The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society’s January Meeting’s Speaker Robert Maffitt, , great grandson of Captian John Newland Maffitt
- Published on Wednesday, 16 January 2013 17:13
- Written by Super User
The Federal Point Historic Preservation Society will hold its monthly meeting on Monday, January 21, 7:30 pm at the Federal Point History Center, 1121-A North Lake Park Blvd., adjacent to Carolina Beach Town Hall.
Our speaker this month will be Robert Maffitt, great grandson of Captian John Newland Maffitt. He will talk about Maffitt’s career as a Confederate Naval officer, blockade runner, and privateer. Born in New York of Irish parents Maffit was raised by his Uncle, Dr. William Maffit in Fayetteville, North Carolina. In 1832, at the age 13, he entered the United States Navy as a midshipman. By 1843 he was a Lieutenant assigned to the hydrographic survey. Among his assignments was the survey of the waters around Wilmington, NC. In 1857, Maffitt was placed in command of the brig USS Dolphin and ordered to capture pirates and slavers in the West Indies. On August 21, 1858, Dolphin captured the slaver Echo with 318 Africans on board and sent her into Charleston; the liberated slaves were later sent back to Africa. With the coming of the Civil War he resigned his position in the United States Navy to become General Robert E. Lee’s naval aide. By August 1862 he was in command of the CSS Florida. After a career that involved blockade running into and out of heavily guarded Mobile Bay. In 1864 he was given command of the CSS Albemarle in defense of the Roanoke River and town of Plymouth, NC. By the fall of 1864 he was back in Wilmington, commanding the CSS Owl and running the blockade. During his service to the Confederacy, Maffitt repeatedly ran the blockade to carry needed supplies and captured and destroyed more than seventy prizes worth $10 to $15 million. Robert “Bob” Maffitt lives in Wilmington, N.C. where he is known as “The Ambassador” because of his work in greeting tourist and welcoming them to Wilmington, N.C. as well as relating its colorful history.
His education was in mechanical engineering and Mechanical Design, Electro-Mechanical Drafting and Architectural-Structural Drafting.