Francis Land Galt

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Dr. Francis Land Galt (1833–1915) was the surgeon and acting paymaster of the famed Confederate raider CSS Alabama. He was physician for an expedition of John Randolph Tucker that explored the headwaters of the Amazon River in the 1870s. His father, Dr. John (Jno) Minson Galt, was a major in the United States Army and later in the Confederate States Army.[1] His sister Emily Galt is the subject of a famous ghost story at Augusta, Georgia.[2]


Galt was born at Norfolk, Virginia. His father J. M. Galt was a grandson of James Galt and Mary Taylor (of Orange County, Virginia, of same family as President Zachary Taylor). J. M. Galt was educated for a physician, but was given an appointment in the U.S. army by President John Tyler in the Ordinance Bureau. He served at Augusta Arsenal, Georgia and Apalachicola Arsenal in Florida. Later, he joined the Confederate army as Major in the Commissary Department and commanded the post at Lynchburg, Virginia.[3]

Dr. Francis L. Galt's mother Anne White Land was the daughter of Francis Mosley Land, a wealthy and prominent plantation owner who built the Francis Land House in Princess Anne County (merged into the city of Virginia Beach in 1963). Dr. Galt served with the Confederate army as a surgeon.[1] He served on the CSS Sumter and CSS Alabama, under Captain Raphael Semmes. After the loss of the Alabama at Cherbourg, France, he drifted back to Norfolk, Virginia in July 1864, and served with a naval battalion below Richmond, Virginia.[3] He surrendered and paroled at Appomattox in 1865.

Dr. Francis L. Galt's sword

Afterward he became Admiral John Randolph Tucker's physician and first explored the Amazon River. His work The Indians of Peru appeared in the Smithsonian Institution in 1877. It is considered one of the first creditable ethnographies of Amazonian Indians published in the United States and symbolized a new dimension developing in the relations between the U.S. and Peru.[4]

Galt returned to Virginia in 1875 and practiced as a physician in Upperville, Virginia until his death.


  1. ^ a b "Genealogy - Francis L. Galt - Lucy Randolph - John M. Galt - Upperville, Virginia". Retrieved 12 June 2015.
  2. ^ Hendricks, Austin. Hauntings on Campus.
  3. ^ a b Ege, Thompson (1911). History and genealogy of the Ege family in the United States, 1738–1911. Harrisburg, Pa.: The Star Printing Company.
  4. ^ Clayton, Lawrence (1999). Peru and the United States: The Condor and the Eagle.