[HAWKINS' ZOUAVES]. HAWKINS, Rush C. (1831-1920). Archive of manuscript letters, documents, and books relating to the colonel of the 9th New York Infantry Regiment, comprising:

Vignetted bust portrait of Rush Hawkins in uniform. New York: J. Gurney & Son, [ca 1863] (minor soiling and discoloration, with wear to edges and corners). Signed "Yours faithfully. Rush C. Hawkins. Col. 9th N.Y. Vols. 1863" on verso. Gurney's imprint on mount recto and verso. -- Standing portrait of Rush Hawkins in full uniform including non-regulation double-breasted frock coat with braiding on sleeves and custom pleats, a kepi with embroidered infantry bugle insignia surrounding the number "9," sash, and sword belt. New York: J. Gurney & Son, n.d. (toning and minor spotting throughout). Gurney's imprint on verso. -- Together, 2 cartes de visite, 2 3/16 x 3 1/2 in., on cardstock mounts.

[With documents and autograph letters signed by Rush C. Hawkins:] 

Document signed ("Rush C. Hawkins"). New York, 7 June 1861. An ordnance list calling for 720 waist belts, cartridge boxes, bayonet scabbards and frogs, and 80 patent leather sliding sword frogs. 

Document signed ("Rush C. Hawkins"). New York, 8 June 1861. Ordnance list for "four brass drums, complete."

Autograph letter signed ("Rush C. Hawkins") to Erastus Corning, as United States Representative of New York. Washington D.C., 9 December 1861. 2 pages, 8vo, marked "Confidential." Hawkins writes to stress the ways that the government can support the army: "I find that there is but one sentiment arriving the volunteer officers here, about this un-millitary and un-necessary delay, all agree upon one point and that is that there is no military [sic] necessity for it. In my opinion the legislation of our country can do no better or more efficient service than by unanimously looking after the heads of the army which are now so omnipitant [sic] and all powerful."

Autograph letter signed ("Rush C. Hawkins") to John P. Hale, as United States Senator from New Hampshire while aboard the U.S.S. Washington D.C. Camp near Falmouth, VA, 8 December 1862. 3 pages, 8vo split at fold. A letter of recommendation for "W.H.D. Cochrane, a 1st Lt. in the 6th N.H. Vol, now in my command." Hawkins notes that Cochrane has been acting as quartermaster and that he is "exceedingly anxious" for Cochrane to be permanently in his command, noting that he "is one of the most efficient young men I have met in the service, intelligent, trustworthy, honorable, + honest, and well versed in all matters." Cochrane (ca 1838-1905) enlisted as a private on 22 April 1861, mustered into Co. H of the 1st New Hampshire Infantry on 4 May 1861, and mustered out on 9 August 1861 at Concord. He re-enlisted and was mustered into Co. E of the 10th New Hampshire (according to records) on 17 September 1862, promoted the next day to 1st lieutenant. This letter of recommendation was clearly persuasive as Cochrane was discharged for promotion on 27 February 1862, as a Captain in the US Volunteer's Quartermaster's Dept. He would receive promotion to major on 4 July 1864 and to lieut. colonel by brevet on 13 March 1865.  

Autograph letter signed ("Rush C. Hawkins"), as colonel, to Horatio Seymour, as Governor of New York. New York, 2 December 1863. 1 page, 4to, some fading, old creases. A letter of recommendation: "I take great pleasure in recommending to your attention Capt. Lawrence Leahey [sic], now of the 16th NY Cavalry formerly a Capt. in my regiment. Capt. L. is a most excellent brave officer who has served his country faithfully. I believe him well worthy of promotion." Lawrence Laehy enlisted on 3 May 1861 in New York as a 1st lieutenant, commissioned the next day into Co. H of Hawkins' Zouaves (9th NY). He was promoted to Captain on 15 March 1862 and mustered out on 20 May 1863 at the expiration of service. His cavalry service and later service record are unconfirmed. 

Autograph letter signed ("Rush C. Hawkins") to Captain Clark. New York, n.d. 1 page, 12mo, old folds. Hawkins writes to an admirer, "Victor Emmanuel once said he could never refuse an application for a decoration or a cigar. I am very glad to be able to announce, that in one respect, I resemble that generous monarch. I never could refuse an autograph when asked for the autograph's sake." With an additional note on facing page identifying Hawkins.  

Autograph letter signed ("Rush C. Hawkins") to Samuel Wilson. New York, n.d. 2 pages, 8vo, mounted. Hawkins writes about an apparent invitation to an unspecified organization. 

[With:] Franklin Before the Privy Council, White Hall Chapel, London, 1774, on Behalf of the Province of Massachusetts, to Advocate the Removal of Hutchinson and Oliver. Philadelphia: John M. Butler, 1860. 8vo. Frontispiece engraving. Publisher's original brown cloth gilt (chipping to spine). Provenance: Dexter A. Hawkins (bookplate and gift inscription). SIGNED AND INSCRIBED BY RUSH HAWKINS: "To D.A. Hawkins with compliments of Rush C. Hawkins New York April 1860." Dexter Hawkins (1825-1886) was Rush's cousin, son of his uncle Henry Hawkins (1788-1866). Presumed second edition. Howes F-317. -- Testimonial to Col. Rush c. Hawkins, Ninth Regiment N.Y.V., "Hawkins' Zouaves." New York: Latimer Brothers & Seymour, 1863. 8vo. Original wrappers (chipping, wrappers detached). -- MOWRIS, J.A. A history of the One Hundred and Seventeenth Regiment, N.Y. Volunteers, (Fourth Oneida). Hartford, CT: Case, Lockwood and Company, 1866. 8vo. Dedication. (Spotting.) Publisher's original brown cloth (spine sunned). Provenance: HAWKINS, Rush C. Autograph note signed to Darwin C. Pavey. New York, 29 November 1875. 1 page, 8vo, on Rush C. Hawkins letterhead, old creases. Hawkins remits payment for the book. -- The Library of General Rush C. Hawkins, of New York. New York: George A Leavitt and Co., 1887. 8vo. Half red leather with marbled boards, smooth spine gilt (scuffs at extremities and spine). -- HAWKINS, Rush C. Better Than Men. New York: J.W. Bouton, 1896. 8vo. Provenance: Francis P. Fretwell, Monfret Cynological Library (bookplate). -- HALL, Edward Hagaman. Hudson and Fulton. New York: The Hudson-Fulton Celebration Commission, 1909. 8vo. Original wrappers (toned, tape repair to spine, chip); custom leather-backed blue slipcase, spine gilt. Provenance: Rusch C. Hawkins (ownership inscription on front wrapper).  -- Together, 6 books in 6 volumes.

[Also with:] after BRADY, Mathew. BUTTRE, J.C., engraver. Rush C. Hawkins. New Ork: J.C. Buttre, n.d. Engraving. 8 1/16 x 10 7/16 in. -- Newspaper clipping reporting on Rush Hawkins presenting the Bedford Street church with a silk flag. N.p., n.d. 2 7/8 x 2 7/8 in. 

Rush C. Hawkins was a complex character of manifold experiences and interests, including those of the military variety. He enlisted in the 2nd United States Dragoons at the young age of 15, during the Mexican-American War. Upon returning from the battlefield, Hawkins studied and practiced law in New York City before helping to raise the 9th New York Volunteer Infantry as the Civil War began in earnest. He was appointed the regiment's colonel in May of 1861 and blazed an impressive trail through North Carolina as part of Butler's expedition to capture Fort Hatteras in 1861 and General Burnside's North Carolina Expedition including the Battles of Roanoke Island, New Bern, and South Mills in February, March, and April of 1862, respectively. On Roanoke Island, Hawkins also served as post commandant of the Freedmen's Colony established there, enforcing labor wages and provisions for "contrabands" seeking refuge on the island while his regiment occupied it after the battle.

A wound in the left arm at South Mills left Hawkins unable to return to the battlefield until just before the Battle of Fredericksburg where he commanded the 1st Brigade, 3rd Division, IX Corps. After mustering out with his old "Hawkins' Zouaves" on 20 May 1863, Hawkins continued his military service, eventually receiving a promotion to the rank of brevet brigadier general in the New York militia shortly after the war ended.

Hawkins' postwar life was filled with hobbies and interests far removed from the battlefield. He got involved in politics, serving as a member of the New York State Assembly, and became an avid collector of rare books and 19th-century American art, eventually accumulating 225 incunabula and an impressive collection of early and modern paintings. His marriage to wife Annmary Brown also forged an important connection between Hawkins and Brown University, where he and his wife are buried and his collections are curated to this day. 

Provenance:The Civil War Collection of Dennis C. Schurr




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