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    [Samuel Wylie Crawford] Post-Civil War Archive of Thirty Letters to Union General Crawford dating from 1874 to 1892 from various Union Generals, political figures, and other notables. Content ranges from purely social to commentary on origin of the war as well as disputes regarding events and critiques of articles and memoirs that were being published.

    Crawford was a U.S. army surgeon and was on duty at Fort Sumter at the time of the bombardment by rebel forces that launched the Civil War. The attack had a profound effect, a month later Crawford made a drastic career change, leaving medicine in favor of accepting a commission as a major in an infantry division. After being promoted to brigadier general in April 1862, Crawford led a brigade at the Battle of Cedar Mountain, and was later wounded at the Battle of Antietam.

    It is fair to say that his experience at Fort Sumter was life-changing and years later, it would become the focus of his book The Genesis of the Civil War: The Story of Sumter 1860-1861 (New York: Charles L. Webster, 1887). A few of the letters in this archive are written in response letters from him while he is researching his book.

    Winfield Scott Hancock, two Autograph Letters Signed, with a third Letter Signed.
    William T. Sherman
    , two Autograph Letters Signed, one dated September 21, 1874 sending "a card photograph which is by Brady of this city..." Near fine. Second letter has some toning and a bit mat burn on verso.
    Henry M. Hoyt Autograph Letter Signed, 4pp., great content responding to Crawford's book "You have carefully refrained from calling the actors in secession as conspirators... But I must and do hold the 'the assistant Secretary of State' - some members of the Cabinet - and members of Congress who kept their seats while conspiring to help the rebellion were conspirators..."
    Gouverneur K. Morris Autograph Letter Signed, April 24, 1882. Declining to attend a ceremony at Gettysburg, adding: "Don't let the name of Genl Meade be forgotten nor any note of detraction go unsilenced on that field..."
    William S. Rosencrans Autograph Letter Signed on House of Representatives letterhead.
    Fitz-John Porter Autograph Letter Signed, 2 pages, May 16, 1892, asking for Crawfords aid in securing Col. McClellan's manuscripts and materials so that they may be published to honor the gallantry of the 5th Corps. Also references Generals Web and Chamberlain.
    Otis O. Howard Letter Signed on West Point letterhead.
    Wallace W. Johnson two Autograph Letters Signed both with excellent regarding events at Gettysburg. Johnson received the Congressional Medal of Honor for his gallantry at the Battle of Gettysburg.
    Joseph Holt, Secretary of War under Buchanan, Autograph Letter Signed, 4pp., March 26, 1887. Great content responding to Crawford's "unfriendly criticism" of Buchanan in his book. In particular he refutes Crawford "that general members of the Cabinet - myself included - had called on Prest Buchanan & threatened to resign if a certain letter to the commissioners of South Carolina- the draught of which he had prepared - was sent. I denounce this to you as a rebel fiction."
    Edwin A. Post sends a congratulatory letter for his book, 4pp., March 29, 1888. Great content noting the conspiracies leading to the rebellion, noting in particular the weaknesses of Buchanan adding: "Had there been a man of determination... like Andrew Jackson during the nullification times - the smoldering fire would have been extinguished..."
    Daniel Sickles two Autograph Letters Signed. In an undated letter "Sunday", 4 pages: "I like the idea of memorials at Gettysburg representing Brigades - Divisions - Corps. The Regimental notion has obtained so strong a footing that it is now difficult to supersede it. My old Brigade - and the Irish Brigade will generally combine for Brigade Memorials..." Near fine condition. Second letter has dampstaining.
    Frederick W. Seward Autograph Letter Signed, Washington, August 20, 1879. At top noting "Unofficial" and in part: "It is not necessary for me, at this late day, to prove that my father was an anti-slavery man." He recommends that Crawford refer to the senior Seward "Life and Letters", page 778 for an account of the incident he inquires about.

    Condition varies from good to near fine, with the majority of the material being very good. Additional items in this lot are on our website at

    More Information:

    Levi P. Morton Letter Signed as vice president.

    Robert M. McLane Letter Signed relating that Crawford's request for military books and information as to the methods  of obtaining intelligence information by the French Army have been denied by the French Minister of Foreign Affairs. McLane adds, "I am not surprised at it as I know how strong the tendency here is to keep everything connected with the organization of the army very secret."  

    J. Whitelaw Reid two Letters Signed.

    Henry R. Magruder Autograph Letter Signed.

    James B. Fry Autograph Letter Signed.

    R.B. Rickett Letter Signed.

    G.B. Hotchkiss Autograph Letter Signed regarding plans for memorials at Gettysburg.

    W.D. Hardin Autograph Letter Signed requesting  any information Crawford may have regarding the movements of the 12th Regiment at the Battle of Gettysburg.

    Cornelius Vanderbilt II Letter Signed.

    Hamilton Fish Letter Signed, 2 pages, April 23, 1880. Good content noting, "Great injustice has, I think, been done to Genl Anderson in the suggestion of indifference or want of loyalty during the Rebellion. It was a [illeg.] trial for a Southern man to be loyal & adhere to the Union which the South was attempting to destroy."Dampstaining and heavy soiling.

    [Gouverneur Warren] Autograph Letter Signed from an unknown recipient relating news of Warren's death: "I heard a touching account of his last moment from a friend at Newport which deepens my disgust at Sheridan's conduct."

    Joseph R. Hawley Autograph Letter Signed on Senate Chamber letterhead, 2 pages, September 23, 1883. Responding to Crawford's request for the name of the "gentleman to whom Gen. Sheridan made the remarks upon your command just before Lee's surrender." Paper loss at left margins, not affecting text, some dampstaining and soiling.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2009
    16th-17th Friday-Saturday
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