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Sale 38 Lot 137

An outstanding relic, the Civil War service trunk used by Capt. George T. Garrison, son of famed abolitionist William T. Garrison, during his service as an officer of the 55th Mass. Reg't, a colored regiment! The 31 1/2" x 19" x 18" trunk bears fancily-embossed leatherwork with "Geo. T. Garrison" in black lettering on either side, in relief. Within, the trunk is a work of art, bearing a tooled red leather pocket, ornate printed trim, other reinforced compartments, and a lift-out shelf. Within is a canvas satchel (quite torn), also bearing Garrison's name stenciled thereon. The trunk has one leather top strap present; side leather handles and the other top strap are detached but present. Overall very good condition. With the issuance of the Emancipation Proclamation on Jan. 1, 1863, the 54th and 55th Mass. (Colored) Regiments were raised. Norwood Hallowell, who commanded the new 55th (the sister unit of the famed 54th Mass.) offered his friend George Garrison a commission in the new regiment. Garrison, who had decided against enlisting at the war's outset, now felt the conflict had another purpose-the abolition of slavery. After a long talk with his famous father, the elder Garrison tried to talk his son out of enlisting, explaining that their family was dedicated to peace. Nevertheless, the younger Garrison accepted the commission in the new Black regiment, enlisting on June 7,1863 and rising through the ranks to captain. The 55th fought at Olustee, James Island, and Honey Hill. Garrison's greatest honor was leading the 55th Mass. into Charleston singing the John Brown song! Due to size and weight, additional shipping charges will apply.
Estimate $ 3,000-4,000

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