Skip to main content

T. J. Peddy Collection

Identifier: MC 36

Scope and Contents

One of Peddy's major interests was the Creek Indians in Georgia and Alabama. He compiled an extensive collection of typescripts or photocopies of materials dealing with the Creeks, primarily from National Archives microfilm as well as from The American State Papers, Peter Brannon's files at the Alabama Department of Archives & History, Emory University Special Collections in regard to the Asbury Mission, and newspapers in the case of the Creek War. These are hand bound and labeled as follows: Creek Letters, January 1832-1849 (19 volumes); Creek Wars, 1835-1837 (1 volume); Creek Letters, Investigations of General D.B. Mitchell (1 volume); Capers-Crowell Controversy and Asbury Mission (1 volume); and Letters of John Floyd (1 volume). These are essential primary documents for understanding the complexity of Creek diplomacy and the controversies surrounding their removal from Georgia and Alabama.

Peddy compiled 27 hand bound volumes entitled “Steamboats on the Chattahoochee River, 1832-1902”, an extensive record of primary material about riverboats and river navigation on the Chattahoochee as seen from Columbus. He made typescripts of all the newspaper articles on the topic from the Columbus Enquirer and other newspapers.

Since John H. Martin did not have access to the Enquirer for years 1835 & 1836, he could not include the marriages and deaths for those years in his history, Columbus , Georgia , 1827-1865, an important source for genealogists. Joe Peddy was able to extract this information from these years and compiled them in a volume entitled “Marriages and Deaths from the Columbus Enquirer, 1835-1836.” His “Columbus and the Civil War” contains excerpts from Columbus newspapers, January 7, 1862 – April 17, 1866, of articles dealing with the war effort, industrial activities, hospitals, local morale and attitudes, defenses of the city, the actions of federal troops during Reconstruction, and incidents involving Freedmen. It also includes typescripts and photocopied excerpts from the Official Records of the War of the Rebellion concerning the Battle of Columbus and excerpts from student papers produced for Joseph B. Mahan.

His “Springer Opera House, 1871,” replicates articles relating to the construction and opening of the Springer Opera House, August 9, 1870 – December 31, 1871. Another of his hand bound volumes, “The Christian Commonwealth”, provides transcriptions of newspaper articles about this utopian colony, November 24, 1896 – October 13, 1903, from its founding until its ending in receivership. Christian Socialists established the community in the area of Midland, Georgia. Peddy's volume also includes W. C. Woodall articles concerning this utopian venture, reprints of articles from the Georgia Historical Quarterly, maps of its location, and a copy of the deed concerning the sale of the land.

Peddy created transcripts of several old series of columns which focused on Columbus history. “Newspaper Articles on the Woolfolk, Camp, and Milton Controversy,” (January 28, 1832-November 2, 1833, & September 3, 1887) details the duel of General (Georgia militia) Sowell Woolfolk and Major Joseph T. Camp, which resulted in the death of Woolfolk, and the subsequent murder of Camp by John Milton and Milton's trial. A series of columns entitled “Olden Days in Columbus” by Thomas J. Jackson describe Columbus from 1842 to 1856 in some detail. Reminiscences of Columbus by John E. Lamar, was a column that ran in the Columbus Enquirer-Sun from September 20, 1891, until November 15, 1891. Lamar had lived in Columbus from 1829 until 1860. He dealt with the early progress of the city, the Creek Indian war, public roads, buildings, politics, the visit of President Martin Van Buren, the Palace mills, currency, the old fields school, and the first fairs. Transcriptions of Columbus Enquirer-Sun, January 5, 1896, give an extensive chronology of events that year. “The Unwritten History of Columbus, Told Most Interestingly by Mr. (A.O.) Blackmar,” published as 8 articles in the Columbus Ledger, depicts the river, the town, the downtown buildings, James S. Calhoun who became Territorial Governor of New Mexico, the 1st Presbyterian Church, Wilson's raid, the confrontation between local whites and black soldiers during Reconstruction, criminals, other incidents, etc. “Our Town” consists of 7 volumes, with an index, of W. C. Woodall's columns which appeared in the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, from 1963-1971.


  • 1817-1971

Biographical / Historical

Thomas Joseph (Joe) Peddy was born in in 1910 in Loachpoka, Lee County, Alabama. He died in 1990, and is buried there as well. According to the Auburn University archives website, he received a Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering from Alabama Polytechnic Institute (now Auburn University) in 1931 and a Bachelor's degree in Aeronautical Engineering from there in 1932. He worked for Eastern Air Lines from 1947 until 1975 when he retired to Columbus, Georgia, then collected research materials on historical subjects relating to East Alabama and West Georgia until his death in 1990. His modus operandi was to collect all the information he could find relating to a particular topic, especially from newspapers, and then to create typescripts or photocopy the sources and to bind and distribute them to various libraries and repositories in the area. His works serve as an excellent source of information on a wide range of topics.


4 Linear Feet : 4 cubic foot boxes

Language of Materials


Merrell, Jessie
2022 January
Language of description
Script of description
Edition statement
Last Revised January 2022 Revised September 15, 2020

Repository Details

Part of the Columbus State University Archives and Special Collections Repository

4225 University Ave
Columbus Georgia 31907 United States