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    Capt. Frederick Benteen: Fantastic Souvenir of the Great Chicago Fire Collected by Him. In 1871, General Philip Sheridan commanded the Military Division of the Missouri from his headquarters in Chicago. As if he didn't have enough on his plate out West that fall, Sheridan had to step up to help save the City of Chicago. On October 8 fire began sweeping through the city, and Sheridan in consultation with the mayor and civilian authorities declared martial law. As army troops and deputized civilians began fighting the fire, quelling looting, and restoring order, a resourceful 16-year-old boy printed dozens, perhaps hundreds, of these muslin patches with the word "P O L I C E." Pinned to jackets, they became the badge of authority.

    Together with the POLICE patch is an extraordinary handwritten telegram dictated on October 9 by General Sheridan to be sent to Secretary of War Belknap: "City of Chicago is almost utterly destroyed by fire. There is now reasonable hopes of arresting it. if the wind does not change. which is yet blowing up a gale. I have ordered on your authority Rations from St. Louis. . ."

    Even if they had not come from the personal collection of F. W. Benteen, these would make a fabulous pairing.
    From the Glenwood Swanson Collection.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2018
    9th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 788

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