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    Confederate Lieutenant Colonel Alexander "Sandie" Pendleton Autograph Letter Signed "A.S. Pendleton." Four pages of a bifolium, 7.5" x 9.75", "Camp at Hamiltons Xing [Virginia]," April 26, 1863. Writing to his mother, Pendleton describes the countryside ("This country is beginning to look beautiful now - and in time of peace, it must have been a lovely region & pleasant to dwell in. The people are perfectly unconcerned about the Yankees & wherever there is any forces left to work are busy with their crops") and the extensive fortifications the men have erected, in part: "This large army has done very little damage except in clearing off the woods this winter & most of the enclosures remain intact . . . The greatest destruction & change in the appearance of the country is by the long lines of trenches & the redoubts which crown every hillside from ten miles above Fredericksburg to twenty miles below. The world has never seen such a fortified position." He goes on to describe the trenches in great detail, stating that they are "5 feet wide & 2 ½ deep, having the earth thrown towards the enemy making a bank still larger. They follow the contour of the ground & hug the bases of the hills as the wind to & from the river, this giving natural flanking arrangements & from the tops of the hills frown[?] the redoubts for sunken batteries & barbette batteries . . . the whole protected by a strong stockade, stands out definitely in the open plain to receive our Howitzers & deal death broadcast to the Yankees should their curiosity tempt them to an investigation. But I fear we must go & hunt up Mr. Hooker. He has no intention of paying us a visit. I begin to be anxious for the start. Of course I dread the danger & distress that must come to so many, but our army is in fine condition & so surely as we meet Hooker's army, defeat sore & bloody is in store for him & I hope decisive victory for us."

    Stonewall Jackson, on whose staff he was serving, had become a father several months earlier and Pendleton makes note that both mother and baby were visiting: "Mrs. Jackson is here with the General . . . looking exceedingly well - better than I ever remember to have seen her. And the baby is surprisingly like the General for so young a creature. On Thursday he had it baptized by Mr. Lacy and gave the singularly incongruous names of Julia Laura. Julia for his mother & Laura for her youngest sister. . . . as there is very little to do now in the way of office business, he spends a good deal of time with her."

    Four days later, Hooker indeed came to pay the Confederates a visit, and the Battle of Chancellorsville was underway. The battle lasted an entire week and proved to be a Confederate victory. Lee, however, was losing his most aggressive field commander. Gen. Stonewall Jackson was mistakenly shot by his own pickets while returning to their camp on the third night of the battle (and just six days after Sandie wrote this letter). His left arm was amputated and he was thought to be improving, but pneumonia had set in. He died on May 10, 1863.

    Following Jackson's death Pendleton served on the staffs of Gens. Richard S. Ewell, during the Gettysburg Campaign, and Jubal A. Early, who made him chief of staff with the rank of lieutenant colonel. Pendleton was wounded in the abdomen on September 22, 1864, during the Battle of Fisher's Hill. He died the following day.

    Scattered spots of light foxing and staining throughout. Separation has begun at the edges of the main vertical fold. Folds show light toning.


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    Auction Dates
    June, 2015
    12th-13th Friday-Saturday
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