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Civil War and Reconstruction

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On the Day of the First Battle of Bull Run,
Confederate Ordnance Chief Josiah Gorgas Orders
Equipment for 100,000 Troops

JOSIAH GORGAS. [BULL RUN], Manuscript Letter Signed, to Ira R. Foster. Richmond, Va., July 21, 1861. 1 p., 8 x 9¾ in.

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Item #22393, $1,950

Future Confederate Secretary of War
Makes Recommendation to War Department

JAMES SEDDON, Autograph Letter Signed, to Secretary of War Leroy P. Walker. Sabot Hill, Virginia, September 4, 1861. With integral endorsement by Harrison. 2 pp., 5 x 7⅞ in.

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Seddon, a Confederate Congressman from Virginia, recommends Captain George Harrison, a veteran of First Manassas, for promotion. “My friend and fellow Countryman Captn. George Harrison late of the Goochland Cavalry serving at Manassas, where he had the privilege of participating in the perils and honor of our late victory.

Item #21774, $900

Lincoln Calls for the public to supports the U.S. Sanitary Commission

[ABRAHAM LINCOLN]. HENRY W. BELLOWS, Printed Circular Letter, to “the Loyal Women of America.” Washington, D.C., October 1, 1861. 3 pp., 8 x 10 in.

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The Sanitary Commission is … of direct practical value to the nation, in this time of its trial. It is entitled to the gratitude and confidence of the people… There is no agency through which voluntary offerings of patriotism can be more effectively made.  A. Lincoln.

Item #24870, $950

Confederate Secretary of War Judah Benjamin Puts Promotion Controversy to Rest and Keeps General Braxton Bragg in “hateful inaction on the sands of Pensacola harbor”

JUDAH P. BENJAMIN. [CIVIL WAR], Autograph Letter Signed as acting Secretary of War, to Braxton Bragg. Richmond, Va., October 6, 1861. 4 pp., 7¾ x 10 in. On War Department letterhead.

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Writing as acting Confederate Secretary of War, Judah P. Benjamin denies Major General Braxton Bragg the possibility of a transfer to a more active post. Instead, Benjamin gives Bragg additional responsibilities, including defending Alabama. Bragg must have become tired of inaction, as three days after Benjamin wrote this letter, Bragg ordered the Confederate assault on Fort Pickens at the Battle of Santa Rosa Island.

Item #23285, $12,500

Report of Attacks on Forts Walker and Beauregard

JUDAH P. BENJAMIN, Autograph Letter Signed as Confederate Secretary of War, to President Jefferson Davis, with Davis’s endorsement. Richmond, Va., December 30, 1861. 1 p., plus docket, 7⅝ x 8⅞ in.

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Benjamin sends his official reports on the attacks on Forts Walker and Beauregard to Jefferson Davis, to be communicated to the Confederate Congress.

Item #20084, $4,500

Blistering Border State Speech
against Wartime Confiscation of Slaves

[SLAVERY]. U.S. CONGRESS, Pamphlet. Speech of Hon. John S. Carlile, of Virginia, on the Bill to Confiscate the Property and Free the Slaves of Rebels; Delivered in the Senate …, March 11, 1862. Washington: Congressional Globe Office, 1862. 13 pp.

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Item #21856.02, $250

A Day After Grant’s Capture of Fort Henry, Confederate General Lovell Weakens New Orleans in a Futile Attempt to Shore Up Fort Donelson

MANSFIELD LOVELL, Autograph Letter Signed, to Albert Sidney Johnston. New Orleans, La., February 7, 1862. 1 p., 8 x 11 in.

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In February 1862, General Mansfield Lovell sends reinforcements to Albert Sidney Johnston, the chief Confederate commander in the West, so he can defend Nashville and Fort Donelson. The move was fruitless; Fort Donelson fell to Union troops a week after this letter was written.

Item #21776, $2,900

Celebrating a Report of McClellan’s Death

BENJAMIN PRENTISS (1819-1901), Autograph Letter Signed (“Prentiss”) Columbus, [Kentucky], March 4, 1862. 1 p., 7¾ x 8¾ in.

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Item #20740, $2,400

Creating Two New Civil War Military Departments

EDWARD DAVIS TOWNSEND. [CIVIL WAR], Printed Document Signed, “General Orders No. 34.” War Department, Adjutant General’s Office, Washington, D.C., April 4, 1862. 1 p., 5 x 7½ in.

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Item #22956, $450

Union Soldiers Recounts Conquest of Island No. 10

[ISLAND NO. 10], Amos Downing, Autograph Letter Signed, to his brother (Philip Downing). Island No. 10. [New Madrid], Missouri, April 9, 1862. 4 pp. With autograph envelope.

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A day after the Confederate surrender, Amos Downing gives his brother an exciting account of the Siege of Island No. 10 from the perspective of someone who may have served under Commodore Andrew Foote in the riverboat fleet that collaborated with General John Pope. Downing correctly identifies Fort Pillow, eighty miles to the south on the Mississippi, Memphis, and New Orleans as the next Union targets in the Mississippi Valley. His description of Confederate prisoners reveals a measure of discontent within Southern ranks. “The prisoners taken here are all Irish they say that they were force[d] in the service and are satisfied to be taken prisoner. They didnt know what to make of maters. They said first a big smoke and next a noise like thunder and next thing the devil himself would come among them and that was worst than fighting with sticks. They say the first shell killed fifteen men there lost is very heavy…

Item #21890, $750

Requesting Another Battery of Artillery During the Siege of Yorktown

CHARLES SMITH HAMILTON (1822-1891), Autograph Letter Signed (“C. S. Hamilton”), as General U.S. Army, with additional autograph endorsements on verso by S. P. Heintzelman, James A. Hardie and William F. Barry. Div. Hd. Qrs., April 12, 1862. To Gen. S. Williams. 2 pp, 7¾ x 10 in., ruled paper, closed tear.

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In the middle of the Civil War Siege of Yorktown, General Charles Hamilton fruitlessly asks for more artillery.

Item #20363.05, $800

1862 Civil War Bulletproof Vest Broadside

[CIVIL WAR], Broadside. “Good News to the Army.” Bartlett & Munn, Agents for Manufacturers. Newbern, N.C., April 17, 1862. 1 p., 9¾ x 6 ½ in.

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A remarkable broadside advertising the sale of bulletproof vests to Union forces in North Carolina in the wake of the occupation of much of coastal North Carolina by General Ambrose Burnside’s Expeditionary Force.

Item #21777, $4,500

First Federal Occupation of Winchester Broadside

[CIVIL WAR], Broadside, signed in type by Colonel William D. Lewis, Winchester, Virginia, April 17, 1862, 1 p. 12½ x 11 in.

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Broadside describing the first occupation of Winchester, Virginia, during the Civil War.

Item #22128, $4,200

A Surgeon in the Union Army of the Tennessee

DR. D. W. HARTSHORN, Collection of 8 Autograph Letters Signed, while on duty with Generals Grant and Sherman, to his wife. One discusses General Sherman’s bilious fever attack and refusal to be evacuated. Others relate to Hartson’s medical duties and skirmishes.

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Item #20722, $1,800

Clothing the 1st Vermont Cavalry in the Civil War

COMPANY D, 1st VERMONT CAVALRY. [CIVIL WAR], Manuscript Document Signed, June 1862: List of clothing distributed to 54 men, including 25 caps, 24 blouses, 50 trousers, 66 flannel shirts, 15 drawers, 19 bootees, 69 stockings, and 3 blankets. Each row signed by the soldier who received the items. 1 p., 15½ x 23¾ in.

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Item #23879.02, $750

The Christian Banner” – Pro-Confederate Paper From Union-Occupied Fredericksburg

[CIVIL WAR – CONFEDERACY], Newspaper. June 11, 1862. The Christian Banner, Fredericksburg, Va., J.W. Hunnicutt, Vol. 1, Number 6. 4 pp., large folio.

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“The colored population of Fredericksburg are strolling about town and seem to be perfectly happy our country is ruined and slaughtered worse than beeves all on account of the negroes! Can it be possible, that man will sacrifice their country for the negro…”

A fine war-date newspaper published in Fredericksburg, Virginia. Articles on the front page describe the destruction of President Jefferson Davis’s Mississippi plantation, the Battle of Memphis, military actions near Richmond and an account of operations near Charleston, South Carolina. Several other articles deal with the subject of slavery.

Item #21798, $1,250

On the Day He was Promoted to Rear Admiral, Farragut Writes from His Flagship During the Bombardment of Vicksburg, Mississippi

DAVID FARRAGUT, Letter Signed, to J.C. Febriger. Vicksburg, Miss., aboard the “U.S. Flag Ship Hartford. Below Vicksburg,” July 16, 1862. 1 p., 8 x 10 in. With the original transmittal envelope.

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Unaware of his promotion, Farragut writes as “Flag Officer” to Lieutenant Commander J. C. Febriger of the U.S.S. Kanawha reminding him of ordnance protocols and reports.

Item #23548, $3,900

Diary of Massachusetts Soldier Twice Captured—at Second Bull Run and at Gettysburg

[UNION ARMY—GETTYSBURG] CALVIN H. CONANT, Manuscript Diary, August 1862-December 1863. Standard format leatherette pocket diary written in both pen and pencil. 142 pp., 3 x 4¾ in.

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marched to Gettisburg 10 miles...about 1 ’clock in afternoon went in to the fight. It was a hard one & was taken Prisoner as was 40% of my reg and the rest was either killed or wounded.

Shoemaker Calvin Conant was a private in Company G of the 13th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry when he was taken prisoner at the Second Battle of Bull Run on August 30, 1862. For the next three months, he was at home in Massachusetts waiting to be “exchanged” for Confederate a prisoner. He rejoined his regiment in December, after missing the Battles of Antietam and Fredericksburg. He participated in the Mud March and the Battle of Chancellorsville but was taken prisoner on the first day of the Battle of Gettysburg, soon after joining the battle. He spent the next six weeks in a parole camp outside of Philadelphia before rejoining his regiment in mid-August 1863.

Item #24007, $5,500

Opposing the Confederate Draft

[CIVIL WAR – CONFEDERACY], Broadside. “The Petition of Certain Non-Conscripts, Respectfully Presented to the Confederate States Congress.” Richmond, August 8, 1862. Signed in print, “The Petitioners, By their Counsel, John H. Gilmer.” 1 p., 7⅞ x 10⅜ in.

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Petitioning against General Order No. 46 of the Confederate War Department, which rescinded the part of the Confederate Conscription Act of April 16, 1862 that mandated the discharge of all voluntary enlistees under age 18 or over age 35 in July 1862. “These were the terms of the law. They were plain, unequivocal and mandatory. Common sense – universal public opinion … understood, accepted and adopted the law ... Shall an army order revoke a solemn act of Congress? … Have we a constitutional Government, with specific powers granted … or have we an unlimited Government, dependent only on Executive will or ministerial caprice? Are the People free or is the Executive supreme?”

Item #21781, $1,500

Union Soldier Hopes the Draft Will Replenish His Devastated Regiment

L. A. GRAHAM, Autograph Letter Signed, on patriotic letterhead, to his sister, August 18, 1862, Paterson’s Park Hospital, Baltimore, 3 pp.

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i think that I shal go to my rigment in a weak or to they hant but 73 men left in my rigment so the paper says so that i dont no as i could find them if i should try to....i am glad they are a goen to draft so they will be apt to get som of them that is a fraid they will half to sleap on the ground

Item #21265.29, $150
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