Verner Chaffin Family Papers

Verner Chaffin Family Papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Hargrett Manuscripts
Title: Verner Chaffin Family Papers
Dates: Bulk, 1940-1959
Dates: 1912-1974
Quantity: 3.2 Linear feet (2 cartons, 3 document boxes, 1 oversized box, 2 oversized folders C, 1 large poster)
Abstract:This collection consists of a variety of materials donated by the Chaffin family concerning the academic and professional lives of Dr. Emory Chaffin and his son Verner Chaffin. The majority of the materials detail the varied studies of Verner spanning from his high school and college graduations to materials collected as he attempted to learn Japanese after his enrollment in the U.S. Navy during World War 2. Also included are tourism materials collected by V. Chaffin during his time in Japan. In relation to Dr. Emory Chaffin, the collection contains materials related to his medical practice and licensing and his membership in the Freemasons. In addition, there are several large posters (Russian Propaganda and reproductions of watercolors depicting battle scenes recreated in Paramount's motion picture "Wake Island"). Misc. Items include: an early 20th century teacher’s grade book, plaques showing various Georgia colleges, a picture of a 1960s DAR banquet in Washington, D.C., and a press release detailing an architecture exhibition at Georgia Tech.
Coll. Number: ms2036
The collection contains materials written in English and Japanese with two books written in Italian.

Biographical/Historical Note

Dr. Emory E. Chaffin worked as a doctor in North Georgia from the early 1910s to the 1950s. He received his medical license from the Atlanta Medical College in 1912, and he was a distinguished community member of Toccoa, Georgia, throughout his life. In addition, he was a member of the Freemasons and a hobbyist who enjoyed painting. His son, Verner F. Chaffin, went on to become a noted Georgia lawyer and professor of law at the University of Georgia School of Law in the middle and late 20th century.


Chaffin Family Papers, 1912-1974. MS 2036. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Verner F. Chaffin (1918- ) was born in Georgia. He graduated as the Valedictorian from Toccoa High School in 1935 and went on to graduate summa cum laude from the University of Georgia in 1939 after transferring from Emory University. In 1942, received his L.L.B. from the University of Georgia School of Law. While at the University of Georgia, he joined many organizations, e.g., Gridiron and Sphinx, and served as president of both the Demosthenian Literary Society and the Mu Chapter of the Sigma Nu Fraternity. After completing his studies, he enrolled in the United States Navy. During his enlistment, he served as an intelligence officer and Japanese linguist during World War 2, where he was stationed in the Pacific arena, and the Korean War. In 1947, he began teaching law at the University of Alabama. In 1958, he returned to the UGA School of Law as a full professor. After teaching for 42 years, Chaffin retired in 1989, but continued working as an attorney. His specialties include wills and trusts, federal estate and gift taxation, future interests, estate planning, and administration of descendants’ estates and trusts. For his work in these areas, the State Bar of Georgia established the Verner F. Chaffin Career Service Award to recognize individuals with strong records of “outstanding, unselfish and dedicated service to the Fiduciary Law Section of the State Bar of Georgia, its members and the citizens of Georgia.” Though retired, Chaffin is still active in the Athens Community and with the UGA School of Law.


Chaffin Family Papers, 1912-1974. MS 2036. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

(2002) "The Chaffin Legacy," Georgia Law Advocate Magazine: Vol. 37: Iss. 1, Article 7.

State Bar of Georgia. "Verner F. Chaffin Career Service Award."


Arranged into 9 series by record type:

Series 1: Japanese Books

Series 2: US Naval Manuals, Instructions, and Publications

Series 3: V. Chaffin Personal WW2 Japan Memorabilia

Series 4: V. Chaffin School Memorabilia

Series 5: Dr. E. Chaffin Papers and Books

Series 6: Newspapers and Clippings

Series 7: Russian Propaganda Posters

Series 8: "Wake Island" Movie Watercolor Reproductions

Index Terms

Chaffin, E., M.D.
Chaffin, Verner
English language--Dictionaries--Japanese.
Japanese language--Dictionaries--English.
Japanese language--Readers.
Ledgers (account books)
Manuals (instructional materials)
Polyglot dictionaries.
Printed ephemera.
United States. Navy.
Universities and colleges--Miscellanea.
University of Georgia. -- Miscellanea
Wake Island, Battle of, Wake Island, 1941.
World War, 1939-1945--Japan.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Verner Chaffin Family Papers, 1912-1974. MS 2036. Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, The University of Georgia Libraries.

Related Material

The collection originally included sheet music, but that this material has been transferred to the sheet music collection.

Series Descriptions and Folder Listing


Japanese Books

21Japanese Dictionaries, Glossaries, and Indices, 194us-195us
Japanese Language Course Books, 194us-195us
Japanese Language Readers, 194us-195us
Japanese Name Books, 194us-195us
Children's Japanese Character Writing Workbooks, 194us-195us
Personal Japanese Language Workbooks of V. Chaffin, 194us-195us
Italian Language Books on Japan, 194us-195us
Misc. Japanese Books (Japanese and English), 194us-195us

WW2 US Naval Manuals, Instructions, and Publications

31-4Guides/Manuals Detailing Japanese Military Information, 194us-195us
5Navy Instructions Booklets/Handouts, 194us-195us
6WW2 Pacific Ship & Naval Daily Publications, 1944-1946

V. Chaffin WW2 Memorabilia from Japan

37WW2 War Ration Booklets
8Photographs - Okinawa, 1945
9Photographs - Japan General, 1945
10Photographs - Nagasaki and Hiroshima - Destruction, 1945
41Post-WW2 Japan Tourism Maps, 1945-195u
2Post-WW2 Japan Tourism Travel Guides, 1945-195u
3-5Post-WW2 Japan Tourism Postcards, 1945-195u

V. Chaffin School Memorabilia

46Photographs - UGA Commencement, Sigma Nu Fraternity, UGA Law School Graduating Class, 1939-1942
7"Sigma News" Articles and Clippings on V. Chaffin, 1939-1942
8Graduation Programs and Announcements, 1935-1942
9Misc. (U of Alabama photo book and signed letter from UGA President Caldwell), 1941-195u

Dr. E. Chaffin Papers and Books

51Dr. E. Chaffin Correspondences, 1936-1954
2Dr. E. Chaffin Misc. (News Clippings, Photographs, Legal Document, Airline Ticket, US Thrift Card)
3Dr. E. Chaffin Medical Practice Materials, 1912-195u
4Dr. E. Chaffin Freemasonry Materials, 195u
5-7Dr. E. Chaffin Ledger Books, 1928-1941
31-8Dr. E. Chaffin Ledger Books (8 patient account ledgers), 1923-1950, undated

Newspapers and Clippings, 194u-1974

OS Box
6Newspapers and Clippings, 194u-1974

Misc. (DAR Banquet Photograph, Teacher's Grade Book, GA Tech Architecture Exhibition Press Release, GA College Plaques), 20th Century

OS Box
6Misc. (DAR Banquet Photograph, Teacher's Grade Book, GA Tech Architecture Exhibition Press Release, GA College Plaques), 20th Century

Posters (mainly Russian), 20th Century

OS Folder
1CRussian theatre posters (3) and 1 propaganda poster
1Russian propaganda poster (extra large, not in drawer)
OS Folder
2C"Wake Island" Watercolor Poster Reproductions (4)