Sale 5001Completed: March 16, 2024

March Internet Auction

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Lots 429—432

Civil War Postal History

  • Lot 429

    Drum Barracks, California, cover bearing 3¢ rose (65) , faults, tied by "Geneva N.Y. Feb 19" cds duplex with grid cancel, additional "Due 3" handstamp to Soldier James A. Husband, Co. E. 2nd Reg. Infantry Cal. Vols, Drum Barracks, California, forwarded with " Wilmington Cal. Mar 28 " double-circle datestamp and "Due 6" handstamp to Rochester N.Y., red crayon " for 6 " rating, "Carrier, Apr 30" arrival backstamp; cover tear, F.-V.F. and unusual forwarded use searching for Civil War soldier.

    Estimate  ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦  $200 - 300.

    With the outbreak of the American Civil War in April 1861, there were concerns on the Union side about the loyalty and security of the Los Angeles area. Phineas Banning, the founder of Wilmington (then known as New San Pedro), wrote a letter to President Lincoln advising that the Union would lose California unless some provision were made to quell pro-Confederacy sentiment. Initially, the Union moved a garrison from Fort Tejon to Camp Latham near Culver City, California. Later in 1861, Banning and Benjamin Davis Wilson, the first mayor of Los Angeles, donated 60 acres (240,000 m2) in Wilmington to the government for one dollar each for use in the construction of a Union garrison. By January 1862, the military command had moved from Camp Latham to Camp Drum in Wilmington. By March 1862, all but one company of Camp Latham's troops had been moved to Camp Drum.[3] The camp was built between 1862 and 1863 at the cost of $1 million and consisted of 19 buildings located on 60 acres (240,000 m2) in Wilmington with another 37 acres (150,000 m2) near the harbor. By March 1864, official letters and papers referred to the encampment as Drum Barracks rather than Camp Drum.[3]

    Camp Drum and Drum Barracks get their name from Colonel Richard C. Drum, Assistant Adjutant General of the Army's Department of the Pacific, stationed in San Francisco. During the Civil War, Camp Drum was the headquarters of the District of Southern California and the home to the California Column, commanded by Colonel James Henry Carleton. Between 2,000 and 7,000 soldiers were stationed at Camp Drum, and Wilmington became a thriving community with a population greater than Los Angeles during the war.

    Realized: $600

  • Lot 430

    William Scott Ketchum, ALS letter signed " W. Scott Ketchum, Major 4" Inf ", datelined "New San Pedro Cal., 18" August 1861" to Lorenzo Thomas, Adjutant General U.S. Army in Washington D.C., entered mails with "Los Angeles, Cal. Aug 21" cds (LOS-5680) endorsed "Official Business", some interesting content from Ketchum " I am under orders for San Bernardino Cal. where I expect to be stationed with Co. A. D. F. and G 4th Inf. Cos. D & G arrived at this place this day on the Steamer Active and tomorrow or the next day I expect Companies A and F on the Brig Jessup. I came with the troops on the Active. I mention the letter of these companies… ", Very Fine and interesting letter documenting Civil War troop movements on the West Coast, ex-Tatham .

    Estimate  ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦  $200 - 300.

    William Scott Ketchum (1813-1871) was a U.S. Army officer before and during the American Civil War. He graduated from the United States Military Academy, at West Point, New York, in 1834. He served in the Seminole Wars and on the Western frontier. During the 1857 Cheyenne Expedition of Col. Edwin Vose Sumner against the Cheyenne and the Battle of Solomon's Fork, Captain Ketchum of G Company commanded the 6th Infantry Regiment detachment (of C, D and G Companies).

    At the start of the Civil War, Major Ketchum now with US Fourth Infantry Regiment commanded Fort Dalles in Oregon, protecting settlers from Indian raids. He was ordered to San Francisco and then sent to take command of the federal troops in Southern California to protect it from secessionist rising and Confederate invasion from Arizona or Texas. Headquartered in San Bernardino, California, his troops kept an eye on the secessionists of the region and reinforced Fort Yuma. Relieved by California Volunteer troops, Ketchum and his regiment assembled in San Pedro for the voyage to eastern United States in the late fall of 1861. Ketchum was promoted to lieutenant colonel in late 1861. He was made a brigadier general of Volunteers in February 1862. For the rest of the war he had staff duties in Washington, D.C., and was concerned with inspection, recruiting, and auditing.

    "Active" was a survey ship that served in the United States Coast Survey on the West Coast, a predecessor of the United States Coast and Geodetic Survey, from 1852 to 1861. She rushed troops to Los Angeles in the early stages of the war.

    Realized: $500

  • Lot 431

    Provost Marshal's Office, District St. Mary's, Point Lookout, Md., printed corner card on 1865 cover bearing 3¢ rose (65) canceled by four-rings duplexed with "Point Lookout Md. Feb 26 '65" cds to Alexandria Va., sharp " Advertised " straightline and "Mar 10 '65" dater, "Alexandria Va. Apr 8" backstamp, Very Fine.

    Estimate  ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦  $75 - 100.

    Realized: $120

  • Lot 432

    U.S.S. Metacomet, Western Gulf Squadron, cover bearing 3¢ rose (65) , straddle line s.e. tied by circle of wedges duplexed with "New York, Sep 12" cds on cover to Engineer on the U.S.S. Metacomet, Western Gulf Squadron, Mobile Ala., docketed "Sept. 12th 1864" at left, Very Fine.

    Estimate  ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦ ◦  $75 - 100.

    The second USS Metacomet was a wooden sidewheel steamer in the United States Navy during the American Civil War. The ship was named for Metacomet, a war chief of the Wampanoag Indians. She joined the West Gulf Blockading Squadron in the blockade of Mobile Bay.

    Realized: $65