Finding aid for the John S. McMillin papers 0003

USC Libraries Special Collections
Doheny Memorial Library 206
3550 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles, California, 90089-0189

Title: John S. McMillin papers
Collection number: 0003
Contributing Institution: USC Libraries Special Collections
Language of Material: English
Physical Description: 0.42 Linear feet 1 box
Date: 1855-1893, undated
Abstract: Letters, documents, testimony regarding Capt. John S. McMillin, his command of the Union steamer "Silver Wave" during the Civil War, and his steam capstan patent.
creator: McMillin, John S.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], John S. McMillin papers, Collection no. 0003, Special Collections, USC Libraries, University of Southern California

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Biographical note

John S. McMillin was the owner of a transport ship, the "Silver Wave" that was pressed into service on the Missisippi River from 1861-1863. McMillin also invented a steam powered capstan during this period, which was patented in 1867.

Scope and Contents

Letters, documents, testimony regarding Capt. John S. McMillin, his command of the Union steamer "Silver Wave" during the Civil War, and his steam capstan patent. A detailed inventory of each document is included in the box.


Donated by Mrs. Philip D. Terry, Jr.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

McMillin, John S. -- Archives
Silver Wave (Transport ship). -- Archives
Capstan--United States--History--19th century--Archival resources
Legal documents
Patents--United States--History--19th century--Archival resources
Sea control--History--19th century--Archival resources
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Archival resources

Box 1, Folder 1

Letters of reference and testimony in behalf of Captain John S. McMillin 1863

Scope and Content

Includes a letter from General Ulysses S. Grant to Brigadier General R. Allen (signed copy, dated July 25, 1863).
Box 1, Folder 2

War orders to the steamer Silver Wave, Capt. J.S. McMillin, commander 1862-1863

Physical Description: 32 items.

Scope and Content

Military orders to Captain McMillin aboard the SIlver Wave.
Box 1, Folder 3

Petitions for reimbursement for services by and repairs to the Silver Wave. 1862-1870

Scope and Content

Papers and letters relative to petition to Congress by McMillin for confirmation of award made to him in 1863 for extra-hazardous service while mastering the Silver Wave on the Mississippi in the service of General Grant.
Box 1, Folder 4

U.S. Patent Office documents relative to J.S. McMillin's "Improvement in applying steam power to the capstan of steamboats..." 1866-1867

Box 1, Folder 5

Court decrees, briefs, injunction, etc. relative to infringements of steam capstan patent 1867-1881

Box 1, Folder 6

Correspondence re steam capstan patent 1876

Box 1, Folder 7

"SIlver Wave" memos and public announcements 1855, 1863, 1876

Box 1

Realia 1893, undated

Scope and Content

Hand painted fan; souvenir badge of the Grand Army of the Republic.