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Sale 38 Lot 307

ASSAULTING FORT STEDMAN AT PETERSBURG Fine content soldier's letter describing the desperate Confederate assault on the Union Fort Stedman at Petersburg, 4pp. 8vo., "Army Home", Mar. 27, 1865, in which Cpl. John A. Newcomer of Co. F, 208th Penn. Infantry writes a lady friend. In part: "...We have had a very hard fight...the Rebs surprised our pickets and captured a fort and one of our batteries, and came very near into our camp. Before we formed a line...marched a short distance and began firing. We fired a few vollies, then were ordered to lay down...then got up and advanced to the first line of fortifications. We then fired very heavy on the Rebs and drove them out of the second line of fortifications. We then made a gallant charge and recaptured the fort and the battery. So the day was ours, by hard fighting...It was fun to see the Johnnies run...The field was covered with them...Our regiment was the first to make the charge...We lost 35 enlisted men killed and wounded, and three officers. One of the officers has died since...Corp'l Shull...was shot through the heart, he died instantly. Serg't Smith was struck on the leg by a piece of shell. Corp'l Smith shot through the hand. Corp'l D. T. Ritter shot through the leg...Today the Rebs were shelling us but the boys got used to the shells on Saturday...I will make you a ring out of a screw of a Rebel shell...". Very good. Newcomer had returned to service only days earlier following an extended illness. The battle of Fort Stedman was fought on March 25, 1865. The Union Army fortification in the siege lines around Petersburg was attacked in a pre-dawn Confederate assault by troops led by Maj. Gen. John B. Gordon. The attack was the last serious attempt by Confederate troops to break the Siege of Petersburg.
Estimate $ 400-600

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