John U. Pettit Papers
S 1058, OBC 62
1840-1879, bulk 1850-1853
1 folder, 1 oversized folder

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Processed by: Christina Baich, November 2005

Biographical Note:

John Upfold Pettit was born on September 11, 1820, in Fabius, Onondaga County, New York. His father was George Pettit, and he had a brother named Milton Howard. He attended Hamilton College (Clinton, NY) and Union College (Schenectady, NY) graduating in 1839. Pettit moved to Wabash County, Indiana, and was admitted to the bar in 1841. He married Julia Brenton in 1858, with whom he had six children. He fought in the 75th Regiment of the Indiana Volunteers during the Civil War. He helped organize the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphan home in Knightstown, Rush County, Indiana, in 1863. Pettit was a law professor at Indiana University (1869-1870); U.S. consul to Maranham, Brazil (1850-1853); a judge in the 11th Circuit (1853-1854), 22nd Circuit (1873), and 27th Circuit (1873-1879) Courts. He also served in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1855 to 1861. While a U.S. Representative, he was chairman of the Committee on Expenditures in the Post Office Department. Pettit was speaker of the State House of Representatives in 1865. John Upfold Pettit died on March 21, 1881, in Wabash, Indiana. He is buried in Falls Cemetery.

Shepherd, Rebecca A., Charles W. Calhoun, Elizabeth Shanahan-Shoemaker, and Alan F. January, comp. A Biographical Directory of the Indiana General Assembly, Volume 1, 1816-1899. Indianapolis: The Select Committee on the Centennial History of the Indiana General Assembly, 1980.

Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. United States Congress. Nov. 2005 <>.

Scope and Content Note:

The collection consists of letters between John Upfold Pettit and his father, George Pettit, and his brother, Milton Howard Pettit. There is also a speech given by John Upfold Pettit and three newspapers.

Item Listing:

Folder 1.  Letters and speech, 1840-1879
1840 Oct. 23	John Upfold Pettit to George Pettit, ALS
1850 Oct. 21	Graham N. Fitch to John Upfold Pettit, ALS
1851 Jan. 18	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1851 Feb. 24	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1851 Mar. 17	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1851 Apr. 25	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1851 Aug. 2	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1851 Nov. 23	John Upfold Pettit to Howard Pettit, ALS
1852 Aug. 17	George Upfold Pettit to John Upfold Pettit, ALS
1853 May 18	John Upfold Pettit to George Pettit, ALS
1879 May 7	Answer to the Toast, “The Old Psi Upsilon” by Hon. John U. Pettit.
OBC 62
1 Folder.  Newspapers, 1797-1865
1797 Jan 16	The Gazette and Daily Advertiser
1812 Feb 13	American Standard
1865 Jan 13	Savannah Republican

Collection Information:

Size of Collection:

1 folder, 1 oversized folder

Collection Dates:

1797-1879, bulk 1850-1853


Mr. H. C. Petit, 24 January 1933

Access: This collection is open for research.



Reproduction Rights:

Permission to reproduce, exhibit, or publish material in this collection must be obtained from the Manuscript Section, Indiana State Library.  Possession of a reproduction from an Indiana State Library collection does not constitute permission for use.

Language Materials are entirely in English

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