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    [Civil War]. Large Archive of Documents Relating to the Union Occupation of New Orleans. An archive of approximately two hundred documents dating from the years 1862 to 1864 of personal and official correspondence, financial records, military records, and miscellaneous administrative documents nearly entirely focused on the Union Occupation of New Orleans.

    Included in the archive are approximately five letters from Major General Benjamin Butler along with a number of letters from soldiers and civilians present during the tumultuous period. Some worthy of highlight include:

    General John H. Bernos Autograph Letter Signed on Butler's Proclamation. Two pages, 8"x 12", Opelousas; May 16, 1862. Louisiana Militia soldier writes to describe the efforts to supply the inhabitants of New Orleans by loyal Confederates who had escaped. Bernos believed that the Union troops were keeping supplies for themselves following Butler's Proclamation. It reads in part: "...After having entered into an agreement with the city government Gen. Butler, without allowing a reasonable time for his fulfillment by the authorities issues a proclamation in which he virtually charges the city with not having performed the contract and assumes the responsibility of furnishing provisions to the people...the country is entirely demoralized for want of some measures to defend it and Governor Mouton writes today to Gen. Pratt that most shameful scenes were enacted yesterday by the militia which were called out..."

    Major General Benjamin Butler Autograph Letter Signed. Two pages of a bifolium, 7.75" x 9.5", New Orleans, Louisiana; December 8, 1862. Addressed to Brigadier General Meigs relating to roofing the Customs House building.

    Thomas O. Moore Autograph Letter Signed. One page of a bifolium, 5" x 8", New Orleans; March 9, 1862. Addressed to General Beauregard. It reads in part: "This note will be handed to you by Col. Numa Augustine. The Col has been a long time in command of the Regiments of Orleans Guard...The Regiment has been disorganized by a portion of it having volunteered to go to you & Col. Augustine has thus lost his command..." Docketed in pencil by Beauregard. Signed, "Thos. O. Moore."

    Thomas B. Prescot Autograph Letter with General Butler Content. Four pages of a bifolium, 4.75" x 8", Ships Island; April 23, 1862. Addressed to an Abram. It reads in part: "...after a somewhat hard passage of forty days we landed on this Island...we are expecting to leave soon and yet no one knows when. We have orders to be ready. We had a review of...troops under Butler just before he left with the expedition and it was a grand sight. They formed in line on the South beach & the line extended four miles..." Unsigned.

    Mary Newman Autograph Letter Signed with Capture of New Orleans Content. Ten pages of a bifolium, 4.25" x 6.5, New Orleans; May 28, 1862. Addressed to her sister, Mary writes... In part: "...We have been sold, treacherously sold, by those whom we always thought staunch friends of the confederacy. Our troops fought hard and valiantly down at the forts for eleven days and nights, and they (the Yankees) say, they would never have been able to pass the forts had it not been for traitors. If I live to a grand old age I shall never forget the day the alarm was given that the Yankee fleet was coming up our noble river...The Federal army...gave us the option of surrendering the city, or having it shelled. We preferred the latter. Never, never would we give up our Crescent is fearful to contemplate living in such bondage for any length of time..."

    Edwin S. Wedgewood Autograph Letter Signed. Two pages, 5" x 8", Quarantine Station, Mississippi; June 25 [1862]. To his friend, Daniel E. Worthley of Co. I, 26th Massachusetts Regiment, regarding the sickness in the regiment. It reads in part: "...there has been a good many sick, at one time there was 40 is we shall go up the river in a few days...I am a coming down to the fort in a few days if I can...."

    Seth S. Eastman Autograph Letter Signed with Policing New Orleans Content. Two pages, 6.5" x 14.25", New Orleans, Louisiana; June 2, 1[8]62. Describes his experience on guard duty to an unknown correspondent. It reads in part: "...I was out on Police last night. I shall have to tell you we had some fun...we arrested a hoar in the first place. She was in the street drunk raising hell. And the next thing was two citizens fighting. We arrested them...when we were going back they was a man called us in gave us a drink of gin snapps and we were all feeling tight..."

    Two Nelson S. Andrews Autograph Letters Signed. In these two letters (three and four pages of a bifolium, respectively), Andrews writes to his father describing the City and his recovery from an illness, the scarcity of supplies, and the state of the city after a few months of occupation. The letter dated Aug 6, 1862 reads in part: "...what I have seen has made me think it is a pretty big place and...generally a kind of hard place I reckon..." On November 7, 1862, he writes, " is impossible of a soldier to get any liquor and in many of them you cant get even a glass of water, one man was hauled up the other day and fined $200 for giving a man, a solider, a glass of water because a man went and swore that it was gin. It is getting to be a pretty gay place here to what it was when we first came. Balls, Dances & Theatre's are the go every night...All the Bar Rooms, Saloons and most all places of entertainment are open Sundays as well as any other day..."

    A large portion of the material is miscellaneous administrative documents relating to the occupation, the majority of which is affiliated with Captain Mark Prime, Assistant Quarter Master in New Orleans. They range from supply orders, such as lumber, iron, tents, nails, whiskey, coffins, and ambulances, to official passes, newspapers, oaths of allegiances taken by Confederates, and pay roll material. Also includes financial records of supplies ordered for Fort Jackson. There is also material related to Alfred Iverson, George Morris, General Mansfield Lovell, and Mayor John T. Monroe.

    Condition: Occasionally toned, soiled and foxed with intermittent closed tears and edgewear. Ranges from Good to Near Fine.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    May, 2021
    19th Wednesday
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