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Civil War and Reconstruction

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Vermont Cavalrymen Want to Get the Most for their Reenlistments

ADDISON W. PRESTON, Autograph Letter Signed, to Senator Solomon Foot, December 17, 1863. 3 pp., 7¾ x 10 in.

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After the patriotic fervor of 1861 filled Union armies with volunteers, the United States struggled to fill and expand Union armies. In March 1863, Congress passed the Enrollment Act, establishing a national draft to provide manpower for the Union Army. Drafted men could hire substitutes or pay a commutation fee of $300, and both policies were controversial, leading to the slogan, “rich man’s war, poor man’s fight.”

On October 17, 1863, President Abraham Lincoln called for 300,000 additional volunteers for the Union army, divided by the War Department into quotas for each of the respective loyal states. If a state did not meet its quota by January 5, 1864, a draft would fill the remaining quota for each state. The quota for Vermont was 3,300 men, in addition to the requirements of the July 1863 draft not completely filled. Active recruiting furnished more than 3,700 men by the end of January 1864, and more than 1,000 veterans, like those in Preston’s cavalry regiment, reenlisted in the field. On March 14, 1864, President Lincoln called for 200,000 more volunteers.

Item #23879.05, $600

“Capture of Richmond and Petersburg” Ballad

[G. P. HARDWICK], Broadside Poem, Respectfully Dedicated to the Army of the Potomac. Washington, 1865. 1 p. in blue and red ink. 8 ¾ x 13⅜ in.

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“Well sing the doom and the final fall/Of the boasting chivalry, one and all:/And how Grant drove them to the wall,/ Way down in Old Virginia”

This poem and broadside celebrated the capture of Richmond and Petersburg that ultimately ended the Civil War. The poem describes how General U.S. Grant defeated General  Lee and Longstreet and also pokes fun at Confederate President Jefferson Davis.

Item #21896, $600

The Nation Mourns

[ABRAHAM LINCOLN], Newspaper. Harper’s Weekly, May 6, 1865. 16 pp., complete, disbound.

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Engravings include: Lincoln and son Tad at home. Scene at the death bed of President Lincoln. Funeral service at the White House. Ford’s Theatre. Attempted assassination of Secretary Seward. Citizens viewing the body at City Hall, New York.

Item #H-5-6-1865, ON HOLD

A Rare Broadside Song Sheet Promoting
the Confederate Cause – Issued From Baltimore

[DR. NICHOLAS GREENBERRY RIDGELY], Broadside, “Chivalrous C.S.A!” Baltimore, September 21, 1861. 5 x 9 in., 1 p.

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Rare broadside-song sheet blaring “Chivalrous C.S.A!” to the tune of “Vive La Compagnie!”

Item #22127, $695

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

Membership Certificate to the Naval Library
and Institute for Lt. Cmdr. George Dewey

[GEORGE DEWEY], Printed Document. A lithographed membership certificate to the Naval Library and Institute. Signed by Charles Steedman, President, & witnessed twice by Oliver L. Fisher. Navy Yard, Boston, Mass October 15, 1871. 11½ x 16½ in.

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Item #22023.01, $750

The Success of Black Troops At Petersburg, Virginia, Under Butler

[CIVIL WAR], Broadside. New England Loyal Publication Society No. 200. Boston, Mass., June 27, 1864. 1 p., 9 x 10¾ in.

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“They grinned and pushed on, and with a yell that told the southern chivalry their doom, [they] rolled irresistibly over and into the work.”

Item #23626, $750

Printing and Reporting Texas’s Ratification
of the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments

[THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT], Pamphlet. Certified Copy Of A Letter From J. J. Reynolds, Brevet General, U. S. A., Commanding the Fifth Military District .... Washington, D.C., 1870. 84 pp., 6 x 9 in. Disbound.

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Item #22697, $750

General Schofield’s Personal Gettysburg Official Records

[GETTYSBURG; GEN. JOHN M. SCHOFIELD], Books, 3 Volumes – The War of the Rebellion: Gettysburg Official Records, devoted to the Battle of Gettysburg. Owned by Union General John M. Schofield (with his stamp in first volume).

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Item #23060, $750

“The Excursion of the Bought Nominations”
Showing Balloon “Union League”

[CIVIL WAR], Broadside, “The Excursion of the Bought Nominations, The Large Balloon ‘Union League,’ Will Start Immediately. The Balloon is managed by the Old Hunkers in the Ring.” [1864]. 4 ¾ x 8 ½ in.

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Item #21986.04, $750

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

Ohio Reformers Use Rhode Island’s Dorr Rebellion
to Justify Their Own Behavior

[DORR WAR], Pamphlet. The Dorr Movement in Ohio; Being an Examination into the Causes, Progress and Probable Effects of the Revolutionary Course of Locofocoism in the Organization of the General Assembly of This State, for the Session of 1848-49. [Columbus, Ohio]: Legg & Murray, Columbus, [1849]. Disbound. Inscribed in pencil on the title by H.A. Swift, the author, in presentation.

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Item #22543, $800

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

Ledger Report by Colored Sergeant, U.S.C.T.,
“Selling Government horse & bridle...” &c.

WILLIAM BUCKNER, Manuscript Document Signed. July 18, 1864. “Report of Sergeant [William] Buckner of Co. B 46 U.S. Inf.” 2 pp. folio.

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Scarce signed colored officer’s report listing several entries, including “selling of Government horse and bridle and saddles sold.” Report also mentions barrels of whiskey. William Buckner was a sergeant in the 46th Regiment of United States Colored Troops. From April through November 1864, this regiment was stationed in the District of Vicksburg at Milliken’s Bend. Sergeant William Buckner’s African American Civil War Memorial plaque number is C-59.

Item #21800, $800

Gettysburg Doctor Returns to Civilian Practice after Helping in Army Hospitals

[BATTLE OF GETTYSBURG]. HENRY JANES, Medical Director. Autograph Document Signed, releasing Dr. Robert Horner from further service at the expiration of his contract. Camp Letterman, near Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, October 24, 1863, 1 p. 8 x 10 in.

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“AAsst Surg. Robt Horner is hereby relieved from duty at this place on account of the expiration of his contract…”

During the course of the Civil War, 5,532 doctors served for short terms in military hospitals after battles, typically at the rate of $100 per month for at least three months. Following the Battle of Gettysburg, Camp Letterman became the largest field hospital ever built in North America. By August 1863, all temporary field hospitals were closed, but Camp Letterman remained, with over 3,000 patients. Approximately 1,200 men were initially buried on site at Camp Letterman. It closed in November 1863, when the last remaining patients left.

Item #23817, $850

Future Confederate Naval Commander

ARTHUR SINCLAIR, Autograph Letter Signed to unknown. U.S.S. Pennsylvania, Norfolk, January 22, 1861. 1 p., 7⅞ x 9¾ in.

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Three months before his home state of Virginia seceded, U.S. Naval Commander Arthur Sinclair writes to a Commander in the Navy.

Item #21767, $850

Charles Sumner Writes to
a Quaker Peace Advocate and Abolitionist

CHARLES SUMNER (1811-74), Autograph Letter Signed. Boston, October 27, 1861. To Joshua P. Blanchard, 1 p.

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“My dear Sir, I always read you writings with interest & sympathy. We are both arriving at the same results; for we both hate Slavery & love Peace...”

Senator Sumner of Massachusetts was a leading abolitionist, intimate of Lincoln, and radical republican. Before the Civil War, he joined the ranks of abolitionism’s martyrs when he was savagely attacked on the floor of the Senate by Congressman Preston Brooks in consequence of remarks that Sumner made about Brooks’ relative, Senator Andrew Butler of South Carolina. Sumner never fully recovered.

Item #20532, $850

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

Calling for More Black Troops in the Union Army: Criticizing NY for Turning Away African American Soldiers and Praising a Tennessee Regiment

[CIVIL WAR], Broadside. New England Loyal Publication Society No. 143. Boston, Mass., December 2, 1863. 1 p., 9½ x 15 in.

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“These volunteers who were not permitted to volunteer happened to have black skins, and for that reason they were refused. Is it not almost time to have done with this absurd superstition, this fanatical folly?”

Item #23625, $950

Civil War Hero David Dixon Porter
Expresses Support for the Chinese in a Time of Hostility

DAVID DIXON PORTER, Autograph Letter Signed, to “Reverend Dr. Newman.” Washington, D.C., March 14, 1879. 3 pp., 5 x 8 in.

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“As you and I have both expressed friendly sentiments towards the citizens of the Flowery Kingdom, we may hope to be in high favor should we live till that time.”

Item #22730, $950
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