Getting a local Tomcat server instance running on Windows was simple: install it and configure it as part of XAMPP.  Not so on Macintosh OS.

Looking for an alternative, Googling turned up a well-written step-by-step recipe. It includes all of the steps required, from getting Java SDK, getting the right Tomcat package, changing configuration settings, to pointing out a nice little control panel to manage startup and shutdown- similar to the XAMPP control panel for Mac. Well done Wolf Paulus!

Once I got Tomcat running I wanted to post a webapp to get a Hello World page up. This was not covered in the previous recipe, but I found a decent one that worked for me. It also covers installation for Mac, Windows and Ubuntu Linux.