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    Description

    [Maryland Secessionist John Hanson Thomas]. General John A. Dix Autograph Letter Signed. One page with integral blank, 5" x 8", on his personal "D" letterhead, Baltimore, April 12, 1862. Writing to Annie Gordon Thomas on the first anniversary of the shelling of Fort Sumter, which inaugurated the war, Gen. Dix explains that he "cannot encourage the hope that you will be able just now to arrange the matter of business referred to. All communications, even on domestic matters, are discontinued for the present. I will not fail to advise you the moment they are resumed." Dix was a former U.S. senator for New York who briefly served (less than two months) as President Buchanan's final secretary of the treasury. When war broke out, he was commissioned a major general of volunteers, but being too old for a field command (he was 63 at the time), he was given command of the Departments of Maryland and Pennsylvania. As such, he arrested the secession-leaning faction of the Maryland legislature, including Mrs. Thomas' husband, Dr. John Hanson Thomas, on the day that the General Assembly was to put the idea of secession to a vote. Dr. Thomas served nearly six months in military prison before being released in February 1862.

    With a copy of an undated John Dix letter responding to Samuel W. Smith, president of the Maryland Club, whose premises "were invaded & searched by persons professing to act under your orders." Smith states that he "cannot prevent this occasion to pass without expressing my sense of the insult, which has thus been placed on myself and upon each of the members . . . and upon the legal right that it invades." In response, Gen. Dix acknowledges that the men were acting under his orders as it was "reported to the police that arms were secreted there & the information came from a source which was believed to be reliable." But having been given "false information," he assures Smith that it was not "intended as any indignity to you or any of your associates." Folds. Minor loss of paper at the intersections.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2014
    8th-9th Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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