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    Description

    [Siege of Boston]. Jeduthan Baldwin Autograph Letter Signed. One page, 6.5" x 8", Cambridge, [Massachusetts]. September 15, 1775. Writing to his daughter Baldwin reflects on the dangers of flying British projectiles during the siege of Boston. His brother Isaac led a company of men he had raised in Hillsborough, New Hampshire and was mortally wounded after a British bullet tore into his chest. Shaken, Baldwin remained dedicated to the cause; his resolve to fight remained strong as is evident in this letter. In part: "It gives me pleasure to hear that you are well & that you behave as becomes a young Miss. I hope you will be ambitious to excel in those things that are praise worthy. I should be glad to see you & all the rest of the family, but you must be content (as well as I) with my being absent whistle I can be of more service here than I could be at home. You must remember that I am here fighting for your Liberty & to prevent your being a Slave. Last week on Plow'd hill a Great as well as small bullet flew very nigh me, but blessed be god. I remain unhurt tho' others were kill'd & wounded by me. How soon I shall be engage in battle again is very uncertain. Pray God spair [sic] me to see you again with the rest of the family. When the war will be at an end is very uncertain. I hope you might behave as a dutiful child ought to towards your mother & give her all the help & comfort that you possibly can & not go away & leave her when she will be alone at any time...I am your affectionate father, Jeduth. Baldwin."

    Jeduthan Baldwin (1732-1788) was born in Woburn, Massachusetts and later settled in Brookfield. During the French-Indian War, in 1755, he led a company of men on the expeditions to Crown Point and Fort Ticonderoga. A true patriot, he served on a committee denouncing the King's taxation on tea in 1773; and in 1774 was a delegate of the provisional congress meeting at Concord and Cambridge. In June 1775, he helped throw up defenses on Bunker Hill and served in the battle; possibly witnessing the mortal wounding of his brother. He became a lieutenant colonel in the Massachusetts militia and was ordered to Canada in April 1776 as assistant engineer, thereafter, he was appointed colonel of engineers in the Continental Army. In this role he surveyed the lower Lake Champlain region near Fort Ticonderoga in hopes of building new fortifications.

    In 1777, he was given command of the newly created corps of artificers under General St. Clair's command. He was present at the battle of Saratoga and witnessed the surrender of Gen. Burgoyne's army. While in the army he associated with many of the army's notables including Israel Putnam, George Washington, Kosciuszko and Horatio Gates. He kept a journal of his military service in the French-Indian War and during the American Revolution. That journal was published in 1906 in the book entitled, The Revolutionary Journal of Col. Jeduthan Baldwin, 1775-1778, by Charles Glass & Co., Bangor, Maine. In the beginning of the twentieth century, his relatives petitioned the government to name a fort after their famous ancestor. As a result, Fort Baldwin in coastal Maine was named in his honor. Lots 49017 through 49023 in this auction are his letters home with first-hand accounts of the War.

    Condition: Paper loss and a tear at the left margin (affecting a single word), where the wax seal has been opened. With two additional bits of loss occurring a bit higher along same margin. Evenly toned, with a few darker spots; tightly trimmed along bottom.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2016
    5th Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 6
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 633

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