Coast Surveyors assumed important combat roles during the Civil War, serving as topographers, reconnaissance specialists, scouts, intelligence officers, and combat hydrographers.

For a contemporary record of combat mapping during the Civil War, see the war record of Frederick Dorr and John Donn.

Browse biographical vignettes of Coast Surveyors, listed below.
Wampler, John Morris

Middle Initial: M.


Branch: Army

Theater: Western

Related: MS, TN, SC

Bio: J. Morris Wampler joined the U.S. Coast Survey in 1847 at the age of 17. In 1861, he left to serve as a topographical engineer for the Confederacy. He began the war as a line officer, and finished as a engineer officer. During his service, he created detailed maps of field fortifications while traveling with the Army of the Mississippi. He also served as the chief engineer for the Army of Tennessee. He was killed on August 17, 1863, at Battery Wagner, Charleston Harbor, during a Union naval bombardment.


Office of Coast Survey
Historical Map and Chart Collection
Web site owner: NOAA's Office of Coast Survey