Air-stable catalysts consisting of tantalum nitride nanoparticles represented as a mixture of TaxNy and TaOxNy with diameters in the range of 0.5 to 3 nm supported on highly dehydroxylated silica were synthesized from TaMe5 (Me = methyl) and dimeric Ta-2(OMe)(10) with guidance by the principles of surface organometallic chemistry (SOMC). Characterization of the supported precursors and the supported nanoparticles formed from them was carried out by IR, NMR, UV-Vis, extended X-ray absorption fine structure, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopies complemented with XRD and high-resolution TEM, with dynamic nuclear polarization surface enhanced NMR spectroscopy being especially helpful by providing enhanced intensities of the signals of H-1, C-13, Si-29, and N-15 at their natural abundances. The characterization data provide details of the synthesis chemistry, including evidence of (a) O-2 insertion into Ta-CH3 species on the support and (b) a binuclear to mononuclear transformation of species formed from Ta-2(OMe)(10) on the support. A catalytic test reaction, cyclooctene epoxidation, was used to probe the supported nanoparticles, with 30% H2O2 serving as the oxidant. The catalysts gave selectivities up to 98% for the epoxide at conversions as high as 99% with a 3.4 wt% loading of Ta present as TaxNy/TaOxNy.