers of Charles Augustus Lafayette Lamar, prominent banker and business man of Savannah and Augusta, Georgia and New York City.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Unrestricted access.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.

Related Materials in Other Repositories

Gazaway Bugg Lamar papers, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, University of Georgia Libraries.


Loaned for microfilming, 1963.


[after identification of item(s)], Charles A.L. Lamar papers, Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library, Emory University.


Processed by MRD, August 1965

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Collection Description

Biographical Note

Charles Augustus Lafayette Lamar (April 11, 1824-April 16, 1865) was the son of Gazaway Bugg Lamar, socially prominent banker and business man of Savannah and Augusta, Georgia and New York City, with widespread interests in real estate, finance, cotton (both as planter and commission merchant), shipping, slave trading, and fertilizer. Charles's mother, Jane Meek Cresswell Lamar, was drowned along with five of her children when the Pulaski's boiler burst off the Carolina coast on June 14, 1838. Charles and his father were among the 50 (out of 150) passengers who survived. Following in his father's footsteps, Charles became a first-rate business man and by 1859 he had held many responsible offices and participated in numerous social, financial, and political enterprises. For example, he had been an active member of the Know Nothing party in the presidential campaign of 1856, but he later became an ardent member of the Southern Rights party. Even before South Carolina seceded, he advised the young men of Chatham County to join a military corps. He was an organizer and lieutenant colonel of the 7th Georgia Battalion in which he served until it was merged into the 61st Georgia Infantry Regiment. He divided his time between blockade running in Savannah and military service and was killed at Columbus, Georgia in one of the last battles of the Civil War.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of a microfilm copy of twenty letters written between January 9, 1859 and December 26, 1861 by Charles A. L. Lamar to his father Gazaway Bugg Lamar. The correspondence is concerned with the buying and selling of cotton, the selling of guano in several southeastern states and the procurement of cargo for certain ships. A large part of the correspondence for 1859 is related to the yacht Wanderer in which Lamar had important interests and which had, late in 1858, participated in "the last large-scale importation of African slaves." Lamar was on Jekyll Island, with a Battery, under General Mercer in 1861 and several letters written from there comment on his problems and on General Mercer in particular. A deed, a telegram, and a memorandum are included in the papers.

Arrangement Note

Arranged in chronological order.

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Container List

Box Folder Content
MF1 1 1859 January 9: Seeking freight for the Lucy Thompson. States: "The 3 men were turned over for trial ... R. J. Moses of Columbus offered me his services in a very beautiful letter ... he to act as lawyer ... advises employment prudence and no violence and the manufacture of Public Opinion by the employment of a man North to collate every act of injustice done to Southerners through their slave property in the last ten years and to crowd the Savannah papers with these extracts."
MF1 2 1859 January 11: Telegram. About freight and buying middling cotton.
MF1 3 1859 January 12: He will buy cotton. States: "I have given Bonds for my appearance. I don't think they can do anything--the Yacht may be confiscated, but I hope not. What is there that I can do to make money enough to pay out? ... Let me in to the great Speculation but get it fixed so that we must make and can't lose."
MF1 4 1859 January 14: Would like to have bought cotton but feared his father's displeasure. States: "I am very much afraid the yacht will be confiscated--it is necessary in filing the answer to the libel, to deny the accusations under oath--or give bond for all the cost and refuse to answer upon the ground of implicating yourself."
MF1 5 1859 January 17: About buying good, middling cotton and holding for a rise in price. Is seeking a gardener who knows flowers as well as vegetables. States: "Mr. Ganahl is making a great ass of himself. I have no fears myself--I think all will go well. So far as trials are concerned [but?] I am afraid all the profits that are not absorbed in expenses - will be stolen. Tom Lamar has been selling them for nothing..."
MF1 6 1859 January 20: States: "The Wanderer case stands just as it did--no change--nor will there be any until after the meeting of Court--..."
MF1 7 1859 January 21: Urges his father to buy "the property of Prendergast" for himself and Burke. Thinks it worth $75,000 to $100,000 and may be purchased for $20 or $22,000. "Hiram Roberts is trying to buy ostensibly for the benefit of the widow ..."
MF1 8 1859 January 21: About buying and shipping cotton.
MF1 9 1859 January 24: Similar to above.
MF1 10 1859 January 25: Similar to above.
MF1 11 1859 May 11: Draft for $40,984.30
MF1 12 1859 September 6: American Guano Company (New York) to G. B. Lamar and Wm. W. Cheever. Contract signed for the company by S. Marshall, President, with Lamar and Cheever for the latter to have an agency to sell guano in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Florida, Alabama, and Tennessee to the extent of 100,000 tons for a period of 10 years.
MF1 13 1860 November 1: Concerns terms of contract with American Guano Company
MF1 14 1860 November 5: Discusses guano selling problems. States: "We shall have disunion certain if Lincoln is elected. I would not ask any favor of old Buchanan. I simply mentioned what Lloyd & Owens said and approved of it--Black can do it without consultation with the Prest--and would, I am assured, if he believed she was stolen--I am about to organize a Company--Gov. Brown approves of it, and says I can order the arms ... I hope Lincoln may be elected--I want dissolution and have I think contributed more than any man South." He wants a bookkeeper--asks father to send him one.
MF1 15 1860 November 26: Guano business. Purchase of arms. Secession sentiment. States: "If Georgia don't act promptly we, the military of Savannah, will throw her into revolution ..."
MF1 16 1861 December 3: Jekyl Island, concerned with erection of a Battery on Jekyl Island and his correspondence with General Mercer about the work. Mentions Commissioner Tattnall, Col. Wilson.
MF1 17 1861 December 13: Jekyl Island, about requisition for whiskey for the use of the "Mounted Rifles"
MF1 18 1861 December 18: Complains about the neglect of the Quartermaster and the unwillingness of the General to exact compliance with his orders. He will not sell his mares for less than $1,200.00 nor his Old Iron for less than a "fair price". He needs money to pay his negroes, etc.
MF1 19 1861 December 22: Thinks Lincoln's government could be "subjugated" if Great Britain would blockade and the Confederacy handle the land troops. He, however, does not now have nearly enough troops or equipment to defend Jekyl Island. He asked for a boat but was refused. He sends men to Brunswick for supplies, they get drunk, and get into trouble.
MF1 20 1861 December 24: He is sorry his message to Derry refusing his request for Reuben had given so much offense.
MF1 21 1861 December 26: He is displeased with the new officers elected in the Mounted Rifles and does not want them to control his horses and mules. He is now willing to sell "the Boys" for $1,000.00.
MF1 22 1865 July 1: Fragment
MF1 23 1857: Deed dated October 16, 1857. C. A. L. Lamar to G. B. Lamar, his father. Deed of Bargain and Sale. Land lots and wharves on the Savannah River in the City of Savannah, Georgia for $103,880.00.