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    Description

    [Whitfield's Legion]. Five War-dated Letters from B.F. Willeford, a private in Company I, Whitfield's Legion (also known as the 27th Texas Cavalry), to his wife, Mary. Five letters, total of 22 pages, most pages 5" x 7"; written from various camps and dated March 17 and July 28, 1862. Although he sends news of the war, he does not believe it to be reliable. In a letter dated March 17, 1862 he writes that "Price is wound[ed], McCulloch shot through the heart, McIntosh the same." Two weeks later, his news is more optimistic: "March 30, 1862... the Feds are on the retreat toward St. Louis. But Thompson has got in behind them and burnt Springfield Rolls and torn up a good deal of the rail road. Our Army is moving down towards Pakahuntis [Pocahontas, WV] our generals in command do not anticipate a fight very soon. The Yanks were so badly whipped in the last fight that it was not thought they will try again soon though there is no telling when nor where..." His June 20 letter relays news that France and England have "acknowledged our independence" and goes on to compare his hardships with that of the slaves: "The negroes there may think they see a hard time there but they see nothing. They are runing [sic] away from the North all the time. But as I was going to say the negroes there see an easier time than we do because they get plenty to eat and can go shout of Sundays and Nights, but we poor rascals cannot get out of camp without a pass..." Willeford died from a wound suffered in the battle of Iuka in October 1862. A letter to his wife dated May 3, 1864, makes mentions of the loss of her husband.

    Together with two letters to Mary Willeford from her brother, James H. Skinner, who first served in the 11th Texas Cavalry under Ben McCulloch, and then served with his brother-in-law in Whitfield's Legion. Skinner's first letter is dated November 2, 1861; writing from camp in the Cherokee Nation, Arkansas, he sends worth that they have just received orders "to march in quick order to his [McCulloch] camp as it was thought that our regiment would be needed forthwith." His second letter is dated September 4, 1863, "in Camp near Vernon, Miss." In part: "I am inside of the Yankee line so they say at last we will dispute there rite in this state. Times are extreamly [sic] gloomy at present... I am sorry to inform you that we have some men in our Brigade who claim Texas as there Homes, who have left their Regiments lately withought [sic] proper authority..."

    The last letter in the group is a letter from Skinner to his brother-in-law dated January 8, 1862 sending congratulations on the birth of his son.

    Condition: Condition varies, with all having toning. Skinner's January 8 letter has paper loss affecting, mainly to the integral page, but affecting 6 words. Transmittal covers present for several of the letters.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    March, 2016
    12th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 580

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