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    [Civil War]. Two Manuscript Documents Relating to the 20th Corps Union Army March through the North Carolina. "General Orders, No, 8", issued by Major General Henry W. Slocum; two pages, 7.75" x 9.75", Headquarters Left Wing Army of Georgia, Averasboro [Averasborough], North Carolina; March 7, 1865. The order directs avoidance of wanton destruction of property or ill-treatment of residents in the state of North Carolina. It reads:

    "All officers and soldiers of this command are reminded that the State of North Carolina was one of the last states to pass the ordinance of secession and that from the commencement of the war there has been in this state a strong Union party. Her action on the question of secession was undoubtedly brought about by the traitorous acts of other states, and by intrigue and dishonesty and the part of a few of her own citizens. The act even never met the approval of the great mass of her people.

    It should not be assumed that the inhabitants are enemies to our Government, and it is to be hoped that every effort will be made to prevent and wanton destruction of property or any unkind treatment of citizens
    ."

    The order, issued under the command of General Slocum, is written in the hand and signed by Captain Robert P. Dechert, Acting Assistant Adjutant General under Slocum. The order is countersigned on March 9, 1865 by Charles Moyer, Acting Assistant Adjutant General, 20th Corps; W. F. Forbes, assistant adjutant general, and Colonel George W. Mindil, Commander of the 2nd Brigade.

    Together with a letter in a secretarial hand, signed by James L. Harding, Captain and Acting Assistant Inspector General, 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 20th Corps of the Army of Georgia, under the command of Major General Slocum, to Captain Michael Nolan, Acting Assistant Inspector General, 2nd Division, 20th Corps concerning the need of clothing for soldiers of the 2nd Brigade. Two pages (of a bifolium), 7.75" x 9.75", Headquarters, 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, 20th Corps [North Carolina]; March 20, 1865.

    Two interesting documents that provide a glimpse into the 20th Corps' role in General William T. Sherman's march through North Carolina.

    Condition: Both documents have the usual folds, and a small pin hole in the top margin. Even toning, and some staining and soiling on verso.




    More Information:

    Henry W. Slocum (1827-1894) was a major general in the U. S. Army during the Civil War. At the time this order was issued, Slocum was in command of the newly created Army of Georgia, comprised of 14th and 20th corps from the Army of the Cumberland, which served as the left wing in General William T. Sherman's army that march through Georgia and the Carolinas.  Slocum's order was in keeping with Sherman's strict rules concerning destruction of property in North Carolina.  

     

    Full transcript of the James L. Harding letter:

    Captain

                I have the honor to submit the following letter of advice. Since the 20th ult. the Brigade has been continually on the march through the States of South and North Carolina. This continued activity without a renewal of supplies begins to affect materially the comfort and appearance of the troops. Clothing of nearly every kind is much needed especially shoes stockings and trousers..All means have been taken to secure whatever provisions the country afforded.foraging parties have been organized and the utmost advantage taken of all mills on the route; large quantities of meat and corn have been thus secured. In addition to supplies thus obtained the following Govt. rations have been issued 9400 lbs. hard bread, 1075 lbs. coffee 130 lbs. sugar.

                Fodder has been abundant during the whole campaign and notwithstanding the severe labor which the animals have performed their condition is satisfactory.

                The health, physical condition and morale of the troops is good and they only need supplies of clothing to prepare them for a renewal of the campaign.

     



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