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The biography of this modest hero has never been written. I give the following brief sketch prepared by the accomplished Mrs. J. N. Maffitt, at the time of her distinguished husband's decease, who is now writing a more extended memoir of his career.

John Newland Maffitt was born at sea on the 22d of February, 1819. His parents were Rev. John Newland Maffitt and Ann Carnicke, his wife. Rev. Mr. Maffitt, having determined to emigrate to America, left Ireland with his wife and family late in January or early in February, and landed in New York on the 21st of April, 1819, his son having been born on the passage. Their first home was in Connecticut. When John was about five years old, his uncle, Dr. William Maffitt, who had accompanied them to America, visited his brother, Rev. Mr. Maffitt, and finding him in straitened circumstances, begged to adopt their son, and on the consent of his parents, Dr. Maffitt brought his nephew to Fayetteville, N. C. Some years were passed in this happy home of his boyhood, when his uncle determined to send him to school at White Plains, N. Y. As a little stripling, he started by the old-time stage coach, with his ticket tacked to his jacket, and on his arrival much curiosity was shown to see the little boy who had come alone from his distant southern home. He remained at this school, under Professor Swinburn, until he was thirteen years old, when his father's friends obtained for him a commission as midshipman in the United States Navy. His first orders were to the St. Louis, then at Pensacola Navy-Yard. His second sea orders were to the Constitution, the flagship of the squadron, commanded by Commodore Elliott, then fitting out for the Mediterranean. This cruise lasted three years and six months, and it was during that time that most of the incidents related in the Nautilers took place. Having been appointed aide to Commodore Elliott, the young midshipman had many advantages not otherwise obtainable. He was next ordered to the frigate Macedonian as past midshipman, and it was while in port at Pensacola, Fla., that he had his first experience of ‘yellow jack,’ and came near losing his life. His first independent command was the Gallatin. He commanded also the brig Dolphin and several others. He was engaged, under Professor Bache, for some years on the coast survey, and was of great service to the professor, which the latter was not slow to acknowledge. Much of their work was in the harbors of Nantucket, Charleston, Wilmington, and Savannah. A channel in the harbor of Charleston still bears his name. In one of the numerous published sketches this tribute is paid to him:

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