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Civil War and Reconstruction

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The Defense in Ex parte Milligan Argues That Even During War the Federal Government Can’t Use Military Trials Where Civilian Courts Are Operative

[LAMBDIN P. MILLIGAN], Printed Book. D. F. Murphy, reporter, Supreme Court of the United States. In the Matter of Lambkin [sic] P. Milligan, William A. Bowles, Stephen Horsey, Under Sentence by Military Commission. Argument of David Dudley Field, Esq. for the Petitioners. March 12 and 13, 1866. New York: Williams J. Read, 1866. 97 + 104 pp., 6⅝ x 10⅛ in.

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Court reporter records the impassioned defense, before the U.S. Supreme Court, by David Dudley Field of Lambdin P. Milligan and others, who were tried by military commission in Indiana during the Civil War and sentenced to death for disloyal activities. The court’s landmark decision agreed with Field’s reasoning that the federal government could not employ military tribunals where civilian courts were in operation.

Item #25148, $1,250

“The South Has Learned Nothing and Forgotten Nothing”

[CIVIL WAR / RECONSTRUCTION], Pamphlet. “Is the South Ready for Restoration?” [Lindley Smith]. Stamped “From Board of Publication of the Union League of Philadelphia.” 20 pp., 5⅞ x 9 in.

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Item #21856.06, $150

Illinois Governor Richard Yates’ Fourth of July Address at the End of Civil War – Unhappy that the Nation Would not Execute Jefferson Davis

[CIVIL WAR & RECONSTRUCTION]. RICHARD YATES, Printed Pamphlet. Speech of Hon. Richard Yates, Delivered at Elgin, Ill. on the Fourth Day of July, A.D. 1865. Jacksonville, IL: Ironmonger and Mendenhall, 1865. 8 pp., 6⅛ x 9½ in.

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The American revolution was begun and fought through for an idea—to establish that man is a man—to vindicate the right of every man to equal rights and to equal citizenship…. Every boy imbibes the genius of our free institutions. The poor friendless rail splitter rises to the proudest pinnacle of human power. [Cheers] The poor tailor boy becomes and is now our President, [cheers] the ferry boy the Chief Justice of our Supreme Court, (cheers) and the humble tanner boys become the great commander, who marshals a million of veteran warriors in the great cause of union and liberty, and holds up the flaming symbol of emancipation to a whole race of mankind. (Applause.)” (p1/c2 – p2/c1)

And yet, for Jeff Davis, who has been a wholesale murderer, who has struck at the life of the whole nation, and rolled the red wave of bloody civil war over the land, they say we must be magnanimous. [Sensation.] We shoot the poor deserter and the poor soldier who is found sleeping at his post on guard, but the nation must be magnanimous and not execute Jeff Davis!” (p6/c1)

Item #24904, $350

Rare Houston Texas Newspapers: the Juneteenth Order Freeing Slaves, Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, and Much More

Juneteenth, Newspaper. Houston Tri-Weekly Telegraph, July 19, 1865. Newspaper. Houston, TX: E. H. Cushing. 4 pp., folio. Partial loss of up to two lines at bottom, but not touching the full printing of the Emancipation Proclamation, issued by Lincoln on January 1, 1863 (p3/c2) or Union General Gordon Granger’s June 19, 1865 order implementing it. With Houston Tri-Weekly Telegraph, July 15, 1863, with belated printing of the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, issued by Lincoln on September 22, 1862.

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The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of [personal]rights and rights of property, between former masters and slaves and the connection heretofore existing between them, becomes that between employer and free laborer.

According to historian Henry Louis Gates, Juneteenth, first celebrated in 1866, initially was an “occasion for gathering lost family members” and “measuring progress against freedom.”[1] In 1980, Juneteenth became aholiday in Texas, the first emancipation celebration granted official state recognition, through the efforts of legislator Al Edwards. Juneteenth is now aholiday in the District of Columbia and forty-seven states—all but Hawaii, North Dakota, and South Dakota.



[1]Henry Louis Gates, “What is Juneteenth?” June 17, 2013, The Root.

Item #26129, PRICE ON REQUEST

An Eloquent Farewell to His Troops from a Massachusetts General Who Marched to the Sea with Sherman and Fought in the Civil War’s Last Battle

WILLIAM COGSWELL. CIVIL WAR, Manuscript Document Signed. General Orders No. 14. [Farewell to the Army of Georgia], Near Washington, D.C., June 9, 1865. 1 p., 7¾ x 12 in.

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Brigadier General William Cogswell offers a dramatic farewell message to the troops under his command in the Army of Georgia. A Salem, Massachusetts lawyer, Cogswell turned his law office into a recruiting station after learning the 6th Massachusetts had been attacked in Baltimore. He was first in, last out, in his Civil War service: In 24 hours, he raised the first full company of the war (Company C, 2nd Massachusetts Volunteers) and his brigade fought in the final battle of the war in Bentonville, North Carolina. Despite his relative obscurity, Cogswell’s eloquence rivals the great farewell messages in military history.

Item #23320, $7,500

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, $750

“Black bellied Yankees” at The Battle of Fort Blakely

FREDERICK MORTIMER CRANDAL, Autograph Letter Signed, to Julian E. Bryant. “Up the Alabama,” April 25, 1865. 4 pp.

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A Union colonel, in command of the 48th Regiment of U.S. Colored Troops, writes to his friend, Col. Julian E. Bryant, of the 46th Regiment of U.S.C.T., recounting his regiment’s  part in the Battle of Fort Blakely. “We have had hard marching & hard fighting. A week in trenches & a successful charge. The ‘Black bellied Yankee’ made their mark … everyone gives us credit for doing well & I think we did excellently well.My loss was not very heavy, not over thirty all told. The other Regts in my Brigade suffered much more severely on the last charge, I being held in reserve & not being under fire but a few moments, they did gallantly…

Item #21813, $3,000

Gideon Welles Announces Lincoln’s Assassination to the Navy

[GIDEON WELLES], Printed Document Signed in print as Secretary of the Navy. General Order No. 51, Navy Department. Washington, D.C. April 15, 1865. Black border, issued just hours after the president’s death. One page with integral blank, 5½ x 8½ in.

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Item #23915, $2,500

Illustrator Frank Leslie Publishes Fanciful Grand Reception of Civil War Notables as a Subscription Premium

[ABRAHAM LINCOLN], Lithograph. “Grand Reception of the Notabilities of the Nation, at the White House 1865,” New York: Frank Leslie, [April] 1865. 1 p., 19 x 23¾ in.

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Frank Leslie published this print as a premium for his new family magazine, Frank Leslie’s Chimney Corner, and copyrighted it on April 8, 1865, just a week before Lincoln’s death. The image, created by engraver Henry B. Major and lithographer Joseph Knapp, portrays Lincoln, flanked by the First Lady and Vice President Andrew Johnson, greeting Julia Dent Grant, wife of Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant who stands nearby.

According to a notice printed at the bottom right corner, “Every Person who pays Ten Cents each for numbers 1 and 2 of Frank Leslie’s Chimney Corner, The New Family Paper, is entitled to a copy of this PLATE without extra charge,” or individuals could purchase the print for $3.

Item #25618, $2,000

Civil War Veteran in Maryland Predicts the War Will End Soon

DAVID F. MCGOWAN, Autograph Letter Signed, to Ellen [P. Fowler?], March 15, 1865, Ellicott’s Mills, Maryland. 3 pp., 5x 8 in. Also includes DAVID F. McGOWAN, Autograph Letter Signed, to Ellen [P. Fowler?], May 9, 1865, Ellicott’s Mills, Maryland. 4 pp., 5 x 8 in.

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Sherridan has been doing some good work. 1400 prisoners passed here a few days ago that he captured And Report says he has captured 1000 more. A couple of officers stopped here last night, that had just been exchanged. They were captured last August and gave me a good account of their trials & tribulations down in Dixie. One of them gave $100. for a common pair of shoes from all appearances the Confederacy will soon collapse. Sherman has been heard from, is at Fayetteville, N. C. think Richmond will fall, before fall.

Civil War veteran David F. McGowan writes about prospects for Union victory and life in Maryland as the Civil War draws to a close.

Item #24471, $380

New York Soldier Tells His Sister They Plan to Finish the War Soon

RICHARD SLADE, Autograph Letter Signed, to his sister Mary A. Slade, March 10, 1865, 3 pp.

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Those four legged Grey backs have about played out but there is a plenty of two legged ones here yet....We are going to try & Cleanse out these Johneys this summer & come home next winter

Item #21265.11, $150

A White Captain in the U.S. Colored Troops, Richard Andrews, Describes his Closing Days of the Civil War and its Aftermath

[CIVIL WAR – UNION]. RICHARD ANDREWS, Six letters to his wife Libby, approx. 15 pp. in all.

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“There will be an awful hot time if our Brigade is engaged. I dont think anything can restrain the men if they once get started. I am in hopes to come out alive, but no one can tell but the Almighty”

Item #22399, $1,500

William T. Sherman’s Special Field Orders No. 15 –
40 Acres to Newly Freed Families

WILLIAM T. SHERMAN, Printed Document, Unsigned. Special Field Orders, No. 15. January 16, 1865. Headquarters, Military Division of the Mississippi: Savannah. 2 pp. 5 x 8 in. With a closely related document:

JOHN G. FOSTER. Printed Document, Signed by William L.M. Burger as Assistant Adjutant General to Major General Foster. General Order No. 8, Affirming and Implementing Sherman’s Special Order No. 15. January 25, 1865. Hilton Head, S.C. 1 p. 5 x 8 in.

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Note: to be delivered after exhibit completion, National Constitution Center, Civil War & Reconstruction.

With General John Foster’s Implementation Order, Signed by AAG of First Regiment, New York Engineers, Who Saw Extensive Action during the War. Although the order does not actually mention mules, Sherman later ordered that the army could lend mules to the new settlers, providing the origin of the common phrase, “40 acres and a mule.” In one development arranged by General Foster, the Freedmen’s Colony of Roanoke Island, 2200 freedmen had settled on household plots. The families who settled these lands were devastated when, soon after the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, Andrew Johnson revoked Sherman’s orders, stripping the emancipated slaves of their homes and in many cases their only source of income. When the Army abandoned the colony under Johnson’s presidency, most of the freedmen had to return to the mainland in search of work.

Item #24378.01-.02, $10,000

The Lincoln Assassination and Its Aftermath:
Read the Day-by-Day Coverage in New York Newspapers

[ABRAHAM LINCOLN], Archive of newspapers related to the assassination and the hunt for the conspirators. Approximately 450 pp. From 11-1/2 x 16-1/2 in. to 23 x 31 in. per issue, depending on the title; most 15-1/2 x 23 in.

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A remarkable archive of 54 issues of six different daily and weekly New York newspapers from the six weeks after Abraham Lincoln’s assassination, with coverage of the assassination, the assassin, the funerals in New York and Springfield, and the hunt for the conspirators. Also includes one issue from July 1865 regarding the execution of the conspirators and one issue from February 1866 with coverage of a memorial service in Lincoln’s honor.

Item #30031.01, $6,500

1865 General Orders,
Including Many Regarding Lincoln’s Assassination

[CIVIL WAR - WAR DEPARTMENT], Book. Bound collection of separately printed General Orders from the Adjutant General’s office for 1865. Containing 168 of 175 consecutive orders, and a 94-page index at front. Bound for Major General William Scott Ketchum, with his name in gilt on the spine and his markings or wartime notes on numerous pages. 4¾ x 7 in.

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Item #22265, $5,550

“Separating the Loyal from the Disloyal”
in Reconstruction North Carolina

[CIVIL WAR], Archive of materials relating to the administering of loyalty oaths in North Carolina after the Civil War during presidential Reconstruction. 1865-1866.

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Item #21814, $4,500

Great Union Soldier’s Letter about Sherman’s “Retreat on Savannah”

JOHN B. COOPER, Autograph Letter Signed, to his wife Mary Cooper. Fort Alexander Hays, VA, December 21, 1864, 3 pp.

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Item #21265.02, $300

One of Five Brothers in the Union Army Sees His Duty

AUSTIN LAMPREY, Autograph Letter Signed, to his mother, Bridget P. Lamprey, December 16, 1864, McClellan Hospital, Hampton, Virginia. 4 pp., 8vo. with envelope.

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Some one has got to do this Work I might as Well do it as any one els but just as they think not as I care I Stood it two years in the feld most I gess I can Stand Nine months more…

Item #21265.20, $250

Lincoln Endorses Petition from Border State Unionists

ABRAHAM LINCOLN, Autograph Endorsement Signed as President, ca. December 1864, on a manuscript petition, with two endorsements from Brigadier General Solomon Meredith. 2 pp., 7 x 9⅛ in.

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President Lincoln endorses a manuscript petition from border-state Unionists seeking the establishment of a permanent military post at Hickman, Kentucky. “Submitted to the Sec. of War who is requested to see the bearer. A Lincoln.

Item #21191.99, $12,000

Order Directing a Captain to Detach
from Command of the Kearsarge

GIDEON WELLES, Document Signed by Gideon Welles, November 23, 1864, 8 x 10 in., 1 p.

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An order from Secretary of the Navy Gideon Welles to Captain John A. Winslow in Boston, directing that he is relieved of his command.

Item #22251, $1,750
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