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    C.S.A. General Henry Heth Autograph Letter Signed - A. P. Hill Joins the Confederacy H Heth Lt Col & A.Q.M.G". Two pages with docketing, lined 5" x 8" paper, Quartermaster Generals Office Richmond, May 7, 1861, to the governor of Virginia [John Letcher]. Just days after Heth had resigned from the U.S. Army and joined the Confederate Army, he petitions the governor to offer his friend A. P. Hill a commission. Heth, at this time, was serving as Robert E. Lee's quartermaster in Virginia. The letter reads, in part: "I take the liberty of calling your attention to the fact that A. P. Hill late of the U.S. Army is now here...and offers his services to Va, his native state. He graduated at West Point in 1847 [as did Heth]- he brings with him great military experience, especially as an officer of Light Artillery, his standing in the Army is very high...Mr. Hill has been offered by the Governor of Ky a Colonelcy, but declined on principal, thinking it was his duty to offer his services to his Native State..." There is an additional note beneath written and signed by John Strode Barbour, Jr., confirming and corroborating what Heth had said about Hill's qualifications. Barbour was, at the time, president of the Orange and Alexandria Railroad.

    Whether influenced by Heth's recommendation or not we don't know, but Hill was commissioned colonel of the Virginia 13th Infantry Regiment two days after this letter was written. He distinguished himself at First Manassas, receiving a promotion to brigadier general the following February, to major general later in 1862, and to lieutenant general in 1863 after the death of Stonewall Jackson (at about the same time Heth was promoted to major general). Heth and Hill would both have controversial roles to play at Gettysburg and both were personal favorites of General Robert E. Lee. Hill was killed on April 2, 1865 at Petersburg, just days before Lee's surrender at Appomattox Court House. He had once said that he had no desire to see the collapse of the Confederacy and he didn't. This historical letter is in very fine condition with original folds.
    Provenance:The William Turner Collection




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    Auction Dates
    June, 2007
    24th-25th Sunday-Monday
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