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    (Samuel Colt): A Call For Arms After Harpers Ferry. Extraordinary letter written to gun manufacturer Samuel Colt of Hartford, CT. The letter, written by H. Richardson, Adjutant General of Richmond, Va., is dated January 26, 1860, approximately three months after John Brown's Raid on Harpers Ferry. In the letter Richardson is asking for arms from Colt, and reads "In the extraordinary call for arms of all descriptions growing out of the occurrences at Harpers Ferry in October last, the State is in want of some descriptions of arms for immediate use, that cannot be "procured as speedily as is necessary". The Legislature has made large appropriations both for pulling the Armory into operations and for the purchase of arms-both which measures are subject, however to some preliminary arrangements. A gentleman who I understood was connected with your establishment called on me not very long since, and in a brief conversation which was all I then had time for stated, that any portion of the arms which the Governor purchased of you, could be exchanged for such others as the State has most immediate need of. In that case we desire to exchange the revolving rifle muskets for Calvary Sabres & probably pistols & that immediately. Can you do this, & if so upon what terms? Favour me with a reply at you earliest convenience. Very truly yours, H. Richardson, A'Genl. Samuel Colt, Esq, Hartford, CT.". Samuel Colt was an inventor and industrialist who made his fortune in the gun business. Founder of the Colt Manufacturing Company, he revolutionized manufacturing by patenting firearms with interchangeable parts and creating an assembly line on which to make them. Colt firearms figured in many of the nation's wars, and at the start of the Civil War both the Union and the Confederacy purchased firearms from the Hartford businessman. It is said Brown's raid contributed to Lincoln's election in 1860, and Jefferson Davis "cited the attack as grounds for Southerners to leave the Union, even if it rushes us into a sea of blood". Seems Richmond was already of the mind set that war was on the horizon. Light edge wear, else find. An excellent content letter. The Eric C. Caren Collection.

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    February, 2020
    22nd-23rd Saturday-Sunday
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