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    William H. Foss, 1st Battalion Maine Sharpshooters, Autograph Letter Signed "William H. Foss." Four pages of a bifolium, 8" x 9.25", "Camp on the Weldon Railroad"; August 30, 1864.

    William H. Foss (listed in the Civil War database as William Foster, Jr.) enlisted at the age of 21 as a private. He was mustered into Company B, 1st Maine Sharpshooters on November 4, 1864. He later transferred to the 20th Maine Infantry in June 1865. In a letter to his friend Clark, Foss reports on the experiences had on the front line at the Battle of Globe Tavern. It reads in part:

    "...the Old 5 Corps has made a raid and have been very successful for we now hold possession of one of the rebs most important rail roads...Friday 20th we received orders to hold ourselves in readiness to move at short notice at daylight we started and marched about 6 1/2 miles and firing was heard in front the command was halted and skirmishers thrown out the command moved on until we reached this road the 1st (to which I belong) being in front commenced tearing up the track the other 3 divisions moved across the road and formed in line of Battle to meet the Enemy if they should attempt to drive us away we did not have long to waite for the rebs soon showed themselves in three lines of Battle and they came on with a yell and were repulsed they charged five or six times the last time they massed all of their force on our right and they was successful for a time driving our boys a short distance however our lines quickly reformed and our boys making a desperate charge down regained the former position. Sustaining heavey loss & inflicting severe loss upon the Enemy thus ended the first days work...our picketts had been driven in during Saturday Knight and when it was light enough we could see the rebs marching & counter marching about 10 o'clock they came down upon us like a thunderstorm I was stationed in the front line of Breast Works and it pained me to see them come for I knew they could not accomplish what they desired and I do hate to see human beings shot down like wilde beast well they came on in four lines and the front line got up to Near to retreat and Surrendered the other three lines broke and ran in every direction. I have been told that we made a general assault on Sunday and was defeated at every point we captured seven thousand prisoners and seven stand of Battle Flags we still hold possession of the road and cannot be driven from our position there...William H. Foss...P.S. Sometime last month there was an order read to us that any man having a rifle at home and would send and get it should be organized and be called first Battalion Independent Sharp Shooters I sent home and got my rifle and we have been organised two hundred of us two companys A & B I like much better than in the regt..."

    Condition: Flattened mail folds, with light toning at the folds. Minor separations to some folds. Light soiling and foxing, with tape residue on the top and bottom edges of page 3 and 4.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2020
    22nd Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 8
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 254

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