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Civil War and Reconstruction

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Prior to 1864 presidential election, McClellan’s former groomsman tries to even the field

SETH WILLIAMS, Manuscript Letter Signed, to Marsena R. Patrick, October 4, 1864. 1 p.

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Assistant Adjutant General Seth Williams writes to Provost Marshal M. R. Patrick that he will ask Lieutenant General Ulysses S. Grant to establish regulations to govern political agents in the camps prior to the 1864 elections.

Item #21386.03, $950

Senator Judah P. Benjamin of Louisiana 1859 speech supporting acquisition of Cuba

JUDAH P. BENJAMIN, Pamphlet, “Speech of Hon. J.P. Benjamin of Louisiana, on the Acquisition of Cuba. Delivered in Senate U.S. Friday February 11, 1859.” Includes original envelope, 7¼ x 3¾ in., free franked in the upper right by N.J. Senator John Thomson (1800-1862). 16 pp., 6 x 9½ in.

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in the expansion of our system we seek no conquest, subjugate no people, impose our laws on no unwilling subjects. When new territory is brought under our jurisdiction, the inhabitants are admitted to all the rights of self-government.

In a speech in the United States Senate, Benjamin supports the annexation of Cuba with no hint of irony in his declaration that the people of the United States “impose our laws on no unwilling subjects.” His speech also conveys his states’-rights perspective on the nature of the Union that he championed while later serving in Jefferson Davis’ Confederate cabinet.

Item #24466, $1,400

Quartermaster of New York Regiment Anticipates the Assault on Fort Wagner; Mentions the 54th Massachusetts

[CIVIL WAR]. CHARLES E. WALBRIDGE, Autograph Letter Signed, to “George,” July 17, 1863, Folly Island, South Carolina. 5 pp., 7¾ x 9¾ in.

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I cannot but think constantly of the approaching battle tomorrow; just think if we get Charleston! Vicksburg is fallen, Richmond at our last accounts was seriously threatened, Lee was in chancery up in Maryland, and now if we can only take this accursed city.

Item #24474, SOLD — please inquire about other items

New York Soldier Reports on Fort Sumter before It Was Taken

ABRAM BOGART, Autograph Letter Signed, to a “friend,” South Carolina, October 10, 1863, 4 pp. 8vo.

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I am quite lame with the kidney complaint but not bad enough to fetch me home yet for they wont let a man go home as long as he can go and then they had rather he would die here for they die here every day....if you have got any friends that talk of coming tell him to join the masons or odfellows or some other d n d disorder and stay at home

Item #21265.06, $375

A Middle-Aged Private in the 140th New York ‘Rochester Race Horses’ Writes His Wife

ERASTUS U. POLLAY, Autograph Letter Signed, to Julia A. Pollay, May 31, 1863, Falmouth, VA, 2 pp, 8vo., one slight fold cut (text not affected), otherwise fine condition.

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I have bin Down to the River this Morning and had A good wash and my Body is Clan Enough to sleep with a Woman but that Cant be So I must be Content untill I get out of this War and then I will see you About that

Item #21265.12, $250

Civil War Song Sheet: When Johnny Comes Marching Home

[PATRICK GILMORE], Broadside, “When Johnny comes marching home.” Philadelphia, Johnson & Co., Song Publishers. [1863-65]. 6 x 9 in., 1 p.

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When Johnny comes marching home again, Hurrah! Hurrah! / We’ll give him a hearty welcome then, Hurrah! Hurrah!...

Item #22946, $375

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

Evacuating Elizabeth City and Leaving Nothing for the Rebels, to the Dismay of Freedpeople and Unionists

THOMAS BOURNE, Autograph Letter Signed, April 18, 1863, Elizabeth City, [North Carolina]. 2 pp., 8vo.

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this place is to be evacuated all the troops and the gunboats leave with us there is a general move of the darkeys they all want to go with us they do not dare to stay here after we leave for fear of the guerrillas I believe we are to take every thing with us that can be of use to the rebs

Item #21265.25, $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

Unusual Caricatures of Southern Aristocrats by Union Soldier on Letter to Parents

SAMUEL HYDE, Fragment of an Autograph Letter Signed, to his parents, no date [1861-1865], with his drawing of a “Suthern lady.” 2 pp.

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…the woods was ful of ded rebs

Item #21265.17, $225

Union Soldier Tells His Wife of the Rebel Attack on New Bern, North Carolina

HENRY PICKFORD, Fragment of Autograph Letter Signed, to his wife Sarah Pickford, c. March 1863. 2 pp.

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we had quite an excitement in Newbern about a week ago the rebels made three or four attacks on the City and were finally repulsed we lost one man on board of one of the Gunboats that is all

Item #21265.13, $140

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

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

Spectacular NY Appeal for Patriotic Artillery Recruits at Start of Civil War

[CIVIL WAR], Artillery Recruitment Broadside, Fifth Regiment, U.S. Army, ca. 1861. 1 p., 22½ x 31 in.

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Printed by Ringwalt & Brown in Philadelphia, this recruitment poster sought men between ages 18 and 35 to enlist in twelve mounted batteries of light artillery. Touted as the “only Regiment of its kind in the service, and the last chance for those who wish to join the flying artillery,” the field officers “are men of experience in the Regular Army,” so enlistees could be certain of “doing the duty of Soldiers, under the command of Soldiers.”

Item #24672, SOLD — please inquire about other items

161 Young Men of Providence, R.I. Found “Loyal League” Pledged to Support the Union

[CIVIL WAR--RHODE ISLAND], Pledge and original membership roll of the Loyal League of Providence, Manuscript Document Signed, with 161 signatures, ca. January 1863, [Providence, RI]. 2 pp., 7¾ x 22¼ in.

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We, the members of the Loyal League, do hereby pledge ourselves, by words and acts, whenever practicable, to use our influence in support of the Government in all its measures for the suppression of the present unholy rebellion; and we will use our influence to discountenance and oppose all efforts in opposition to the Government and the Union.

Item #24584, $2,000

Hand-Made Union Patriotic and Religious Song Book

[CIVIL WAR], Manuscript Pen and Ink Folk Art Song Book, ca. 1864. 24 pp., 6⅝ x 8 in.

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This hand-sewn booklet contains eight songs popular during the Civil War era, with music and lyrics in calligraphy. Songs include “On a Green Grassy Noll” by J. D. Canning, with music by Ira Odell; “The Old Mountain Tree” by James G. Clark; “Harmonian Waltz”; “Year of Jubilee, or Kingdom has Come!”; “Squire Jones’s Daughter”; “The Sweet Birds Are Singing”; “Lament of the Irish Emigrant”; and “Soon and For Ever,” by J. B. Monsell. The last page of the booklet is dated February 21, 1864.

Item #24826, $4,500

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

A Fighting Vermont Regiment Summary of Actions after Gettysburg, July 5-13, 1863

ADDISON W. PRESTON, Autograph Document, c. July to October 1863, 2 pp., 8 x 12¼ in.

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Item #23879.01, $1,250

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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“A. Asst 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

Connecticut Civil War Colonel Sketches Jacksonville, Florida Headquarters, Muses on the Fountain of Youth, Supports Freed Slaves Getting Land and Recognizes their Humanity

[CIVIL WAR]. WILLIAM H. NOBLE, Autograph Letter Signed, to his wife, [Jacksonville, Fla.], [April?] 8, 1864. 16 pp., 8 x 10 in., on 4 folding sheets stitched together.

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Just make up your mind that negro nature & human white nature are very near alike....

Every now & then it is proclaimed with great joy that Mr So & so, some northern nabob or speculator has purchased some rebel plantation & prepares to work the same. … It’s of more consequence locally & nationally, thus the negro should buy & toil as he surely will on his acre of land, than that princely men in Illinois should have inserted his loose change in a southern plantation.

Connecticut native William H. Noble, writing to his wife, responds to rumors of the fountain of youth, vilifies northerner plantation renters who continued the Southern system as new feudal barons, and calls for the redistribution of plantations to former slaves to ensure national stability. Jacksonville, Florida, was occupied and then abandoned by the Union four times. The result was a broken, skeletal city at the Civil War’s conclusion.

Noble reflects on how the African Americans’ freedom will change Southern and national life, and that regardless of race, he believed human nature was the same. Further, the former slaves needed an interest in and responsibility for their own advancement. Presaging Booker T. Washington, he thinks developing industry more important than carpetbaggers coming south offering education. With a detailed sketch of headquarters in Jacksonville, including tents, stables, and the brigade flagstaff.

Item #23878, $3,500
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