CIVIL WAR CORESPONDENCE & DIARIES
An incredible Confederate journal:
"Lincoln's 'Great Armada' is South of Charleston... Our command fought & retreated from Corinth to Vicksburg, where they were finally driven to the humiliating, as well as destructive necessity of surrendering themselves to the enemy..."
674. (Confederate Diary.) Choice bound journals of Private Rufus L. Hughes who served throughout the entirety of the Civil War. Hughes enlisted in the 2nd Alabama Volunteers, Magnolia Regiment, in 1861 and later served in the 42nd Alabama Infantry which saw action at Corinth and was part of the garrison that surrendered at Vicksburg in 1863. The regiment later saw action at Chattanooga and Atlanta. The lot consists of two 8 x 12" journals: one covering his service from August 26, 1861 through his return home in May of 1865; the other containing excerpts of poetry and prose admired by Hughes as well as a complete roster of the original members of the Magnolia Regiment 2nd Alabama Volunteers noting who died in action and other biographical information. The diary consists of approximately 225 pages of which 175 have been filled in. Hughes, a recent graduate of the University of Alabama, is quite literate and well-spoken and his journal gives an excellent account of life in a coastal fort in Mobile Bay as well as an excellent account of the long road home after he surrendered with Joseph E. Johnston at Greensboro, N.C. The journal reads in small part: "...[Fort Morgan, Aug. 31, 1861] Several Yankees come over on a small sail vessel under a flag of truce from the U.S. Steamer Wyandotte who is the blockading vessel of this fort. Their business was with Col Maury, and must have been very private, for he has not divulged it to his men... [Fort Morgan, Sept. 23, 1861]...This morning there are three large vessels -- two steamers & some sail vessel -- in sight. They all seem to be very large. I do not understand so many being posted out there at the same time...[Oct. 4, 1861] ...('Camp Maury') was fired upon by the blockade vessel, The Mississippi: She fired about twenty shells -- all busted well, but not come near the battery. Our Co. was ordered to report there immediately... Col. M. determined on having some rifled cannon there immediately. So by night he had one there -- taking it from the fort -- a distance of two miles, through heavy sand... [Oct. 30, 1861]...The small schooner which 'ran the blockade' for Cuba from Mobile some two or three weeks ago came in this morn, after successful 'running the blockade' again last night. She brought 360 sacks of coffee, & some cigars, besides some important messages from our Consul in Cuba to President Davis... [Nov. 5, 1861]...Lincoln's 'Great Armada' is South of Charleston, down on the Georgia Coast...[Nov. 7, 1861]... I have been reading a novel, styled, 'The Planter's Northern Bride.' It is a splendid Southern work by Mrs. Lee Hentz. It strongly approves of slavery...[Dec. 28, 1861]...Genls' Bragg & Withers are over this morn. It is the first time I ever saw Bragg. He is a tall man, & looks to be about fifty years old...[Feb. 22, 1862] [Col.] Maury issued orders this afternoon prohibiting all spirituous liquors from coming here unless by order of the surgeon.. Just to think! Yesterday he was drunk, and today issues such an order!...[Feb. 23]... Today Col. Powell came over and placed Maury, Bradford & Forney under arrest for being drunk a few days since...[Mar. 30, 1862]... left Fort Gaines... Were ordered to Corinth Miss. We left Mobile on the 6th March... in common box cars & quite a rough time... We arrived at Fort Pillow about 1 O'clock A.M. on the 19th Inst...[Sept. 10, 1862]...marching orders for us. We are ordered to leave here for Tupelo tomorrow night on the cars..." The journal then skips a year (to the day) with the following summary: "...In having been twelve months today since I last wrote in this book...I have undergone more hardships...more privations than I had any idea I was capable of bearing -- Our command fought & retreated from Corinth to Vicksburg, where they were finally driven to the humiliating, as well as destructive necessity of surrendering themselves to the enemy... Never will I forget the horrible feeling caused to come over me when I saw our position - one in which we took so much pride on account of its strength..." He then goes on to mention the comrades he lost at Corinth and Vicksburg. The journal then skips ahead to April 26, 1865 where he writes: "The Army of Tennessee was today surrendered by that gallant old Chieftain Jos. E. Johnston, to Gen. W. T. Sherman U.S.A. The fall of the Virginia armies occasioned the fall of our Army-- . These two armies -- once as good as the world ever saw- were the props to the Confederacy, & with their fall our Country was doomed to ruin-- Sad is the thought! but we have spent four years -- long & tedious years -- for naught, & the amount of blood and treasure we have expended has been immense. We now have nothing but darkness, ahead of us- Gloomy! Gloomy!! is our future! but He who decides the fate of bullets knows what is best, and it is his will that we should be a subjugated people, and we would humbly ask of him to give us resignation, with a feeling that it is all for the best.'" The diary then makes note of his travels from North Carolina back home to Alabama recording various incidents along the way, including reports that "...The Yankees had captured Presd. Davis -- We are not disposed to credit it..." Upon arrival at Tuscaloosa, Alabama "...we saw the buildings of the Old University lie smoldering in ashes -- The work of an invader's torch..." Much more fine content. Pages and binding bear the expected wear and tear common to field-carried journals, but overall the pages are quite legible and fairly clean. Never on the market, this record was consigned by the author's great, great, grand-daughter! (Est. $3,000-5,000)
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Union soldier diary including note of Lee's surrender... nonchalantly reporting news of "olde Abe's" assassination.
675. 1865 Union soldier's pocket diary written by Sgt. John C. Doty, Co. G, 122nd New York Vols., from Jan. 1, 1865 through July 4, 1865. This leather-bound diary has three dates per page and totals 61pp. completed by Doty. Describes Grant's last drive to capture Lee's army during the Appomattox campaign, and of the daily events of the movements of the Union army after winning the war. In 1862, at age thirty-five, Doty enlisted for three years service. He served with the Army of the Potomac's 6th Corps, participating in battles such as Gettysburg, the Wilderness, and in Sheridan's 1864 Valley campaign. Doty died in 1898 as a result of exposure endured during the War. Partial transcript: "...[Jan 2]...I went on picket. All quiet on hole line...[Jan 29]...I was sergeant of Brigade guard...[Feb. 5]...had orders to pack up and be ready to move at early morning. 5th Corps cavalry and 2nd Corps went to [the] left on raid. Heard heavy cannonading at 5pm...[Feb. 8]...our troops established our line on the left of 2nd Corps...[Feb. 20]...firing on picket line at night. [A] lot of Johnies came in...[Mar. 3]...I went over to the 9th [N. Y.] Heavy [Artillery]...[Mar. 7]...I had detail on fatigue at Fort Fisher. Seward and Gov. Fenton of N. Y. visited us...[Mar. 8]...got my sergeant's warrant...[Mar. 8]...went over to Corps headquarters...and got some pictures taken...[Mar. 15]...we was reviewed by Gen. Meade...[Mar. 23]...awful windy all day...blow so hard. Blew up large trees...Col. Dwight came back and [so did] Lieut. Col. Walpole...[Mar. 25, battle of Fort Stedman, Petersburg where Lee's last attempt to break the Union siege failed]...rebs attacked our works on [the] left. Heavy firing at 5 AM. Our Div. Charged the enemy's works in front of Ft. Fisher. Half moon battery had an awful fight. Col. Dwight got killed with a shell. We took rebs works of pickets...charged at 3 PM...[Mar. 26]...a little picket firing in morning...[Mar. 27]...our regt fell in at 4 AM marched out to picket line. Rebs drove in a few of our pickets...[Mar. 29]...our regt went out to picket...got orders to pack up at 9 AM. We packed up and struck tents...did not move. Sheridan and 5th Corps and 2nd Corps moved off to left...[Mar. 30]...big battle going on. I went over to 9th Heavy in evening...[Apr. 1]...our regt fell in and marched out to picket line and charge line...[Apr. 2, the fall of Petersburg]...at 4 AM our Corps charged the reb['s] main works and took them. Then such a skedadle. We took everything clear to Petersburg. Took piles of prisoners and cannon and at night sent out on picket...[Apr. 3]...at daylight our picket line advanced clear through the town. The rebs left in the night. We took possession of the city. Then the whole army marched on, to the west about 11 miles...[Apr. 4]...started at 7 AM. Marched 5 miles and halted...[Apr. 6]...started at 6 AM...enemy made a stand at east Sailor Creek...charged them off a large hill. Routed them. Took a pile of prisoners. Bob Lee's son and Gen. Ewell...[Apr. 7]...halted at Farmville on the RR...camped on the hill above the town...had skirmish above town...[Apr. 8]...moved out. Our Div went on wagon road...[Apr. 9]...started at 5 AM. Run the rebs right through. Halted at 3 1/2 PM near Clover Hill. Gen. Lee surrendered the whole army at 4 PM. Such a noise never was heard before. Cannon firing. We put up tents...[Apr. 10]...cavalry guarded the rebs. Rainy all day...[Apr. 11]...started at 6 AM on the back road...halted at 4 PM at Concord Bridge, 20 miles...[Apr. 13]...halted 2 miles beyond Burksville station...[Apr. 16]...I went down to station got ram rod. The news came to us that olde Abe was shot. Day closed fine...[Apr. 20]...news came that Jo Johnson had surrendered to Sherman...[Apr. 23]...moved from the rail road towards Danville...[Apr. 25]...crossed the river on pontoon bridges. Passed through Mount Laurel at 11 AM...[Apr. 27]...our regt ahead of everything. Got to Danville at 10 AM...our Co. guarded the bridge and arrested all stragglers. Our brigade took possession of the town...[Apr. 28]...detailed out of our regt on guard house...[May 5]...I was detailed on provost duty and went on parole at night. I went and see a nigger dance. Most fun I ever see. Niggers around all night...[May 10]...I went on picket at the river where the rebel magazine blew up...[May 16]...3 Div. Went by RR to Richmond...[May 20]...we broke camp ...got on the cars...for Richmond. Ran over a nigger at the second station and killed him...[May 21]...went into camp 2 miles from town on the Petersburg pike...[May 22]...I went over to Richmond. Went to the Capitol. To Libby Prison, Castle Thunder, Jeff Davis House and all over the city. Rained at night...[May 24]...we started for Washington at 6 AM. Our Div. Passed through Richmond at 10 AM...[May 25]...Old Getty got drunk. Got on wrong road. Went 5 miles out of the way...good many men died on the road [May 27]...the wagon train got stuck in mud. It did not come up till night...[May 28]...our brigade packed up and started...for Fredericksburg. Left the balance of Corps in camp...[May 29]...marched into the city...3 Co. of our regt and picked up stragglers and kept them under guard...[June 2]...went into camp...on the Alexandria and Leesburg Railroad...[June 7]...cleaned up for review and had inspection at night...[June 8]...had reveille at 3 AM. Fell in at 4. Marched to Washington arrived at 8. Formed near [the] Long Bridge. Marched down Penn Avenue in review. Reviewing stand at White House. Reviewed by President Johnson. Awful hot. Lots [of] men sun stroke [and] died. Got to camp 3 PM. Men all tired out...[June 15]...9th Heavy left for the fortifications. We got some Sanitary stuff...[June 16]...Niles Rodgers died and was buried at Arlington Heights [Cemetery]...[June 17]...had brigade dress parade at 7 PM. Drummed 3 men out of camp...[June 22]...officers all had a drunken row most all night...[June 23]...Maj. [Alonzo] Clapp died at 11 AM. We sent his body home. Our regt got mustered out of US service in evening. Regt went over to serenade Gen. Hamlin torch light procession...[June 24]...started for Washington...I rode in an ambulance...got to Baltimore...left at 6 PM on the Northern Central RR. Had a smash up. 3 cars smashed. No one hurt...[June 25]...broke the engine 10 miles from Williamsport. Got to Elimra at 1 o'clock in night. Lay in cars till morning...[June 27]...had a big reception and a big dinner. Met [my] wife there. I came home on [the] train...". Most of his grammar has been corrected in the above transcript to aid the reader. Very minor toning, else very good. A great eye-witness record. (Est. $2,000-3,000)
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Carolina Legislator writes a friend
while serving in Orr's Rifles.
676. Confederate Soldier's letter, 3pp., 7.5 x 9.5", Sullivan's Island, S.C., Oct. 15, 1861 written by politician-turned-soldier Zackey Pullman of Co. A. of Orr's Rifles. A crack unit, Orr's Rifles saw more than its share of hard service. For example, it lost 59% of its 537 effectives at Gaines Mill, took 116 casualties at Second Manassas and 170 at Fredericksburg and then another 49% of it's remaining strength at Chancellorsville. In this exceptionally well-written letter, Pullman, also a South Carolina legislator, writes his friend about the complication of serving in the army while also serving as a legislator: "...With reference to my seat in the legislature... I had prepared my resignation... after the appearance in the Charleston papers of the Governor's card and the opinion of the Attorney General accompanying it, but ... the Speaker... said he was unauthorized by law to interfere in the matter, that the legislature itself was the exclusive judge of the qualification of its members... My opinion is that all persons holding office in the Confederate service are constitutionally disqualified and that our seats will be vacated... Our Captain is quite sick... I am half the time in command of the company and I am getting tired of playing Captain without receiving any of the honors... the Gordon has run the blockade and is safe at sea with Slidell & Mason. We would like to re-enact the New Orleans feat at this place... If we can only get in gunshot of them we will pepper them as did the Orleans boys..." Pullman's assumption that Mason and Slidell eluded the Union blockade was premature, for upon reaching Havana they transferred to the British ship, Trent and were seized on the high seas on November 7, nearly bringing about war between the United States and Great Britain. Usual folds, otherwise fine condition. (Est. $200-400)
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677. His brother languished in a Confederate prison. Letter-of-introduction on behalf of George Ely, brother of New York Congressman Alfred Ely, who had the misfortune of being captured at First Bull Run, even though just a spectator! Alfred Ely remained in Rebel prisons for six months until exchanged. It is likely George went to Washington with letters such as this to partly engineer his brother's release... while looking for a patronage job! ALS from George DAWSON (1813-83), New York journalist born in Scotland, protege of the great Thurlow Weed. Editor and publisher of numerous daily papers including the influential Albany "Evening Journal," postmaster of Albany 1861-7. December 7, 1861, to Sec. of State W.H. Seward, in part: "I have not known of his political action of late; but he has friends whom we all know -- being the brother of Alfred Ely, now unfortunately a prisoner..." A fun association piece! (Est. $150-200)
678. Scouting report just received - forwarding intelligence. ALS, Headquarters, U.S. Forces, South Carolina, July 21, 1863, from Col. W.W. H. Davis of the 104 PA Vol. to Major E. W. Smith, Assistant Adjutant-General, Tenth Army Corps. Davis writes: "Major: I have just received the report of Captain (True) Sanborn, Jr. commanding the advanced picket on the island opposite Secessionville, who states that his line is unbroken, & that there are no indications of an advance of the enemy from that quarter. I learn, however, from the soldier who brings in the report, that the enemy were seen this morning moving, in the direction of Charleston, what had the appearance of light artillery. The teams of six horses were distinctly made out. I thought it advisable to communicate this for the information of the brigadier general commanding. W.W. H. Davis" Tipped into a larger sheet, some areas of damp stain. (Est. $150-200)
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679. George McClellan 1864 Presidential campaign letter. 3pp., September 1st, 1864, written from Mansfield, Ohio by Joel Myers to his cousin. Good content regarding the nomination of McClellan for President and the draft for the ongoing Civil War, in part: "There is but little excitement here about the draft. Our city is out, and has a few to spare... Some of our townships are out too, our township paid four thousand five hundred dollars for ten men yesterday, and so filled their quota... Does McClellan's nomination give good satisfaction to his party with you? Or do some of them bolt him? Will any Republicans vote for him?" A fine content letter pertaining to the bitter Presidential election between Lincoln and McClellan. (Est. $100-150)
680. [Election of 1860] Manuscript letter, Jackson, Louisiana, October 18, 1860, from a Southern Unionist favorable to the election of John Breckinridge. This letter discusses the tense political climate of the times and the upcoming presidential election. "Soon the storm is on shore, masts will lean over & Breckinridge [illeg.] fearlessly at the helm of our glorious Republic. Let Douglasites, Bell & Lincoln hounds say & think as they please. God rules; alas, erring, vain, ambitious and haunted mortals...Breckinridge will be elected by the House as Douglas defeats the party by his cowardly conduct, which always, always before has like a bold band of brothers stood shoulder to shoulder against the enemy, which would deluge this glorious union in anarchy & strife...when John C. Breckinridge is president I shall triumph in hearing though God will only know my souls joy...Bell is a sectionalist... Everett is a blue stocking, only fit to rule New England although it is the land of my sires. Douglas is not fit to be president of slaves & Lincoln is [illeg.]...I should rather have God destroy us all at once than he should succeed....Those who raise their voices against this union ought to be hung up higher than John Brown was... This is what I wish someone would do with all disunionists..." The writer of this letter thought, like many others, that Lincoln would fail to get the necessary majority of electoral votes, thereby forcing the election into the House of Representatives, where John Breckinridge had a distinct advantage. If that had transpired, the Civil War may well have been averted, at least for a time. Letter has usual folds with very minor separation. The handwriting is clear and distinct, but rather hard to decipher. Southern letters dealing with the presidential election of 1860 are rarely encountered. (Est. $100-150)
Emotions run high following the Fall of Sumter.
681. An amazingly early war-date 4pp.., Philadelphia citizen's letter, April 15, 1861, 11 1/2 a.m., concerning a near riot at the newspaper office of the Palmetto Flag in Philadelphia, in part: "...the news of the surrender of Fort Sumter is confirmed. The secession flag now waves over its ramparts!!! The greatest excitement exists at the office the `Palmetto Flag' Chestnut St. from Fourth 1/2 way down to Third is one dense mass of excited determined men! The men attempted to issue their poisonous sheet this morning. A crowd soon collected & threats were made of [?] whole office out & dealing summary punishment upon the traitors! They also run up the Southern Flag! This excited the mob & soon it was drawn in! I reached Chestnut St. Just as Mayor Henry (God bless him!) appeared at the window holding in his hand the `Stars & Stripes'. How much dearer are they now to my heart that they are threatened with disgrace & insult...the cheers...went up like the roar of cannon from the...multitude as this precious legacy so dearly won was waved from the office of this detested plague...the Mayor is now addressing the populace. I heard him say `So long as God spares my life treason shall not lift its head amongst us.' There is but one sentiment now, party ties are lost and the people are determined to enforce the laws...written in great haste. I know your patriotic anxiety to hear the news...". Minor toning with archival repairs at fold separations, else very good. (Est. $300-500)
682. An interesting, 3pp. folio, legal document from Pulaski County, IL, Feb. 22, 1866 concerning settling a war claim brought by Richard H. Warner against the US government. In part, demands are made for: "...20,000 brick used by the 7th, 18th, & 10th Regiment Illinois Vol. while encamped at Mound City... $100.00... [and] to rent of house used for hospital for 10th Reg. Ill. Vol from Jany. 1st 1862 until 12th Feby 1862...$34.50... know that the item for rent charged in the above warrant... is a reasonable charge...[and] personally appeared before the...acting Justice of the Peace...Timothy Booth contractor on Public Works and Palatine Steele [and] master brick layer...that the...lot of brick...were used as charged...". A fascinating document that declared that the government owed $134.50 (plus interest!) for a bill that was nearly four years old. No doubt the Feds were addressing Civil War claims of this nature for at least a decade following combat! (Est. $80-120)
683. Two fascinating war-date letters written by an unidentified U.S. Congressman, 8 pp. in total, Washington, D.C., June 1862 & Sept. 1, 1863 to his daughter describing in great detail the appearance of the Congressman's chamber, life in Washington, and of her being a good girl. The first letter appears on "United States of America, Thirty Seventh Congress" letterhead depicting a finely engraved view of the Capitol, in small part: "...above is...a picture of the Capitol of the United States at Washington where Congress meets. Congress is composed of the Senate and House of Representatives. The Senators meet in one large room in one end of the building and the House of Representatives in a still larger room in the other end. These rooms are much larger than any church you ever saw...and handsomely furnished. There are large...galleries...around each room for...visitors...these are filled daily with gentlemen, ladies and little boys and girls...the members have each a little desk in front of him all arranged in regular rows...much as little girls are seated at school...when one makes a speech he stands up while the others keep their seats and remain silent...there are very handsome generals about the Capitol with a great many shade trees and beautiful flower gardens. Every Saturday evening about five o'clock a Band of Music goes there and plays...a great many...people assemble to hear them. Little girls & boys are there in great numbers and they run about and play in the grass...and seem very happy...[Sept. 1, 63]...you must want to return to Washington to see me. Go driving to the Soldier's Home, Insane Asylum, Arlington House, Fort Albany and all the other pleasant drives we took..." Signed only as "Dear Father", and worthy of further research. Near fine. (Est. $200-300)
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684. A war-date 4pp. home-front letter written by Jesse P. Livingston, Dansville, [N.Y.], Mar. 20, 1865 concerning the draft in New York State near the end of the Civil War, in part: "...about the draft...now there seems to be some difficulty in procuring the men for they are not as plenty as they were before the money was raised. I think they waited almost too long...now if they can not furnish their quota by volunteers then the draft will have to come money or not. Some say there is about nine hundred...this district has an unusually large quota to fill because under the last call they were mostly all one year men...[Pvt.] Alfred Van Wormer [43rd N. Y. POW Oct. 12, 1864] is home at present. He is a paroled prisoner from Libby Prison, Richmond. His parole is for thirty days...I guess Jeff Davis or any of his crew will not catch him...again...". Some soiling, else very good. (Est. $100-200)
685. Penciled poem, 3pp., by Union soldier Pvt. Philip Livingston, Co. A, 121st Ohio Volunteers, entitled: "When Sherman Marched down to the Sea." (Dedicated to Sherman's victorious March.) In part: "Our camp-fires shine bright on the mountain...while we stood by our guns in the morning...watched for the foe. When a horseman rode out from the darkness...and shouted `Boys, up and be ready for Sherman will march to the sea...cheer upon cheer for bold Sherman...then forward boys! Forward to battle! We marched on our wearisome way...we stormed the wild hills of Resaca. God bless those that fell...then Kennesaw stark in its glory... frowned down on the flag of the free...when Sherman marched down to the sea...onward we pressed till our banners swept out from Atlanta...the traitor's flag falls...and Sherman marched down to the sea. Proud...was our army that morning that stood by...[and] then Sherman said `Boys you are weary...Savannah is mine!' Then we sang a song for our chieftain...". Livingston survived the campaign, and the war, and was discharged on June 19, 1865. Sometime after his experiences he penned this poem. Some spotting, else very good. (Est. $200-300)
686. [Group] Six (6) Union Soldiers' letters, some on patriotic stationery, and at least one with battle content. Of note is a letter written four days before the fall of Yorktown during McClellan's abortive Peninsular Campaign, by Elbert Corbin of the First NY Artillery, May 1, 1862: "...Two Secesh Prisoners came in to day and they say that there was a whole Brigade lay down their arms day before yesterday saying they would not fight any longer against their country. The 69th N.Y. from our brigade was out on picket duty and they had their flag (the Harp of Ireland) which is a beautiful one. They, the Irish brigade of Rebeldom, said they would never fire on the flag of their country - and now they have them confined in Yorktown. How true it is remains to be seen. There is a heavy gun on the right breaking the stillness of this beautiful May day -- May first -- beautifully May. One month has passed to day since we were leaving Warrington Junction...Now we lay here before Yorktown... I was at Cheisman landing the other day and they were unloading some United States Peace makers. 10 of them were mortars measuring 45 inches acrost the muzzle... the bore was 15 in. carrying a ball weighing 230 lbs.... This is one of the most out landish, low lifed countries that is on Continent. I tell you that this country has become so filthy that the woods are full of all manner of varmins and are full of wood ticks and one cannot touch a bush but they get onto him. I have found five or six on me to day..." Another letter written by "Henry" at Fort Jackson Nov. 25, 1861 notes making a trip to Mount Vernon where they collected "a few curiosities..." He goes on to describe Alexandria: "...it would be a pretty place if it did not have that neglect so common with southern cities. They do not take care of the streets that the northern people do, they allow the hogs to run at large. You will see them laying round any where. This city is probably one of the oldest in Virginia. The buildings show this some of which I should think stood in the time of the flood... The Marshal house where Col. Ellsworth was killed stands a monument to southern folly, it is strongly guarded to prevent its being destroyed. We went in with some others the guard showing us round. The stairs leading to the top of the house, where he was coming down with the Secession rag, are all carried away, and are probably scattered all over the north. I was determined to bring off something to which the sergeant of the guard had his back turned. I stooped down and with my knife chipped out a piece of he floor, near where he fell. The sentiment of the people here is decidedly secession, and they make no bones of explaining it. Nothing but the presence of the soldiers keep them from open rebellion. The Ladies are the worst. They wear secession colors..." More good content. Overall condition very good to fine with only the usual folds, otherwise very bright and clean. (Est. $500-700)
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687. "We are short of Coms & Non-Coms." Obtaining provisions for his Company. Excellent 2pp. letter, August 15, 1863, New Berne, N.C., from Captain William L. Kent to Sergeant Dexter R Ladd, both of the 23rd Massachusetts volunteers. Kent writes: "Sergeant, Since you left here, it has occurred to me that you may find difficulty about getting the articles out here, which I authorized you to purchase in Boston for the use of my Company. I think you had best apply to Capt. McKinn, at #12 Faneuil Hall Square, for a written statement, giving permission to bring the articles out to New Berne for the use of the Company, in order to exempt them from seizure. Get transportation direct from Boston, if possible, about the time your furlough expires...You can show this letter as your authority if required... Corpl. Austin writes me that he is sick at Mason Hosp. Pemberton Sq. I wish you to call on him & see how he is & whether he will soon return. We are short of Coms & Non-Coms..." Together with a receipt for photographs from B.F Evans of Norfolk, VA. The receipt is made out to the same Sergeant Ladd who received the above letter. Two items. (Est. $100-200)
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688. Organizing A Company of "Yankee Hunters." A terrific LS of A. S. Hamilton who adds his rank as "Capt. Miss. Yankee Hunters", 6 x 7.25", Jackson, Miss., August 11, 1861 in which he certifies "...that my company The Yankee Hunters is composed of (80) eight members, that (66) Sixty Six of said members have performed nine days military duty as required... That those who have performed the duty aforesaid are entitled to nine Dollars each... That no part of said money so due has yet been paid or drawn..." The verso bears several endorsements the last of which notes receipt of "...auditors Warrant no 620 for Five Hundred and Ninety four Dollars in full of the above claim... Sept 7, 1861..." Hamilton's company of "Yankee Hunters" eventually became part of the First Mississippi Infantry and saw action at Fort Donelson and Shiloh. Left margin rough, very light toning at extreme margins, otherwise very good condition. (Est. $200-300)
689. Getting new guns! Letter written by Pvt. Henry Olds Battery C, 1st Ohio Light Artillery, Lookout Valley, Tenn., Apr. 10, 1864, 3pp., to "Friend Nathan" concerning his regiment getting new guns, in part: "...we are camped...in Lookout Valley near Chattanooga...we have been shooting, trying our new guns. We got twelve pound guns now. We have got so that we send the shells in pretty close...the report is that the Rebs are getting ready to try us. When we commence to advance...there will be fun...while we were at Bridgeport the snow fell one foot deep...". Olds faithfully served throughout the war, and was discharged June 15, 1865 at Cleveland, Ohio. Soiling, else very good. A nice missive. (Est. $150-200)
690. The 4th NY at Hatcher's Run. Union soldier's letter, on U. S. Christian Commission letter sheet with small dove in the upper left corner, written by Pvt. Charles E. Cole 4th New York Hvy. Art. Co. L, Petersburg, [Va.], Feb. 8, 1865 concerning movements during the action along Hatcher's Run, 2pp., in part: "...last Sunday we got marching orders to move to the left where they have been fighting all day long. At 8 o'clock p.m. we were all in line & off...for a fight...we marched 3 miles to the left & got orders to make ourselves comfortable...just [as we] got our tents up...it was pack up & be ready to move at a moments notice. At...dark we fell in line & off about 1 mile & back to camp...how is the Temperance Society get[ting] along...Sullivan's band [is] down here & no Rudy Tudy in it. We have got a new colonel [John C. Tidball] in our Regt. he is a regular officer...direct to the 2nd Brigade instead of the 4th. Give my best respects to all the nice Girls...". Cole uses a different middle initial than is listed in the Civil War Data base on the web, but research proves that this Cole belongs to the 4th N. Y. Hvy. Art. Minor soiling, else very good. (Est. $100-150)
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A fine letter describing the hardships Southern women faced!
691. Fine content ALS, November 14th [n.y.], n.p. [Virginia Peninsula]. During the American Civil War, life was as hard for Southerners at home as on the battlefield. On November 14, most likely in 1862, a Southern woman named M. Deans wrote her mother with news about her home life: "Except for a rumor through a Negro we know nothing of the doings at York...Negroes give information of all that transpires in Gloucester...Proper, about 3 weeks since, took away the remainder of his negroes...leaving only a few old ones, some escaped but he saved 90. He carried them toward North Carolina...soon after, his barn, full of wheat was burned at Summersville, the next night his Carpenter's Shop. An old woman was seen running from the barn... Rebecca told the Negroes, if anything more was destroyed, that she would write to Proper to sell everyone of the 90. Mrs Griffith has lost all her servants but little children. Miss Sally lost but one man. Mr. J.W.C Catlett has lost all his...I had to dismiss the free girl...Alicia cleans up stairs...she is very slow and stupid..." Deans gave information to her mother on war events: "I told you of Major's return...of the doleful account he gave of all at York...the discomfort...a gunboat...arrested Mr. Washington Smith & his broker because the latter had some share in the burning of a Yankee ship...Herbert...says he misses the excitement he has had for 18 months. Was in 3 skirmishes in one day in Md. & at the battle of Sharpsburg." The battle of Sharpsburg, also known as Antietam, was the bloodiest single day in American history. McClellan and Lee's troops fought to a standoff and Lee retreated the next night. The attractive letter is a fine reminder of the hardships of Southern women. (Est. $300-500)
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692. A touching war-date 1p., Union soldier's letter written in pencil by "L. Wilson" Washington, June 19, `64 concerning the death of his brother Lt. Martin L. Wilson, Co. A, 122nd New York Vol. who was wounded during the battle of the Wilderness May 5, 1864, in full: "I have to inform you that Martin is dead. He died this morning at ten o'clock. Jane & I was both with him. I have got his body embalmed. It probably will be at Memphis Tuesday night then we shall prepare for the funeral. You will notify Edwin & perhaps you both can come. We start for home this evening...we have arranged to have the funeral Sunday at Ten o'clock the 25th...". PLUS; 3 x 5" ink inscribed note reading, in full: "Martin L. Wilson 1st Lieut., 122d Regt. N. Y. V. mortally wounded in battle of the Wilderness, Va. May 1864 died June 19, 1864 in Seminary Hospital Georgetown, Va. Aged 28 years. Here lies another of our mighty brave. Who gave us liberty and took a grave." Some soiling and spotting, else very good. (Est. $150-200)
693. A former slave is duped out of his bounty by a corrupt claims agent. An interesting group of three post-war documents related to bounty due to Pvt. Sandy Blanton, Co. G, 4th United States Hvy. Artillery. The first letter, written by Cairo, Illinois Assistant Postmaster S. R. Hayes, Feb. 7, 1870 to the 2nd Auditor of the U.S. Treasury Department on behalf of Pvt. Blanton regarding his bounty, in part: "...I write you at the request of two colored men who were soldiering. They made their claims for Bounty & back pay in 1865 through Geo. H. Wood claim agent then at this place. Mr. Wood left here some 18 months ago & they can not hear from him & do not know whether their claims have been adjusted or not [their] names are Sandy Blanton & Ben Ross both members of Co. G, 4th Hy. Art. col'd...[on the verso of the above letter, Cairo, Il., July 22, 1870] is written "Sandy Blanton one of the claimants referred to...being a freed man when he was enlisted was told by Mr. Wood...the claim agent that he was entitled to the add'l. bounty...he was discharged on the 24th of Feb. 1866...if rejected he wishes to get back his discharge...". The second document, is 1p. 4to., being the endorsement leaf for the above letter. The postmaster's blood must have boiled when he read this endorsement, in part: "...Washington, D.C., July 27, 1870...respectfully returned with reply that add'l. bounty...were allowed Sandy Blanton April 6, 1868 by certificate No. 441, 669 ($113.). This soldier is reported on [the] rolls as a slave April 19, 1865 and is not entitled to the original bounty. Discharge Cert. [was] returned March 22, 1869...". Then finally the proof that George Wood stole the money, 1p. 8vo., partly-printed letter on Treasury Department letterhead, [Washington], Feb. 15, 1870, concerning the government's settlement of the claim with Claim Agent Wood years earlier, in part: "...the case of Sandy Blanton...was settled Apr. 6, 1868 and cert. No. 441, 669 for $113.00 sent to Geo. H. Wood Cairo, Ill...". Worthy of further research to see if the unfortunate victim ever got his money. (Est. $300-500)
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694. Confederate letter written only nine days after the War starts, on the draft. ALS, 2pp., April 21, 1861, from Mary to her brother. She writes: "My dear Brother, Since I wrote you Civil War has commenced with all its horrors & the troops are leaving here daily... I will try to send you the paper & keep you posted. I am glad you are married & settled & that there will be no necessity for your going unless you are drafted. Let those who have brought the ruin on this country fight it out..." Great historic content. (Est. $150-200)
695. Long Confederate missive with tremendous content: "How wily my good friend General Lee is!" ALS, 12pp. with quite legible cross-writing, March 13, 1863, by a Southern woman, in very small part: "...The last attack of the monitors proved that Fort Sumpter was very vulnerable to those big guns. I see they have plenty of Georgians down there, so I know there will be some good fighting - and alas, plenty of blood spilled. Did my Miss Mary give a sigh to her former admirer Major General Reynolds? I expect the fall of Vicksburg has so worked her up...How wily my good friend General Lee is! He will not send a telegram unless he can announce a victory. I am more anxious about him, for he holds everything in his hands..." Much, much more. Some foxing and slight separation at usual folds, else quite fine. If you want content, this has it!
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696. McClellan and the Chicago Convention. ALS, 4 pp., September 9, 1864, Staten Island, NY, from Ellie Y. Perdy to Mrs. A. B. Underwood of Newtonville, MA. Together with postal canceled cover. In part: "...Very little peace is the lot of a soldier's wife, that is certain. My only comfort consists in thinking the war must be over soon...We were all delighted, and set our flag flying with great enthusiasm. I rejoice the more in that it will put a stop to this abominable Copperhead peace party at the North. What do you all think of the nomination of McClellan for President on such a platform as that at Chicago? It is a disgrace to the country. There is one comfort, McClellan's chance for the office is about as good as mine would be to reign in the White House. I am terribly excited about this election, I want the war to go on, I am for utterly crushing the rebels - Father and I keep getting General Butler's splendid forcible words relative to the pursuing of the war: `Let the mower go on though the adder may writhe, And the Copperhead twine around the blade of the scythe." Toning at usual folds, cover stained. (Est. $100-150)
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697. Exceptional 4pp. ALS, docketed as the retained copy of a letter written in 1827 to a William Thompson. The letter is unsigned, but the content shows the early dissent between Northern politicians and what the writer calls "the Politicians South of the Potomac." The writer notes "that the party in power openly and daringly offered the old Federal Doctrine of `98 - that the people were `their own worst enemies' and were not fit to be trusted with the power of choosing their presidential electors...I felt it became the duty of every man who wished to preserve the republican institutions of our country to exert himself to drive from power that party which has so daringly abused it...I do not like the present state of parties. It was much better in olden times when Republicanism and Federalism prevailed and constituted two distinct and respectable parties opposed to each other upon principle...Those times are past...they array themselves on the old motto of principles not men...If we owe obligations to anyone for producing this state of things, it is to Mr. Monroe...The present division of parties in a national point of view is caused more by sectional considerations...The politicians South of the Potomac will never support an administration if its head be taken north of that line...So long has the South been able to furnish some of the most pure and able statesmen of our country, her politicians claim the right to furnish the future presidents of the U.S. They seem to forget that they have no longer a Washington, a Jefferson, & a Madison but think, speak and feel and act as if the office of president was entailed to them...I now feel it a duty to sustain northern feelings and northern interests, we have much at stake. Our manufacturing are all in the North - the protecting arm of government is necessary to sustain them and the South is deadly hostile to them..." Much more content. A superb look at the sectionalism in the young U.S. that eventually would lead to Civil War referencing the Founding Fathers! (Est. $400-600)
Col. Ellsworth and his Zouaves on the march just two weeks after the firing on Fort Sumter! The "dregs" of the City under Billy Wilson
will put down the Secessionists!
718. Involved ALS, 4pp. on illustrated lettersheet from "Suffolk Trotting Course (5 miles from Philadelphia)," May 10, 1861, from A. B. Burton (one of the first from Ohio to join the Army) to his friend Henry in Cincinnati. Includes postally used cover. Burton discusses Kentucky's status, his unauthorized trip from camp to see Philadelphia and meeting Gen. William S. Harney, hero of the Seminole, Mexican & Indian Wars, displaced from command in St. Louis in 1861 by the machinations of Blair and Gen. Lyon. "I am very glad to hear that Newport is all right and I only hope it will be so all over the State. A great deal depends on the way Kentucky acts at his time. If she only be as true to the Stars and Stripes now as she has been in times past, it is all that could be asked. If Gov. Magoffin and a few more of his stripe were put out of the way, I believe all would be well...If Kentucky should secede and join the Southern Confederacy, it will be the sorriest day's business she ever did; and there are thousands of blinded Secessionists there now, who will live to repent it...I got out upon the road and pretty soon I overtook some more Rovers bound on the same errand...We went on till we came to the main road to town along which a Street Rail Road runs. We were immediately approached by several men, members of the Quaker City Home Guard...who asked us if we had been to breakfast...soon we were pitching into an humble but substantial breakfast of bread and butter, meat, eggs and coffee that was made out of coffee... I believe we aught to have gone back to camp straightaway, but here was Philadelphia with all its sights before us and we might never get the opportunity to see it again, particularly if our precious Colonel commanding had the say. Besides, everybody had gone, almost; there was only about two hundred in camp at that moment, and why shouldn't we go? We considered that anyone who wouldn't run the risk of being put in the `Guard-House' for the sake of seeing Independence Hall was no Patriot...Being offered a free ride to West Philadelphia on the Str. R.R. Cars, we jumped on...before we were aware of it, a gentleman had paid our fare into town. Arrived at the corner of 12th and Market Sts., we jumped off and commenced our search for the Elephantine animal on foot...The first place of interest we visited was the grave of Benjamin Franklin...From here we went down to the Delaware...On the docks we found a good many of the Ohio boys, some of whom were waiting, they said, to see water run up stream. They had never seen tide-water, and they couldn't understand how it could be. We went aboard a large vessel, the `Tuscarora', a Liverpool packet...She is an emigrant vessel and carries abut 800 passengers...soon came to the great object of interest, Independence Hall...The walls are covered from floor to ceiling with portraits in oil of all the greatest men of the revolution. A statue of Washington stands at the end of the room...two of the original chairs which were in the Hall at the time of the signing...the old Liberty Bell, mounted on a beautiful pedestal...The Bell is of iron, about eighteen inches high and has a crack running up the side...It bears the motto `Proclaim Liberty throughout all the Land'...It is impossible to describe...my feelings while surrounded by these sacred relics and under the circumstances. I was a soldier and on my way to help defend the nation and the glorious institutions founded by the men whose images I saw all around me. I felt nerved to suffer anything and to endure anything to accomplish this end and yet my heart was so full I couldn't trust myself to speak and the tears started to my eyes...No wonder the citizens of Philadelphia are a warm-hearted, patriotic people with this old Hall and all its recollections in the midst of them...Our next visit was to the Continental Hotel, where we had a good wash and a cool drink of water and had the pleasure of seeing old Gen. Harney, who was just taking his leave. He is a tall majestic old man with white hair and with that firm, decided tread that I believe all old military men have. The fire is still bright in his eye and there is something about him that reminds one very much of Gen. Scott. We gave him the military salute, as he passed, which he very graciously answered...we steered straight for the Navy Yard...our uniforms admitted us where citizens are excluded...a lot of guns and shells of all sizes from 2 inch guns up to those that carry a ball weighing 212 lbs solid shot. They do not, however, use balls of that weight now, but shells of the same size...Among the cannon are eight that were taken from the British ship Siam by the old Constitution in the war of 1812...we went on board the 64 gun ship, St. Lawrence, which is being refitted...I had no idea that war vessels were built so heavy. She looks from the inside, where you can see her timbers, like a perfect fort in herself. You would think it impossible for a cannon ball to ever penetrate her side...There are about 1000 men at work in the yard now, hurrying things as much as possible..." Much more excellent content. (Est. $250-300)
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Describing war fever in New York just after Ft. Sumter: "I will send you... a rosette, red, white and blue. Almost every young man & some old ones...wear similar ones pinned on their coats... Lager beer saloons & very many private residences have large flags and tri-colored streamers waving from their windows"
719. ALS, 4pp., New York, April 29, 1861, from a woman to her brother in California. The letter is written just 2 weeks after the fall of Fort Sumter. She writes: "It is with a sad heart I sit down to pen you these few lines. The excitement in our city the past 2 weeks preparing for war & hearing how bad many of our troops have fared, already some of them being 24 hours without food & laying out in the open air & after they reached Washington, sleeping on stone floors without even a straw bed under them, the thought has made my heart sick. I am so glad you are so far away, for as I have seen our troops marching through the streets & preparing to leave, although they are no kin to me & strangers, yet the tear of sympathy I could not keep back when I reflected on the hardships, privations & probable death before them. I hope nothing will induce you or Theodore to go. You neither could stand one month...the hardships of marching & privations of a soldier's life. Quite a number of our men have been sun struck...Do write to Theodore & beg him not to think even should there be a call of soldiers from California, to enlist. I am sure he never could stand it. He used to be weak in his bowels & I hear a number of our men are sick with bowel complaints...I will send you the Tribune. Unfold it and you will see a rosette, red, white and blue. Almost every young man & some old ones...wear similar ones pinned on their coats...I wish you both could take the wings of the morning and fly here to see the display of beautiful flags from all the Episcopal & Catholic church steeples. Public school houses, all public buildings, Hotels...Lager beer saloons & very many private residences have large flags and tri-colored streamers waving from their windows...I happened to be passing the Public School in Allen St. the other day just as they were preparing to raise the flag. The staff was out & the boys were outside the whole length of the block, each with a small flag in their hand and cheering at the top of their voices as the stars were first seen...and then as it unrolled & the stripes were seen & then waving so beautifully in the air, it was a soul stirring scene that I shall not soon forget...I met Cousin Sarah Newnan in the street...her husband believes the same as Uncle Abraham in Old Snow [Mormon Apostle Lorenzo Snow, 1814-1891, Fifth President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints] being a prophet sent by God & she told me this war was fulfilling his prophesy & that here husband & all Snow's followers were rejoicing over the war & he thinks it will never end until all the wicked are destroyed & then the 144,000 righteous ones will be caught up in the air. How absurd. I don't know a more wicked set of people. They rejoice over every calamity they hear of & say it is a feast for them..." Fine, reflective content. (Est. $200-300)
720. A man killed while celebrating the victory at Gettysburg! Interesting 4pp. ALS, Hillsdale, NY, July 10, 1863, from S. A. Foster to his cousin Darwin Esmond of Henry Marshall Co., Illinois. With postally-canceled cover, includes a description of a celebration over the good news from Gettysburg and Vicksburg: "We had a very sad accident here Tuesday night. We had some very good news and we thought it best to burn some powder over it, so we raised some money and bought a keg of powder and commenced firing the cannon and fired until between 2 & 1 o'clock and when the last gun was fired, George H. Holland was killed. They put in too heavy a charge and burst the cannon and a piece struck him on the head and he died in two hours & ten minutes...He stood in the door of the Bar room looking out after it struck him. It struck over the bar and broke the boards..." An interesting, odd missive with fun content. (Est. $70-90)
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721. "If I live through the battle you will soon hear from me again and if not you will know that I have gone to my lovely home and that I died as a Christian." Colorful 2pp. ALS, Camp Mich, March 10, 1862, on illustrated, red and blue lettersheet depicting George B. McClellan with the slogan "WE HAVE BEAT OUR LAST RETREAT" (with matching, postally canceled cover), from James Henry Rikert to Celia Gibson of Watrousville, MI. Rikert, who enlisted as a 21 year old Private at Fort Wayne, MI and mustered into Company G of the MI 5th Infantry, writes in part: "...About a week ago I sent you another letter...to inform you that we (were) on the eve of a march on Manasses, but as a heavy rain came on, it was postponed and tomorrow I expect we will march for sure. Tonight we got small oil-cloth tents to carry with us which will accommodate two men and our big tents are to be left where they now are... This may be the last letter perhaps that you will ever get from me, but if I live through the battle you will soon hear from me again and if not you will know that I have gone to my lovely home and that I died as a Christian. I hope that you will excuse this short letter for we are very busy preparing for the march tomorrow..." Fine content on great patriotic stationery. (Est. $150-250)
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"The Federal army has started and I think it will not stop until we whip the rebels... We had a fight the other day at Bulls Run. We lost about one hundred and fifty men killed and wounded. Our men fought well, but the rebels was too strong for us. I think old Jackson is smarter than all of our Generals."
722. [Civil War Letter Group with Bull Run Content.] Archive of five (5) letters, approximately 12pp. total, dated from October 4, 1861 through September 8, 1862, from Daniel O. Corbin, Co. H. 18th Regt. Mass. Vols., to his father in Franklin, MA. Two letters are on patriotic lettersheets: one with a red and blue illustration of Gen. McClellan in a star with the words "Commander of the Federal forces on the Potomac", the other a large red and blue illustration of Liberty holding flag and standing on the globe. Three letters are accompanied by postal-canceled transmittal covers. In part: Camp Barnes, October 4, 1861: "We have moved our camp. It is about seven miles from the Potomac. We left hour [sic} camp near the Potomac last Saturday knight. We took our blankets on our back and started. We expected to fight but the rebels all left. We had to sleep on the ground until Wednesday knight. We are about half a mile from Falls Church... There is regiments all around us. Our troops have took possession of Munson's Hill. We expect to have to march on before long. The Federal army has started and I think it will not stop until we whip the rebels. I think we can do it..." November 24, 1861: "...I am growing fat. I way [sic] one hundred and thirty six. I don't have much to do now but eat. I eat all of the grub I can get. I don't have to do any guard duty. I think I am lucky to get rid of doing my guard duty. Alfred has just come in to camp. He has been out on picket guard. They can't have any fire out on picket...We had a great review last week. It was the largest review there ever was in the United States. There was over fifty thousand men. They looked handsome. I had the pleasure of carrying the stars and stripes...We don't like our Colonel very well..." Corbin writes on September 6, 1862: "I have not had a chance to write before since we left Harrison's Landing...four weeks ago, and we have ben [sic] on our feet ever since and we are now where we was six months ago...I don't think the rebellion is enny nearer closed than it was a year ago. We had a fight the other day at Bulls Run. We lost about one hundred and fifty men killed and wounded. Our men fought well, but the rebels was too strong for us. I think old Jackson is smarter than all of our Generals. Our Generals are not good for much. I shouldn't wonder if the South gained all they ask for yet they are in a fair way for it now..." The letter of September 8, 1862 includes: "I want to know what you think about the war. It don't look as though it would be settled very soon. I have made up my mind that I shall not see Franklin for two years to come..." One letter archivally repaired at fold separations, one letter torn at top, otherwise fine. A great, detailed record. (Est. $300-400)
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He served in Pickett `s Brigade and participated in the Confederate General's charge at Gettysburg... written a few months before that ill-fated engagement.
723. Fine Civil War ALS, 4pp. on different lettersheets, one blue, one tan, together with postal-canceled cover with pair of Jeff Davis stamps. "In Camp near Ivor Station Southampton County, Va., April 4, 1863," from William H. Phillips, a sergeant in Co. F, 14th VA regiment (part of Pickett's Division) to his parents. Philips had a "spotty" service record, alternately listed as AWOL, as a P.O.W., returning to service in time to fight at Gettysburg. He fought under Confederate Major General George Edward Pickett (1825-75) who formed the brigades for the ill-fated charge on the final day at Gettysburg. (Pickett never forgave Lee for the destruction of his command, and died a bitter man.) Phillips writes, in part, of his desire to leave the army just 3 months before he fought with his regiment at Gettysburg: "I have bin from home now gouing on 3 months and have not got but one letter from you all since I left and you all have a full half a dozen from me... I don't expect to write you word that I am entirely well any more while I am in service, for I have the chronic diarrhaea, just like it was last summer. I am taking medicine from the doctor now, though I keep up and about, and doing my business. Pa I saw Mr. Owen this morning and he told me that he heard that Mr. William Goods & Mr. Mat Winkler was both dead. I was very sorry to hear it indeed. You will please write me word if it is true. Wesley came down here a few days ago, and I did not hear him say a thing about either of their deaths. Wesley came down to get a substitute for Hart Simmons, he told Wesley to bring him one, if he had to pay five thousand dollars for him. I understand that Uncle Pete Rainey is going to substitute for some person, who is it? Do you know?...I wrote you word in my last letter to direct your letters to Ivor Station, but instead of directing them to that place, you mite just direct them to Petersburg and they will come strait. We are still expecting a fight down here as soon as the ground gets firm enough to use artillery. We are certainly seeing a pritty hard time of it now, we are only getting a quarter of a pound of meat a day and one pound of flour. If it was not for my money I believe I would perish, I have spent upward of one hundred dollars in provisions since I left home, I eat the last of the ham you sent me yesterday morning...I have to say if you will fix any way to get me out of this war, I will live with you as long as I am alive, and work as hard as any negro you ever see in your life, as to saying, no one cant put in a substitute thar is no such thing, anyone can put in a substitute now as well as they ever could, they cost more money, that is all. Uncle Sam will help you out if you will undertake to get me out. I am perfectly satisfied for that to be my part of your estate no matter what you may be worth at the time of your death. That is all I shall ever want. This you need not to show this to anyone. I will say this to you, I am comming out of this war, one way or the other before very long. I am determined to leave this place. I have become diseased and can't stand advice, and I had as lief die one death as another. You will please let one hear from you soon. Don't see any uneaszness about me. I will wait for your motions now a while, and see what you can do for me, if you please do your best for me as this is the last time I shall ever make the attention..." An important missive from a confirmed participant in one of America's most celebrated battles.
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