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    Description

    Spectacular Archive and Personal Effects of Libby Prison Inmate: 2nd Lieutenant Charles H. Burd, Co. "F", 4th Maine Volunteers. The unfortunate Lt. Burd had been in the Union Army just over a month when he was shot in the head and captured at First Bull Run on July 21, 1861. Political intervention on his behalf - and an unhealing wound - brought about his exchange some nine months later. Offered here is correspondence pertaining to Burd's incarceration, release and recovery plus several images of key players in the drama and various of his personal items from the war. Included are the following:
    - Partially Printed Telegram from an N. S. Nickerson, one page, Belfast, Maine, August 14, 1861 informing Samuel S. Burd (Lt. Burd's father) that "I just heard Lieut Burd is alive in Richmond." Fine condition.
    - Autograph Letter Signed, "H. Hamlin", one page, 4.5" x 7", Washington, D.C., December 16, 1861, to a J W Morrison (?). The Vice-President writes, "Your favor of the 12th is received. I will promptly call the attention of the Secy of War to the case of Lieut Burd, and urge your request," Very fine condition.
    - Autograph Letter Draft Signed, "Charles H Burd ," two pages, 7.75" x 9.75", Richmond, Virginia, December 30, 1861 to "James". It reads in part: "...rest assured that I shall meet whatever befalls me like a man. I am rapidly recovering my usual health and spirits, although my wound has not healed...There are no officers of my rank gone yet and I think I may be the first to go...If there are no more sent from the North to exchange for us, you had better send me fifty dollars in gold...I am most anxious to return but cannot play sycophant here to curry favor as some do...". Some words, including the recipient's name are crossed out. Surely a draft. A few stains, folds. Very good condition.
    - Letter Signed, "L. Thomas", two pages, 7.75"" x 10", Washington, D.C., January 21, 1862, to Vice-President Hannibal Hamlin, Washington, D.C. The Adjutant General here signs a secretarial letter discussing an exchange for Lt. Burd. Very fine condition.
    - Autograph Letter Signed, "J. W. Brown", one page, 7.5" x 9.5", Fort Monroe, Virginia, February 27, 1862, to "Ned" (likely Burd's brother). It reads in part: "...Two of the most skilled surgeons in the U. S. removed the balance of the ball, which had passed thro' both tables of the brain. It was knitted to the bone...He is now walking the room while I write and from all appearances needs only quiet and care to be all right...". Small split and crease, else fine condition.
    - Autograph Letter Signed, "J. W. Brown", two pages, 7.5" x 9.5", Boston, Massachusetts, March 5, 1862, to "Ned". It reads in part, "...I left Chas in good health and first rate spirits...I brought home the bullet taken from his head at Ft Monroe & also have the piece taken out by Dr Banks on the field. They make quite a lump of lead...The surgeon who had large practice in the Florida and Mexican wars said he never saw so narrow an escape...". A few minor stains, else very fine condition.
    - Partially Printed Document signed, "Edwin M Stanton", one page, 8" x 10", Washington, D. C. October 9, 1863, to Charles Burd. This official form letter from the Secretary of War appoints Charles Burd a 2nd Lieutenant in the Invalid Corps and requests that he report for duty. Fine condition.
    - Six additional letters and documents pertaining to Burd's wartime experience are included.
    - Three carte de visites carrying a Seaver & Lothrop, Boston backmark. A uniformed Burd is shown in two images, one being a full-length portrait and the other a bust. The third CDV has the subject wearing civilian clothes and is of extreme interest in that Burd's forehead is bandaged following the extraction of a bullet fragment. Marginal damp stains on all three images. Good condition.
    - Albumen Photograph of Libby Prison, 9" x 7.25" on 12.25" x 9" mat, probably an early post-war image. Inscribed period identification in lower margin. Fine condition.
    - Carte de Visite of Adjutant General Lorenzo Thomas, stamped by Barr & Young (U. S. Army photographers) on lower margin, inscribed period identification on image. Moderate foxing, good condition.
    - Carte de Visite of Vice-President Hannibal Hamlin with Brady backmark and studio logo in negative. Good condition.
    - Two Cased 1/6 Plate Ambrotypes, both of same gentlemen, identified in back of one case as C R Thornly. His significance to Burd is unknown at this time. Fine condition.
    - Officer's Sash, approximately 100" long, cloth now purple, with gold bullion sword hilt cord with knot, 16" long. Some light mothing to sash fabric.
    - Hinged Leather Case, 3.5" long, interior with four velvet-lined compartments. These contain two prisoner art bone cufflinks, one carved with a red cross and the other having a red heart, plus the two halves of the bullet extracted from Lt. Burd's brain.
    - Bone POW Spoon, 8" long. This splendid memento of the notorious Libby Prison is intact with a glossy naturally aged patina.
    - Hinged German Silver Case, 4.75" long, contains spectacles, the lid engraved "Saml. S. Burd". One lens loose from frame, wear to case.
    - Hinged Tin Pill Box, 2.5" long. Light rusting.
    - Black Oilskin Pouch, 6" x 4". Light crazing, yet still supple.
    - Leather Change Purse, 4" x .5". Crazing with some dryness.
    - Hinged Case, 7" long, contains two straight razors with bone handles.


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    November, 2008
    20th-21st Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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