Paymaster General Horatio Bridge, USN - Collection in the Navy Department Library

Biographical Note

Horatio Bridge was born in Augusta, Maine, on 8 April 1806, to James Bridge and his wife. Entering in 1821, Bridge graduated from Bowdoin College in the class of 1825 along with Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Bridge’s life-long friend, Nathaniel Hawthorne. Although trained as a lawyer, Bridge joined the US Navy in 1838 and served as Paymaster General during the Civil War. He retired in 1868 as a Paymaster with the rank of Commodore.

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of letters gathered by Paymaster General Horatio Bridge. The letters are chiefly correspondence to and from several Secretaries of the Navy, including Paul Hamilton, William Jones, Benjamin W. Crowninshield, Smith Thompson, John Branch, Levi Woodbury, Mahlon Dickerson, and George Bancroft. Correspondents include such prominent Navy officers as Isaac Chauncy, Oliver Hazard Perry, Hugh L. Campbell, David Porter, Thomas Macdonough, Thomas ap Catesby Jones, and Matthew Calbraith Perry.

The collection is organized in two series. Series I contains the bulk of the letters in a chronological arrangement. Series II holds several oversize items. In this series are an 1823 certificate of guardianship of Stephen Borders signed by the Governor of Georgia; an 1814 letter to President James Madison concerning Lieutenant William S. Cox, signed by Richard Dale and several Navy officers; letters from the Mayor and City Council of Savannah and petitions from the District of Maine seeking protection during the War of 1812.

Restrictions on Use:
Manuscripts are unavailable for loan and must be consulted in the library. Photocopying of manuscripts in this collection is prohibited, though the use of digital cameras without flash by researchers to reproduce materials is permitted. The use of personal scanners by non-library staff personnel must be approved by the reference staff on a document-by-document basis (Reference: Naval History and Heritage Command Instruction [NAVHISTCENTINST] 5070.1C.).

Preferred Citation

Collection of Horatio Bridge, Navy Department Library, Naval History and Heritage Command, Washington, D.C.

Subject Headings (LCSH)

United States. Navy — History — 19th century.
United States — History — War of 1812.
United States. Navy — Officers — Correspondence.
United States. Department of the Navy.

Related Materials

The George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections and Archives of the Bowdoin College Library holds a collection of Horatio Bridge’s papers.

Box and Folder List

Box 1

Series I: Letters, 1791-1845

22 June 183620 October 1836
1. 1791-1796    
  a. Deed, Isham Thompson to Collin Mud   January 1791
  b. Letter regarding the Peace Treaty with Algiers   1796
       
2. 1802-1809    
  a. Report on the fortifications and garrison at Portofarina, Tunisia   February 1803
  b. Letter to Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton regarding the resignation of his appointment by Midshipman Charles Chaveaux   24 October 1809
       
3. 1810-1819    
  a. Letter from Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton to Dr. Ewell   9 June 1811
  b. Letter from Captain Isaac Chauncey to Lieutenant James E. McDonald   18 June 1811
  c. Letter to Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton from W. Stephens regarding the appointment of Midshipman Josiah Tattnall   17 February 1812
  d. Letter to Colonel Fenwicke from E. Jackson regarding the appointment of Midshipman Josiah Tattnall [enclosure to item I.3.c.]   19 February 1812
  e. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton from Speaker of the House Henry Clay petitioning for John Barney’s appointment as Naval Storekeeper   16 November 1812
  f. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton from Oliver Hazard Perry regarding a Midshipman appointment   18 November 1812
  g. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton from Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States Joseph Story regarding a Midshipman appointment   8 December 1812
  h. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton from Oliver Hazard Perry regarding a Midshipman appointment   30 December 1812
  i. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones from Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry regarding a command for Captain William Cornett   2 February 1813
  j. Letter from the Commanding Officer of USS United States to Acting Midshipman Price   9 September 1813
  k. Captain David Porter, USS Essex, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones regarding Midshipman John M. Maury   19 July 1814
  l. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy regarding appointment of a Midshipman   18 November 1814
  m. Letter from Oliver Hazard Perry to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield   28 May 1815
  n. Letter from Thomas MacDonough, Commandant of the Portsmouth Navy Yard, to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield regarding a Midshipman appointment   8 September 1815
  o. Letter from David Porter to B. Homans, Esq., regarding a Midshipman warrant for Benjamin Clapp   11 October 1815
  p. Letter from Daniel D. Tompkins to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield regarding a promotion to Sailing Master   7 February 1816
  q. Letter from Thomas MacDonough to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield   10 March 1816
  r. Envelope for forwarded correspondence from David Porter to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield   13 September 1816
  s. Letter from Secretary of State James Monroe to the secretary of the Navy regarding a Midshipman appointment for James Mustin   8 November 1816
  t. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield regarding a Midshipman   26 January 1817
  u. Letter from Speaker of the House Henry Clay to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield regarding appointment of a Midshipman   7 February 1817
  v. Letter from Captain Isaac Hull to the Secretary of the Navy regarding a subordinate   17 November 1818
  w. Letter from R. Henley to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding a promotion   27 February 1819
       
4. 1820-1826    
  a. Letter from Thomas MacDonough to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding the reappointment of a Midshipman   15 February 1820
  b. Letter from David Porter to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding W. Spence   10 May 1820
  c. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding Midshipman warrant for W. Kirk   30 August 1821
  d. Letter from William Towndes to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding a Midshipman warrant   19 February 1822
  e. Letter from T. Clayton to W. Van Dyke regarding a Midshipman appointment   27 February 1822
  f. Letter from David Porter to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding a Midshipman appointment for W. Wattle   8 March 1822
  g. Navy Department, H.R. 46, 19th Congress, Appropriations Bill, with corrections   13 January 1826
  h. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Samuel Southard from Colonel Francis Kinloch Huger, US Army, of Charleston, South Carolina, regarding the application for an appointment of his son, Francis Huger, as a Midshipman   20 June 1826
 
5. 1831-1838  
  a. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy John Branch regarding a Midshipman appointment   1 May 1831
  b. Letter from A. Stevenson to the Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury regarding a Midshipman appointment   20 July 1831
  c. Letter to the Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury regarding a Midshipman appointment   24 October 1831
  d. Letter from the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson to S. Smith regarding the appointment of Purser   10 July 1834
  e. Letter from U.S. Representative Henry Alexander Wise of Virginia to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding the appointment of B. Franklin Hudgins as a Midshipman   24 February 1835
  f. Letter from a Mr. Marcy to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding a Midshipman appointment for George Forsyth   24 February 1835
  g. Letter from U.S. Representative John Young Mason of Virginia to Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding a recommendation for an appointment   3 March 1835
  h. Letter from U.S. Representative Isaac Toucey of Connecticut to Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding inquiries from Judge Hooker of Connecticut   14 April 1836
  i. Letter from S. A. Street to President Andrew Jackson regarding an appointment as a Purser, forwarded by President Jackson to the Navy Department (President Jackson’s initials on back of letter)  
  j. Letter from the Second Comptroller of the Treasury, A. K. Parris, to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson (missing fragment not found with collection)   24 August 1836
  k. Letter from the Commandant of the Charlestown Navy Yard to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding the appointment of Isaac Whitney as a Sailmaker  
  l. Letter from a Mr. Johnson to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding an appointment to the Marine Corps   29 August 1837
  m. Letter from the Commandant of the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Charles Stewart, as former Commander of USS Franklin, to the Secretary of the Navy Mahlon Dickerson regarding the appointment of Captain Harris, USMC   5 March 1838
6. 1840-1845  
  a. Letter from the Commandant of the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Charles Stewart, as former Commander of USS Constitution, to John Candler, regarding the latter’s service on board USS Constitution   3 December 1840
  b. Letter from J. Hamline to the Secretary of the Navy George E. Badger regarding a Midshipman appointment   26 April 1841
  c. Letter from the Commander of the U.S. Pacific Squadron, Commodore Thomas Catesby Jones, to Mr. C. Lipscomb regarding a transfer of his son   21 March 1842
  d. Letter from Commandant of the New York Navy Yard, Matthew C. Perry, to the Secretary of the Navy Abel P. Upshur regarding the appointment of Nicholas Vincent as a Master Spar Maker   4 April 1842
  e. Letter from Jefferson Davis to the Secretary of the Navy George Bancroft regarding the commission of James Kemp Sprague in the US Marine Corps   13 June 1845
  f. Letter from C. Cushing to Horatio Bridge, Navy Department   29 August 1845
  g. Letter to President Tyler regarding the promotion of Midshipman Wallace W. Dowd   15 October 1845
7. Undated  
  a. Letter regarding Midshipman appointment    

Box 2 (Oversize)

Series II: Oversize, 1803-1834

8. Report by William Eaton, U.S. Consul at Tunis, regarding Tunisian forces   1 June 1803
9. Letter from the Committee of Safety of Bristol, Rhode Island, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones regarding the removal of Navy gunboats from Rhode Island   17 March 1813
10. Letter from City Council of Savannah to the Secretary William Jones of the Navy   20 March 1813
11. Letter from City Council of Savannah to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones   24 March 1813
12. Letter from George Jones, Mayor of Savannah, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones   25 March 1813
13. Letter from George Jones, Mayor of Savannah, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones  
14. Letter from the City of Portland, District of Maine, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones   8 May 1813
15. Letter from S. Hambleton, Prize Agent, to the Secretary of the Navy William Jones regarding prize money for capture of British Fleet on Lake Erie   18 May 1814
16. Letter from the Secretary of the Navy William Jones to Dr. Edward Cutbush, Surgeon of the Navy Hospital, regarding Navy pensioner   29 June 1814
17. Memorial from various citizens of Philadelphia to President Madison regarding William S. Cox   1 December 1814
18. Letter from Captain Charles Morris, Commander of USS Congress, to the Secretary of the Navy Benjamin W. Crowninshield regarding ship’s officers   26 November 1815
19. Letter from Senator Elijah Hunt Mill of Massachusetts to the Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson regarding a Midshipman warrant for Joseph George Blake   15 January 1821
20. Letter from Lieutenant Matthew C. Perry to Secretary of the Navy Smith Thompson, regarding the West African Squadron   11 August 1822
21. Certificate of Guardianship for Stephen Borders, Superior Court of Jackson County, Georgia   1823
22. Letter from Treasury Department to the Secretary of the Navy Samuel Southard regarding Captain David Porter   31 October 1825
23. Letter from Commodore J. D. Elliot to the Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury, request for harbor charts   24 December 1832
24. Letter from Thomas Jones of Charleston, South Carolina, to the Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury   22 June 1833
25. Letter from Commodore J. D. Elliot to Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury   8 July 1833
26. Letter from J. Watson to Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury   3 May 1834
27. Letter from Commodore J. D. Elliott to Secretary of the Navy Levi Woodbury   27 June 1834
28. Petitions (x2) from the District of Maine to President James Madison   Undated
29. Letter   Undated
30. Manuscript   Undated