James Macmaster Codman (1831-1917)


This series includes diaries, financial records, and literary papers belonging to James Macmaster Codman (1831-1917). Folder 65 contains a travel log from a voyage to Calcutta and back in 1852 aboard the "Cato." The log includes descriptions of Calcutta and of the voyage and conclude with an appendix concerning Calcutta. Codman writes in a lively, literate style, often punctuating his prose with quotations by other authors and poets. He pays close attention to detail, and this makes his descriptions of India and the sea voyage interesting to read. Of additional interest are the few pen and ink sketches which Codman has made to illustrate his text. Folder 66 contains a travel log from a trip to Europe and Crimea from 1854 through 1856. The journal is an account of the two year trip which included a visit to the front lines of the Crimean War zone. The captain of the vessel which sailed to Crimea was Capt. John Codman (1814-1900). Although this diary is a rather straightforward travel log, it is interesting to read because of Codman’s lively style and his attention to detail. Of interest are comments that he makes throughout the journal about artists and paintings that he has seen.

Folder 67 contains a personal account book from 1852 through 1889 tracking household accounts and personal expenses. It includes entries for food, clothing, domestic help, personal items, and entertainment. Folder 68 contains the volume "Journal of a Cruise in the West Indies on the Yacht ‘Julia’ February and March 1889" by Dr. George B. Shattuck and with a portfolio of photographs and sketches by James M. Codman. It is a bound, typescript volume of 117 pages. The illustrations described on the title page are missing from this volume. The first 109 pages include a straightforward description of the journey, including descriptions of life on board the yacht and of places visited. The last few pages, however, are titled "General Reflections," and they include comments about what the role of the United States should be in the West Indies and the "commercial future" of the islands.


Descriptive Terms

artists (visual artists)
paintings (visual works)
trade (function)
financial records

Physical Description

4 folders

Collection Code


Collection Name

John Codman (1898-1989) family papers

Reference Code



Kolkata (West Bengal, India)
West Indies [archipelago]

Record Details


Codman, James Macmaster, 1831-1917

Material Type

financial records

Other People

Codman, John, 1814-1900
Shattuck, George B.

Descriptive Terms

Crimean War, 1853-1856

Description Level




Materials in this series are arranged alphabetically by subseries and chronologically within each subseries.