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Sale 38 Lot 284

CIVIL WAR CORRESPONDENCE OF CAPT. WILLIAM H. SANFORDAn excellent group of seven war-date letters of Capt.. William H. Sanford, of the 7th NC Infantry, from June 4, 1861 to Feb. 25, 1862, 24pp., all but one in ink, four with postal covers. Sanford served from December 24, 1861 until June 15, 1862, when he died from wounds sustained at the battle of Statesville, North Carolina. He initially sought to enlist in the CSA military six months earlier but was prevented due to a contract commitment he had with his employer. Writing to a friend at Greensboro, June 4, 1861, he explains his dilemma, in part: ".....the war would probably last a good while, and that I needn't fear but what I would have a plenty of chances to fight before it was over.....if disabled I will be at the mercy of the public, that is one side of the picture; the other is an army of invasion, my duty to assist in repelling it, pride of character...should I volunteer now or wait 3 or 6 months?...". In fact, he did enlist 3 months later, writing from Manassas, Sept. 18, 1861, in part: ".....I arrived here on Tuesday with much inconvenience.... my first thing is to see the quartermaster general....I have talked to William Falls...he is not willing to go into the company to which he has been transferred. His name was probably in nomination...for Captain....if he is not elected there, he will go into the arrangement spoken of by us...with Falls, Morrison, Hall and myself for officers...[Sept. 21/61] if the men can be gotten I doubt not we could soon have a well drilled soon as you are able do all you can to organize the company whilst the State is receiving volunteers....vacancies are filled here in companies - not by election or recommendation of the Captain but by seniority of company. For that reason I much prefer the volunteer service where a vacancy would be filled from the company...[Sept. 22/6, Camp Pickens]: after a little sickness is one of the great drawbacks to the recovery of the invalids. Sickness here now must recall from artificial causes, the principal one being want of ventilation of the tents...orders have been issued by Johnston upon that subject...[Dec. 6/61] I reached Carolina City the day before the regiment moved to this place which is about 8 miles from the old was forwarded...a recommendation to have me appointed Captain of Commissary.....the recommendation was approved by General soon as I hear from the department I will write you about the bond and negro both...[Feb. 11/62] Camp Graham...We don't know how soon General Burnside will give us a call - he has full sway in several of the wealthiest and most productive counties in the state....great distress is said to prevail. If you know anybody who will enlist, Captain McCauley is anxious to increase his company, the bounty is now about $65.00...[Feb. 25/62]Col. Heywood is in command of the 7th....our regiment will be moved in a few days, probably to Newborn. Should Col. C be promoted....Col. Heywood would make a first rate commanding officer....the general health of the regiment is good that I don't think a trip to Fort Warren would improve us. I suppose rheumatism is very prevalent at Statesville. I will state my candid opinion to you on 'the square'...I believe we are in a precarious condition down here, about 5000 men inefficiently officered, poorly drilled to resist 10 or 15,000 picked troops at a point where a combined land and gun boat attack may be made....half of the men of N. Carolina are acting as arrant cowards. Of course all that are needed cannot be armed....with the garden spot of the state in the hands of the invader, the principal railways in imminent danger, the very Capital itself in danger, that the state will wait for a draft to raise a few regiments. If we are cut off down here I really believe 10,000 good troops can march to Raleigh before a force can be organized to resist them. These remarks are made in confidence because if repeated would do more harm than good to me and the cause". Captain Sanford could never have known how correct his assessment of the situation really was. His death four months later was a direct result of the Confederacy's inability to reinforce the local regiments with competent leadership.
Estimate $ 400-500

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