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Civil War and Reconstruction

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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

General Hardee’s “Views” on the Need to Evacuate Corinth, Accepted by Beauregard (SOLD)

WILLIAM J. HARDEE, Autograph Manuscript Signed, entitled “Views.” Corinth, Mississippi, May 25, 1862. Followed by: G.T. Beauregard. Draft or Retained Autograph Endorsement Signed, Corinth, May 26, 1862; and: G.T. Beauregard. Autograph Letter Signed, Corinth, May 26, 1862. 4 pp. in all. 9⅛ x 11¼ in.

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Assuming that we have 50,000 men and the enemy nearly twice that number, protected by intrenchments, I am clearly of the opinion that no attack should be made. Our forces are inferior, and the battle of Shiloh proves that with only the advantage of position it was hazardous to contend against his superior strength, and to attack him in his intrenchments now, would probably inflict on us and the Confederacy a fatal blow… [Hardee to Beauregard]”

“…I fully concur in the views contained in your letter of the 25th inst. received last night and I had already commenced giving orders to my chiefs of staff departments for their execution. But everything that is done must be done under the plea of the intention ‘to take the offensive’ at the opportune moment. Every Commandant of Corps must get every thing ready to move at a moments notice… [Beauregard to Hardee]”

Hardee argues that holding onto the railroad junction of Corinth, Mississippi would be a tactical and strategic mistake. Not only would the South suffer serious losses, a decisive defeat at Corinth would tarnish the reputation of the Confederacy’s military capabilities, hurting hopes of foreign intervention and demoralizing the homefront. Hardee perceptively identifies the difficulties the Union Army would face in trying to occupy the interior of the Deep South, defending tenuous supply lines, “over a country where his mechanical superiority will not avail him.” Following Hardee’s “Views,” Beauregard pens two responses, agreeing with his advices and informing him that he was beginning preparations for an evacuation. Beauregard brilliantly evacuated his army from Corinth in the night of May 29-30, deceiving Union General Henry Halleck into thinking that Beauregard was massing troops for a general assault.

Item #21779, SOLD — please inquire about other items

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

Union Brown Water Navy Celebrates the Fourth of July by Bombarding Vicksburg

WILLIAM H. KINNEY, Autograph Letter Signed, July 13, 1862, “U.S.S. Gunboat Benton, Off Vicksburg,” 4 pp., 5 x 8 in.

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We had quite a time on the fourth of this month  we commenced to celebrate the day with our morters by throwing shell into the City of Vicksburge  we knocked down quite a number of buildings during the day. At 12 oclock we fired a salute of 100 guns from the gun boats, and a national salute with the morters into the City.

Item #21265.22, $450

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

The Army of the Potomac Arriving at Yorktown from Williamsburg

[HARPER’S WEEKLY], Newspaper. Harper’s Weekly, September 6, 1862.

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Item #H-9-6-1862, $250

George McClellan Boxing with Robert E. Lee:
Cartoon Celebrating the Union Victory at Antietam (SOLD)

[ANTIETAM]. [ABRAHAM LINCOLN], Lithographic Print, “The Last Round. Little Mac vs Big Charley,” from Wilkes’ Spirit of the Times, New York, N.Y. [after September 17, 1862]. 1 p., 15 x 12 in.

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This political cartoon celebrates the Union victory in the Battle of Antietam, depicting the bloodbath as a boxing contest between Confederate General Robert E. Lee (labeled “Charles” Lee in reference to the Revolutionary War traitor) and Union General George McClellan. European leaders watch as Jefferson Davis exclaims “My Game is Up” and Abraham Lincoln encourages his champion to “Give him fits my darling!” The handlers are African Americans, and Lee appears ready to throw in the sponge. The printer is unspecified, but it was issued by Wilkes’ Spirit of the Times, a New York publication that appealed to upper class sports aficionados.

Item #22318, SOLD — please inquire about other items

Army of the Potomac Surgeon’s Diary:
Antietam to Chancellorsville (SOLD)

[CIVIL WAR]. ROBERT ELMER, Autograph Manuscript Signed. Diary. September 26, 1862-June 11, 1863. 46 pp. 4 ½ x 3”.

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“I rode in company with the President & Staff to review the others…”

Excellent-contentdiary with daily entries, written by Assistant Surgeon Robert W. Elmer of the 23rd New Jersey Regt., covering his service from September 26, 1862 through July 1, 1863, when he was mustered out. Includes post-battle observations of the Antietam battlefield. Elmer recounts accompanying President Lincoln on his review of the Army of the Potomac on April 8, 1863, and the subsequent bloody combat experienced by General Sedgwick’s VI Corps in the Chancellorsville campaign. Elmer writes on May 3, 1863, as Sedgwick drives General Jubal Early’s skeleton force off of Marye’s Heights in the Battle of Salem Church, an important side engagement during the Battle of Chancellorsville, “The batteries of the Rebs on the hills above Fredericksburg were captured about ten oclock. Our forces then marched through the city & followed them up on the Plank road to Richmond about three miles were there was another severe engagment in which a greater number of our men were killed & wounded than previously. I was kept very busy till late in the evening dressing the wounds. Laid down at night in a field of wheat & slept like a rock till morning.

Item #21895, SOLD — please inquire about other items

The Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
and Pivotal Battle of Antietam (SOLD)

[EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION], Newspaper. Harper’s Weekly, October 4, 1862. 16 pp., complete, disbound.

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Contains a Thomas Nast illustration: “McClellan Entering Frederick, Maryland” on the front page. Inside: The Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation, September 22, 1862. View of Harpers Ferry and Maryland Heights. War map of Kentucky. Capitol grounds at Harrisburg, Pennsylvania turned into a camp. Centerfold: Battle of Antietam. Grand depot for General Grant’s army at Columbus, Kentucky.

Item #22505, SOLD — please inquire about other items

Reporting the Preliminary Emancipation Proclamation
and the Union Victory That Precipitated It (SOLD)

[EMANCIPATION PROCLAMATION], Newspaper. Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, New York, N.Y., October 11, 1862. 16 pp., 11 x 16 in.

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Reporting the Battle of Antietam, the bloodiest day in American history, and the occasion for Lincoln to issue his preliminary Emancipation Proclamation warning the South to return to the Union or face losing their slaves.

Item #22501.41, SOLD — please inquire about other items

Three Special Orders Signed
by Gen. Townsend Re. Capt. Abbott

EDWARD D. TOWNSEND. Brig. Gen. and Assistant Adjutant General, 3 Special Orders Signed, from the Adjutant-General’s Office, War Department, to (and docketed by) Capt. Henry L. Abbott, Colonel of Volunteers, Corps of Topographical Engineers, variously under Generals Barnard, Banks, &c. Henry L. Abbott (1831-1927) commanded the Army of the Potomac’s siege artillery at Petersburg. For this and other recognizable services during the war, he was brevetted brigadier general.

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Item #20577.01-.03, $160

Horace Greeley Notes the Civil War Overwhelms Agriculture in Public Mind

HORACE GREELEY, Autograph Letter Signed to J. N. Bagg, November 11, 1862. 1 p.

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Fighting, not farming, engrosses public attention at this time....

Item #22514.06, $395
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