90

Civil War 85th New York Letter Illustrated with Detailed Map

4pp, 5 x 8 in. Three pages of letter and fourth page is hand-drawn map of the Union forces at Plymouth, NC. Letter dated from Plymouth, June 1863. Although difficult to read, the letter is signed G.D. Rogers. Rogers enlisted in Co. F, 85th NY Vols. in August 1861. The unit was mustered in at Elmira, NY in November. He mentions in the letter that the unit will probably see the next July 4th (1864) at home before mustering out at Elmira, where they mustered in. He also mentions Captain Allen. Seneca Allen was the captain of Co. F. Rogers, along with over 2,000 other Federals, was captured April 20, 1864 at Plymouth and sent to Andersonville. He only lasted until August before dying of disease (Grave 5791). Rogers is listed as being 35 years old at the time of his enlistment, so he didn't even have the advantage of youth in the horrible conditions at the prison camp.

His wonderful map shows the Roanoke River with gun boats on it, and Forts Wessell and Williams, which he notes were completed at the time of his letter, plus two smaller unfinished forts. Fort Wessell was apparently named for General Henry Wessells (1809-1889) (USMA 1833), in charge of this district (Albemare) of the Department of North Carolina. His headquarters were in the town of Plymouth, marked with a dot in a circle on Rogers' map. He has the location of the tents of each company of the 85th NY, and more general locations of the 96 NY, 24th NY Artillery, 103 PA, and 101 PA. He also marked rifle pits and targets, as well as geographic features such as woods and swamps. Apparently there was an unfinished "Rebel Schooner," which he has also drawn and located on the map.
Estimate: $300 - $500
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium
$940
06/11/2010

 

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