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    General Grant informs Charles Hoadley that his "brother, Maj. F. W. Hoadly, C.S.A. was killed some time during the latter part of the siege of Vicksburg"

    Ulysses S. Grant Autograph Letter Signed with Related Archive. The U. S. Grant ALS is one bifolium page, 7.75" x 9.75", Vicksburg, Mississippi, August 3, 1863, to Charles J. Hoadley, of the Connecticut State Library at Hartford. In this letter, the general informs Hoadley that his brother, Confederate Major Frederick W. Hoadley, has been killed during the Siege of Vicksburg. The accompanying archive consists of nine Civil War-dated letters (November 1862 through February 1864), in which Charles Hoadley tries to establish the location of his brother's body, as well as gather details on his death. Also included are two cartes de visite and over thirty antebellum letters of Major Hoadley. The letters and photos bear some soiling and foxing.

    General Grant's letter reads in full: "Your brother, Maj. F. W. Hoadly, C.S.A. was killed some time during the latter part of the siege of Vicksburg. He now lays buried I think in the yard of a citizen of this place by the name of Williams [Victor Wilson]. At all events the grave is known to many citizens here with whom your brother was a great favorite. Very Respectfully yours, [signed] U. S. Grant Maj. Gen. U.S.A." Also included is the transmittal envelope postmarked from Memphis on August 8.

    The two cartes de visite feature a bust shot of Confederate Major Frederick Hoadley in civilian clothing. Both are identical images with the photographer's imprint on the verso of W. G. Grotecloss of New York. The antebellum letters (over thirty) are from Frederick to his brother Charles, all dated during the early-1850s from South Carolina.

    Frederick Hoadley migrated from Columbia, South Carolina, to Little Rock, Arkansas, in the 1850s for a business opportunity. When the Civil War began, he enlisted with the Confederate Army in Co. "D", Arkansas 4th Infantry Battalion, which was organized in Little Rock on October 16, 1861. Frederick was commissioned a captain as the battery left Arkansas for Columbus, Kentucky, on December 1. He and his company soon saw action at the Battle of Island Number Ten at Kentucky Bend on the Mississippi River in the spring of 1862. The battle devastated the company, which was reorganized as Company "H," 1st Tennessee Heavy Artillery Regiment (also known as Hoadley's Heavy Artillery Battery, commanded by Capt. Hoadley). The regiment moved on to Vicksburg in June 1862, and Frederick was promoted to major.

    While in Vicksburg, he became engaged to Miss Wilson (daughter of Victor Wilson). Unfortunately, Charles and the rest of the family learned through newspapers that Frederick had been killed, but they did not know any details, so Charles took the bold step of writing General Grant asking for more information. Grant responded with the letter above, informing Charles that Frederick was killed during the Siege of Vicksburg, on June 8, 1863 (less than a month before the city fell to Grant's Union Army). Charles, though, wanted to know more, so he set out on his own fact-finding mission. The following nine letters (all included in this lot) are Charles' attempts (and results) at getting more details.

    Frederick Hoadley's only letter to his mother following his enlistment on November 12, 1862, from Vicksburg (included in this archive). This is a curt letter that merely informs his mother that he had been "serving on the Mississippi River for the last fifteen months at Columbus, Ky."

    Charles Hoadley's retained copy of a letter written to Victor F. Wilson of Vicksburg on November 10, 1863, mentioning his brother's only letter to his mother (included below) and asking if his brother "be buried on your premises." Another retained copy from Hoadley to Wilson dated December 21, 1863, in which Charles acknowledges receipt of General Grant's letter (above). Charles reports that he has received two accounts of his brother's death: in one, his brother's head was "taken off by a shell" and in the other "he was shot through the heart." Charles' request of Wilson is for any information regarding his brother, especially a photograph because the Hoadley family knew "so little about Frederic after the war began."

    A letter from an unknown person who had "made some inquiries about Maj. Hoadley" and been informed "by one of his old company [that] he was Maj. of the first Tennessee Heavy Artillery and was killed in passing from one fort to another and was shot through the heart and killed instantly." This unsigned letter also specifies the location of Frederick's grave.

    A Victor Wilson ALS from Vicksburg, November 27, 1863, to Charles regarding the death of Frederick and reporting, "Your Brother Major F. W. Hoadly is buried in this Citty in my garden he was killed on the 21 June by the Exploding of a rifle shell which killed him instantly in the Early spring." Wilson also informs Charles that he had kept Frederick's clothing, but when the U.S. Army entered Vicksburg after the siege ended in July 1863, "Lt. Col. Bingham sent a file of soldiers and put me out of my House (taking it for his own use)." According to the letter, when Wilson was allowed possession of his house later he found that all of Frederick's clothing was gone. He had heard of where Frederick's clothing might be: "his uniform I heard of on a negroe in the Federal army." With the original transmittal envelope postmarked from Vicksburg.

    A Victor Wilson ALS from Vicksburg, January 8, 1864, to Charles regarding the death of Frederick, with transmittal envelope postmarked from Vicksburg.

    Charles Hoadley retained copies of two letters written to Col. Frederick A. Starring of Natchez, Mississippi, on November 2, 1863, and February 17, 1864. In the first, Charles asks for help in obtaining his brother's "trunk &c at Vicksburg." In the next retained letter, Charles thanks the colonel for shipping "the remains of my brother's papers." Included is a shipping receipt from Parker's Express Company and the transmittal envelope from one of Col. Starring's letters, postmarked Vicksburg on January 25.

    A William P. Parks ten-page ALS to Dr. C. Watkins of New York, August 26, 1875, discussing Hoadley's service during the war. Parks, who served under Hoadley, relates an interesting story describing how Hoadley bravely stood up to a Union force under Col. Starring until he ran out of ammunition. Days later, Hoadley was dead. Parks also offers more details of Hoadley's death and funeral: "With him fell one of Arkansas' bravest. . . . There were many officers at his funeral some of high rank. His body was interred in the beautiful yard of Mrs. Wilson one of the most patriotic ladies of Mississippi." A postscript contains a lengthy quotation from Parks' diary dated June 9, 1863, regarding the death of Frederick. Parks also reports a dramatic later visit by Col. Starring to the graveside of Hoadley. The transmittal envelope is included.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2014
    7th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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