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    [J.E.B. Stuart] Original Graphite Drawing by Alexander S. Webb Presented to Stuart at the United States Military Academy at West Point, Circa 1853. This drawing, by Alexander Webb (Class of 1855), was given to his schoolmate and friend James Ewell Brown "Jeb" Stuart in 1853. The graphite drawing shows two young boys climbing trees with a stone building and tower in the background. It has a wash and light brushstrokes of varnish. The drawing, 15" x 11.25", is signed lower right "Alexd. S. Webb". Toned, minor foxing, chipping at edges, and light crazing to the wash, else, fine.

    Alexander Webb was a career military officer. After graduation from the United States Military Academy in 1855 he was brevetted as a Second Lieutenant in the 4th U.S. Artillery and sent to Florida. After serving in the Seminole War, Webb was given an appointment to serve as an instructor of mathematics at West Point. At the outbreak of the Civil War, Webb took part in the defense of Fort Pickens, Florida, and the First Battle of Bull Run. During the Peninsula Campaign, he served as assistant inspector general of artillery for the Army of the Potomac and received recognition for his assembling an impregnable line of artillery defense during the Battle of Malvern Hill. During the Maryland Campaign and the Battle of Antietam, Webb was promoted to lieutenant colonel. In January 1863 he was assigned to the V Corps. He was promoted to brigadier general on June 23, 1863 after the Battle of Chancellorsville. Three days before the Battle of Gettysburg Webb was given command of the 2nd Brigade, 2nd Division, II Corps. Webb's most memorable military service was at Gettysburg. His brigade was posted on Cemetery Ridge with the rest of the II Corps on the morning of July 2. The brigade repulsed the assault of a brigade of Georgians as it topped the ridge late in the afternoon, chasing the Confederates back as far as the Emmitsburg Road, where they captured about 300 men and reclaimed a Union battery. Webb sent two regiments to assist in counterattacking the assault of Confederates on Cemetery Hill. On July 3, Webb's brigade was in the center of the Union line to defend against Pickett's Charge. As the Confederates launched a massive artillery barrage to prepare for their infantry assault, Webb made was conspicuous to his men. He stood in front of the line and leaned on his sword, puffing leisurely on a cigar while cannonballs whistled by and shells exploded all around. Although his men shouted at him to take shelter, he refused and impressed many with his personal bravery. As Pickett's Virginia division approached to within a few yards, two companies of Webb's 71st Pennsylvania ran away. Webb, rallying his troops, strode directly in front of the chaos as the Confederates breached the low stone wall. Webb was wounded in his thigh and groin by a bullet, but kept going. With the help of two adjoining New York regiments, Webb and his men brought the Confederate assault to a standstill, inflicting heavy casualties. Webb was promoted to brevet major general of volunteers for his service that Gettysburg. He was later awarded the Medal of Honor for "distinguished personal gallantry in leading his men forward at a critical period in the contest" at Gettysburg on July 3, 1863.

    After Gettysburg, Webb received command of the division six weeks later and led it through the fall campaigns. At the Battle of Spotsylvania Court House, in May, he was hit by a bullet that passed through the corner of his right eye and came out his ear. He returned to the army, in January 1865, as chief of staff of the Army of the Potomac. He was promoted to brevet major general in the regular army on March 13, 1865. General Webb stayed with the Army until 1870. During his final year, he served again as an instructor at West Point. Webb died in 1911 after serving as president of the City College of New York. He is buried in West Point National Cemetery. Given by ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­ Alexander Webb to J. E. B. Stuart

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2010
    26th Saturday
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