"I Remain" - A Digital Archive of Letters, Manuscripts, and Ephemera
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  1. Leavitt, W.S. (William Solomon), 1822-1910.
    [Letter] 1865 December 5, Hudson, N.Y. [to] J.R. Bartlett / W.S. Leavitt
    Leavitt explains that he only has one copy of the sermon Bartlett wants, so he provides the full citation for the sermon instead. Leavitt also encloses another one of his sermons on the Civil War which was recently published. The recipient of the letter, John Russell Bartlett, was a bibliophile, ethnographer, politician, publisher, and librarian. His Literature of the Rebellion (1866) was the first bibliography of the Civil War. In the course of compiling this work, Bartlett reached out to a number of individuals for help in obtaining books and pamphlets relating to the conflict.
  2. Lee, Robert E. (Robert Edward), 1807-1870.
    [Letter] 1860 April 14, Fort Brown, Texas / R[obert E.] Lee.
    Lee writes that since his last letter reporting his arrival time was for his dear Annie, this letter will be for his "dear little Agnes in answer to hers." In response to reports of pain in her eyes, Lee counsels, "We must have a great deal of patience in this world, & a great deal of waiting upon events." Lee discusses his schedule, old friends from West Point, and urges the "young people" to complete their chores in the garden and take care of their mother in anticipation of her operation. Lee tells his daughter that he is surrounded by children, describing their games and their parents, as well as nearby churches of various denominations. Lee asks Agnes to tell Rob to "learn to write a good hand, or he will be ashamed to write to his sweetheart." Lee had seven children: George Washington Custis, Mary, William H. Fitzhugh, Agnes, Annie, Robert Edward, and Mildred. Agnes' diaries were later published as Growing up in the 1850s. After graduating from West Point at the top of his class, Lee's skills were recognized during the Mexican War (1846-48), when he captained Gen. Winfield Scott's staff. In 1859 he halted the insurrection led by John Brown at Harper's Ferry in the midst of growing tension between the North and South. He returned to his post in Texas where he wrote this letter; between December 1860 and February 1861, seven states seceded from the Union, including Texas. Though he was offered the command of the Union Army, he followed his native state of Virginia, eventually commanding the Army of Northern Virginia in important victories like the Second Battle of Bull Run, Fredericksburg, and Chancellorsville, as well as defeats like Gettysburg, Antietam, and ultimately Appomattox Court House where he surrendered April 9, 1865. Postwar he accepted a position as President of Washington College (later known as Washington and Lee University).
  3. Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.
    [Letter] 1864 May 23, Executive Mansion [to] Attorney General [Edward Bates] / A[braham]. Lincoln.
    Lincoln requests the Attorney General [Edward Bates] to grant a pardon to the bearer, William P. Grace for giving the facts for the recitals. The self-educated son of a Kentucky frontiersman, Lincoln served as a Captain in the Black Hawk War, worked as a lawyer, and served as a Representative from Illinois (1847-1849); the national reputation he won in debates with Stephen Douglas for the Senate seat in 1858 (which Douglas won) led to his election as the 16th President of the United States in 1860. He led the Union through the Civil War, giving the Gettysburg Address and signing the Emancipation Proclamation (1863) freeing the slaves; he was reelected in 1864 and assassinated in 1865 at Ford's Theater by John Wilkes Booth. The recipient of the letter, Edward Bates, served as Lincoln's Attorney General from March 1861 to September 1864; prior to assuming these duties, he served as a member of the State legislature and as a Representative from Missouri (1827-1829).
  4. Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865.
    [Letter] 1862 September 10 / A[braham]. Lincoln.
    Lincoln states that if another quartermaster is needed, Mr. David A. Smith is "amply recommended" and could be appointed. On the same sheet are warm endorsements from military men B.C. Christy and Benjamin F. Porter, both dated August 3, 1862. On the verso are recommendations from Leo Chandler, dated August 5, and General Stevens, dated August 4. The self-educated son of a Kentucky frontiersman, Lincoln served as a Captain in the Black Hawk War, worked as a lawyer, and served as a Representative from Illinois (1847-1849); the national reputation he won in debates with Stephen Douglas for the Senate seat in 1858 (which Douglas won) led to his election as the 16th President of the United States in 1860. He led the Union through the Civil War, giving the Gettysburg Address and signing the Emancipation Proclamation (1863) freeing the slaves; he was reelected in 1864 and assassinated in 1865 at Ford's Theater by John Wilkes Booth.
  5. McClellan, George Brinton, 1826-1885.
    [Handbill] 1862 September 27, Sharpsburg [to] A.G. Curtin, Pennsylvania / General Geo[rge].B. M'[c]Clellan.
    The handbill is a reprint of a personal letter from McClellan to Curtin thanking him for his "wise and energetic action in calling out the militia of Pennsylvania." McClellan began his military career as an engineer at West Point, served under General Scott in the Mexican War, taught at West Point, studied European warfare, and conducted surveying and exploration missions in the West, briefly serving as President of the Ohio and Mississippi Railroad before the Civil War. At the outbreak of war the governors of New York and Pennsylvania sought his service; en route to discuss the offer with Governor Curtin (PA), McClellan was offered a position as major-general by Governor Dennison of Ohio which he accepted in 1861. McClellan went on to become general of the Union armies, but after differences with the Washington administration, Lincoln (whose letters are represented in the collection) put McClellan in charge of the defenses of Washington; after Antietam, McClellan was removed from active command. In 1864 he ran unsuccessfully for the presidency, later becoming the Governor of New Jersey (1878-1881). He published his memoirs, McClellan's Own Story (1887) and was remembered as a formidable adversary by Lee (whose letters are also represented in the collection). Curtin, the subject of this handbill, served as Governor of Pennsylvania (1861-67), gaining key support for Lincoln in that state; he later served three terms in Congress (1880-1887) and was appointed minister to Russia by President Grant (whose letters are also in the collection).
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