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Seven autograph letters, 1859-1864, good political and war and battle content, all written to John J. Barclay of Bedford, Pennsylvania, who would finish the war as a 1st Lieutenant; six by an aunt in Bedford, one by his comrade in the 11th Regiment, Pennsylvania Cavalry, 108th Volunteers. All but two (1859, 1860) discuss politics, the prospect of war or the war itself. The first six are from Aunt Hetty in Bedford. Most contain some personal news, John having recently moved to Ft. Dodge, Iowa. Letter (3) of Feb. 29, 1860, discusses the Republican National Convention (May 16-18), with a sentence or two on several men - "(Seward)....is the first man in the Nation but cannot be the nominee...", "Cameron...has been too much mixed up with different parties...", "Greeley has an excellent article (Feb 20) on the Convention Candidates", Bates (from Missouri)....the candidate who would clear us of the charge of 'Sectional Party'...I was much pleased to have him commended...as next to Seward and Chase." (4) Nov. 9, 1860 - "...the Republican triumph is complete and we may truly congratulate each other...the battle is won, yet I have not the least desire to exult over the broken ranks of the Democratic party. They have had many triumphs until the spoils of office have rendered them unfit to rule. We hear constant threats of disunion down South. A few weeks will decide the movements of the 'Fire-eaters'...(12 more lines on this topic). (5) April 16, 1861 - (the War broke out four days prior) Who could have imagined a year ago that this great 'peaceful, happy' country, with the best government on earth would now be rent by civil strife, yet the plotters of treason years ago were preparing the southern people for this crisis....great excitement permeated our community....Sumter had been attacked and surrendered....(about two more pages in this vein). (6) April 23, 1861 - four pages of war preparation activities and news received by telegraph. (7) Letter of Captain George S. Ringland, Barclay's colleague and friend, Oct 19, 1864 - at this time both men had fulfilled their enlistment obligations and been discharged, Barclay sooner than Ringland, since he had been wounded and spent the rest of his service in various Confederate prison camps. After some affectionate pleasantries: "That miserable, deceitful Jim Mahorn got up the idea of reporting all officers for selling horses....it did not become him to report others for what he had often done himself....Stetzel (George, Lt. Colonel) left the Regt. without a friend that I know of. The fight in which you was wounded completely demoralized him. He was never under fire after he left that field. He pretended he could not serve under Col. Spear but the secret was that he was at heart a consummate coward. After you were shot he came up to the Regt. bawling like a bull and told the men they had broke and had disgraced the Regt. I resented the insult and explained that we were all in confusion before the Rebs charged on us." Another couple of paragraphs of battle, including a charge at a Confederate battery. Ringland seemingly hadn't known whether Barclay had been killed, finding out later that he had been taken south to a prison camp. He writes of his immediate future, at a loss what to do next, he might spend the winter in Pittsburgh. "If I go west (to Ft. Dodge?) I want you out there to help me wake up the Nation." Four 7 1/2 x 9 1/2 inch pages. Barclay (1832-1908) was a lawyer in Ft. Dodge when the war broke out. With four others he raised a cavalry company which became Co. A of the 11th Penna. Cavalry. He was badly wounded in the left side, carrying the bullet for the rest of his life, in a battle near Reams Station, Virginia, on June 29, 1864, five officers being killed in the engagement. He was captured and spent time in prison but was released as a disabled man when his term expired and returned to Bedford, where he spent most of the remainder of his life, fathering five children, one of whom he named Hetty. Ringland (1834-1923) died and is buried in Ft. Dodge, Webster Co., Iowa. The Reams Station Battlefield is a part of the Petersburg National Battlefield, administered by the National Park Service. Seven letters, 25 pages, with one empty envelope addressed to Barclay in his aunt Hettys hand. Written in pencil at the top in another hand is the name "G.L. Cruikshank", who was a 1st Sergeant in the 11th Regiment, he also survived the War. All correspondence in Fine condition, the Ringland hand-writing rather difficult.
Title: Civil War Correspondence, Two Union Officers.
Item: 1.00 Item
Seller ID: [barclay,johnj.andgeorges.ringland]575sevenautog