Massie, Josiah C. (1816–1879)

By: Jennifer Eckel

Type: Biography

Published: May 10, 2011

Dr. Josiah Camillis Massie, physician, Confederate officer, and planter, was born in Winchester, Virginia, to Josiah Massie, Sr., and Elizabeth (Ball) Massie in 1816. Massie migrated to Texas before 1850, arriving first in Anderson, in Grimes County. He lived for a time in Fort Bend County, before settling in Harris County, where he bought a plantation east of Houston. In 1854 Massie wrote and published, A Treatise on the Eclectic Southern Practice of Medicine, published in Philadelphia, to introduce physicians to the practice of medicine on the frontier. Active in Democratic politics in Harris County, Massie withdrew from a race for the state legislature in 1858 in favor of a position teaching medicine. He reportedly married three times; his first two marriages involved the Dixon family in Mississippi. According to some genealogical sources, he married Mrs. Harriet Dixon in Hinds County or in Copiah County in Mississippi and subsequently married her daughter, Louisa Matilda Dixon, with whom he had a daughter. In 1851 Massie, a widower, married Messiniah Elizabeth (Sessums) Conger in Houston. They had two children.

On November 11, 1861, Massie was mustered into service with the Confederate Army as a lieutenant colonel of a six-month regiment created for the defense of Galveston. The Ninth Texas Infantry "Nichols's" (also called "Massie's" or "Tate's") Regiment remained in place near Galveston and was not involved in any engagements before it was mustered out on April 17, 1862. Although many of the regiment's soldiers went on to become members of Waul's Texas Legion, Massie's service ended with the decommissioning of his regiment.

Following the war, Dr. Massie continued to practice medicine and manage his business concerns in Galveston and his plantation in Harris County, at the confluence of Buffalo Bayou and Greens Bayou. He died on his plantation outside of Houston in 1879.

Descendants of Dr. Josiah Camillis Massie (, accessed January 13, 2011. Karen McCann Hett, "Company I, Ninth (Nichols') Regiment, Texas Infantry, Also Called the Fifth Texas Volunteer Infantry, Galveston, 1861" (, accessed January 13, 2011.

  • Health and Medicine
  • Physicians and Surgeons
  • General Practitioners
Time Periods:
  • Civil War

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this entry.

Jennifer Eckel, “Massie, Josiah C.,” Handbook of Texas Online, accessed July 03, 2022,

Published by the Texas State Historical Association.

May 10, 2011

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