June 20, 2013 08:00 PM EDT Cincinnati


17th Maine Officers, Four Identified CDVs, Plus

Five officers, including one in civilian dress and another unidentified. The first cdv is ink signed Jas. M. Brown/1st Lieut., 17th Me. Vols., no back mark. 2nd Lieut. James M. Brown, Co. A, was commissioned 8/62; KIA Orange Grove, VA (11/27/63). A second carte with Edwd I. Merrill/Capt. 17th Maine Vols. ink signed on verso, with Bundy & Williams, New Haven, CT. imprint. Captain Merrill, Co. G, joined 8/62; WIA Chancellorsville (5/3/63); discharged for wounds 12/63. Supposedly 1st Lieut.

A portrait of Geo. B. Dunn, Co. B, is identified in modern pencil with E. Crockett, Rockland back mark. He joined as 2nd Lieut. 8/62; promoted 1st Lieut., Co. G; promoted Captain, Co. K; WIA Sailors Creek (4/6/64); discharged 5/65. The civilian view is a mounted oval albumen, ink identified, Ellis M. Sawyer, 1861/ Capt. Co. E, 17th Maine Regt. Aug. 1862/Acting Major, Killed Nov 28th/1863 at Mine Run Virginia. Last is an armed officer by Trask & Lewis, Portland standing with folded arms, unidentified except for the numeral 17 within the kepi bugle.

17th Maine, 3rd Brigade, 1st Division, 3rd Corps

The 17th Maine was organized at Camp King, Cape Elizabeth in August 1862 and was initially assigned to Washington Defenses. The regiment served in the 3rd Corps beginning in October 1862 and was transferred to the 2nd Corps in March 1864. During its entire term of service with the Army of the Potomac, the 17th Maine bore a conspicuous role in every battle in which it participated, having suffered commensurately. At Fredericksburg the regiment endured punishing Confederate artillery fire, and while at Chancellorsville, the 17th was in the thick of the furious fighting that befell Sickles’ Corps on May 3rd, losing over 70 men.

At Gettysburg, the 17th Maine of de Trobriand’s brigade bore a prominent role in the defense of the Wheatfield on July 2nd before finding itself unsupported and outflanked by Kershaw’s onslaught. Ordered to withdraw, the remnants of the exhausted regiment held a thin line with the 5th Michigan for a tenuous 45 minutes before elements of the 2nd Corps came up in support. The two-hour fight had cost the intrepid regiment over 100 casualties, in exchange for immortality.

Far from fought-out, the 17th Maine joined in Grant’s Overland Campaign and was quickly gutted at the Wilderness and Spotsylvania. In a series of almost daily battles lasting over a month—from May 5 to June 7—the regiment lost 260 men before going into the trenches at Petersburg. The 17th Maine was engaged without respite until the very end of the war suffering 15 killed and wounded during the last major battle fought by the Army of the Potomac at Sailors Creek. After the satisfaction of witnessing the surrender of Lee’s army at Appomattox, the valiant regiment mustered out June 4, 1865, having sustained over 200 killed and wounded.

Provenance:The Tom MacDonald Maine Civil War CDV Collection

Condition:CDV of Brown soiled with clipped corners; Merrill carte trimmed at bottom, both still G. The other two CDVs VG.

Estimate: $300 - $400
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium


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