Monday, April 30, 2018

Emancipation Proclamation, 13th Amendment Sell for $4.17 Million.

May 26, 2016, ABC News   A telephone bidder bought one of the 48 "Authorized Edition" Emancipation Proclamation copies signed by Lincoln that sold at the Great Central Fair fundraiser for the United States Sanitation Commission that sold for $10 at the fair back in 1864.

The copy of the 13th Amendment sold for $2.4 million and is one of just 14 signed by Lincoln on February 1, 1865.  It is also one of three of the "Senate Copies."  These are also signed by the vice president and 36 senators.

The 13th Amendment was ratified in December 1865.

There are just 27 known copies of the original 48 existing.

The Emancipation Proclamation also led to liberated slaves being able to serve in the Union Army and Navy.

Not a Bad Investment and a Whole Lot of History.  --Old Secesh

Saturday, April 28, 2018

Emancipation Proclamation Copy Signed By Lincoln At Auction-- Part 2

Continued from April 23, 2018.

This is one of the copies sold at the Great Central Fair in 1864 in Philadelphia.  The original Emancipation Proclamation is in the National Archives.  Several other of the Great Central Fair copies exist.

These copies are known as the "Authorized Edition" of the Emancipation Proclamation and are signed by Lincoln and Secretary of State William Seward.  The authorized edition was as close to the original as it could get and made for use as a fundraising item.

Entrepreneurs Charles Leland and George Boker came up with the idea.  They had 498copies made for the Great Central Fair in Philadelphia in 1864.

--Old Secesh

Emancipation Proclamation Signed By Lincoln At Auction-- Part 3

Abraham Lincoln was a big supporter of the United States Sanitary Commission for whom the Great Central Fair was raising money and had previously donated a n autographed item.  Leland and Boker had corresponded with Lincoln's private secretary John Nicolay for an authorized version of the Emancipation Proclamation.

Both were fervent abolitionists.

The "Authorized Edition" of 48 copies also had Nicolay's signature.  The original only had Lincoln and Seward sign it.

Imagine Making $2 Million for a $10 Investment?  --Old Secesh

Friday, April 27, 2018

MCCWRT Discussion Group Meets Saturday

The McHenry County Civil War Round Table will meet Saturday, April 28 at Panera Bread in Crystal Lake, Illinois.  It is located at 6000 Northwest Highway (near Main Street).

This month's topic is Railroads and Supply During the Civil War.

I plan on talking about the Wilmington and Weldon Railroad which ran through North Carolina and was an important supply line for military items brought through the blockade at Wilmington and Richmond.

Time is from 10 a.m. to noon.

--Old Secesh

Henry Beard, One of First Blacks (and Union Veteran) in Sycamore-- Part 2

Continued from April 10, 2018.

Henry Beard was a member of the 105th Illinois Infantry Regiment.

He settled north of Sycamore, Illinois, in an area called the "North Woods" where he purchased five acres from local abolitionist David West. Later, he married Julia (Judy) Jones.  They built a 2-room home and raised 14 children.

Unable to read or write, he wanted his children to get an education so he sent their sons to the only school in the area, a one-room North Grove School where the boys learned to speak Swedish because most of the people in the area were Swedish and had built the school.

The children had to learn to speak Swedish in order to understand the teacher who only spoke Swedish.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Black Group Disrupts Confederate Service in Chicago-- Part 2

Oak Woods Cemetery is at 67th and Cottage Grove streets in Chicago.  It was established in 1853.

Famous Blacks former Mayor Harold Washington and Olympian Jesse Owens are both buried there.  Other famous black people buried there are Thomas A. Dorsey (Father of Gospel Music) and Eunice and John H. Johnson, entrepreneurs.

The Confederate Mound, as the site in the cemetery is called, is the final resting place of some 4,000 victims of the Union prison called Camp Douglas who were buried there.  The prison camp was located in Bronzeville on the grounds of Stephen Douglas' land.

It features a 30 foot tall granite column with a Confederate soldier on top.  bronze plaques around the base list the names of 4,000 Confederates who died there.

It sits on federally-owned land run by the Veterans Administration.

It is Sad When a Group Does Not Pay Respect to American Veterans.  --Old Secesh

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Black Group Disrupts Confederate Memorial Service in Chicago-- Part 1

From the April 23, 2018, Chicago Sun Rimes  "Confederate memorial on South Side sparks protest" Mitch Dudek.

A Sons of Confederate Veterans memorial service at a mass grave of thousands of Confederate soldiers who died in a Chicago prison during the war was disrupted Saturday when 50 mostly-black protesters showed up to mark the nearby grave of Civil Rights activist and journalist Ida B. Wells. They used loudspeakers to drown out the Confederate service claiming that the service just was more white supremacists.

The SCV Camp Douglas (Camp 516) group, so named for the Chicago prison (sometimes called the North's Andersonville) in which anywhere between 4,500 and 6,000 Confederates died under unbelievably harsh conditions, has held memorial observations at the site for almost twenty years and the other group had never shown up in that time.

Seems like quite a coincidence, especially since neither Ida B. Wells' birth or death were on April 22.    Someone was just wanting to provoke a confrontation.

Coincidence, I Think Not.  --Old Secesh

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Burlington, Wisconsin, in the Civil War

From the April 2018 Spirit of Geneva Lakes  "Historic Downtown Burlington."

Located in southeast Wisconsin near the Illinois border.  First settlers arrived in mid to late 1830s seeking fertile farmlands and water power for mills at the junction of the White and Fox rivers.

A grist mill supplied flour locally as well as to Milwaukee, Kenosha and Racine.

A woolen mill made the first roll of cloth produced in Wisconsin.  During the Civil War is supplied cloth for Union soldier uniforms.

Wheat was the leading farm product through the Civil War but much effort turned to livestock and dairying after that.

--Old Secesh

Civil War II --615: Finally, a Politician With Backbone

From the April 23, 2018, Google Alerts for Confederate.

**  Republican aims to protect Confederate symbols from removal.  (Texas)  (Win)  State Representative Pat Fallon.  Finally, a politician with a backbone, not afraid to stand up to these attacks.  Maybe I will move to Texas so I can vote for him.

**  What I learned from my fight to remove Confederate memorials.  (n)ew (o)rleans mayor (l)andrieux)

**  Fate of Robert E. Lee statue doesn't include Cleburne.  Cleburne was also a Confederate general.

--Old Secesh

Monday, April 23, 2018

Civil War II-- 614: Dumb Professors, Dumber Mayor

From the March 25, 2018, Google Alerts for Confederate.

**  UNC profs threaten to destroy Confederate monument unless its is taken down.  They want to stay anonymous but don't fear getting arrested for doing it.  These were described as senior professors.  Sure setting a terrible example.    I'd sure fire them if they went through with the threat and definitely do something about making such an absurd threat.

**  The mayor of (n)ew (o)rleans, (m)itch (l)andriex has written a book about why he took down the statues  "In the Shadow of Statues."    One I definitely wouldn't buy.  Still hoping he decides to make a run at a national office because of the statues.  Someone I would definitely work against.

--Old Secesh

Emancipation Proclamation Copy Signed By Lincoln At Auction-- Part 1: Estimated Price, $2 Million

While writing about those 48 Lincoln signed copies of the Emancipation Proclamation that were sold at the Great central Fair in Philadelphia in June 1864, I got to wondering how many are still around and how much they would be worth.

What started off earlier this month as mention of Meade's spurs and Semmes' sword at the Rock Island Auctions, this has really grown into quite a project.

From the June 25, 2012, History Site  "Emancipation Proclamation Copy Signed By Lincoln For Sale" by Eliza Hanes.

On June 26, one lucky bidder can expect to pay around $2 million to own it.

I Don't have $2 Million Lying Around.  --Old Secesh

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Logan Circle (Square) in Philadelphia

From Wikipedia.

Logan Circle is also known as Logan Square.  The circle aspect of it is entirely within the boundaries of the old square.  Logan Square is where the Great Central Fair was held in 1864, which I have been writing about.

It was originally known as Northwest Square in William Penn's 1684 plans for the city.  It was renamed in 1825 after Philadelphia's James Logan (1684-1751), the 14th mayor, Chief Justice of Pennsylvania, lieutenant governor and acting governor.  He was an avid collector of books, eventually amassing 3,000 of them, which he described as "my disease."

During the American Revolution it was essentially a forest.  Over the next 25 years it served as a pasture, cemetery and execution ground.  In 1823, it was the site of the hanging of William Gross, the last person publicly executed in the city.

--Old Secesh

Friday, April 20, 2018

The Great Central Fair, 1864-- Part 4: 250,000 and $1.046,000

The Union League of Philadelphia proposed it.  Its Heritage Center has one of the 48 personally signed by Lincoln Emancipation Proclamations.  It was the Union league which arranged for the 48 signed copies to be sold at the fair.

A total of 250,000 visitors came and it was the second most profitable of all the Sanitary Commission fairs held.  The Sanitary Commission cleared $1,046,000 from it.

One reason so much money was made was because of all the volunteer help provided by the women of Philadelphia.

--Old Secesh

The Great Central Fair, 1864-- Part 3: Not the First Fair, Though

From the Hidden City Philadelphia site.

The official name was the Great Sanitary Fair.  It was also called the Great Central Fair.  Its object was to raise money to buy Union troops food, medical supplies, hospital ships and rest homes.  In effect, it served as a dress rehearsal for Philadelphia's Centennial Exposition of 1876.

It covered Logan Square (now called Logan Circle).  The main building of the fair extended the length of the square.  It was encompassed by smaller structures all of which were connected by corridors.

It was not, however, the first fair for the U.S. Sanitary Commission.  The first was held in Lowell, Massachusetts a year earlier.  It was a modest success and the idea spread to other cities.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, April 19, 2018

The Great Central Fair, 1864-- Part 2: A Little Bit of Everything Inside

Union Street was compared to a great cathedral by Charles J. Stille.  Inside it were departments from which to select items to buy.  They each had different themes.  Some of them:  the  neighboring states of New Jersey and Delaware, corn, sewing, restaurants, weaponry, fine art, curiosities, transportation and children.

On June 16, Abraham Lincoln and his family visited and donated 48 copies of the Emancipation Proclamation that he had signed.  They fair was asking $10 for each one.

The fair netted some $1 million for the Union's military.

A painting of the fair accompanied the article and it was quite impressive.

--Old secesh

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

The Great Central Fair of Philadelphia, 1864-- Part 1: A huge Fundraiser for U.S. Sanitary Commission

From  Wikipedia.

The fair took place in June 1864 and was a fundraiser for the United States Sanitary Commission.

Logan Square (now often called Logan Circle) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, was the site from June 7-28.  It was inspired by numerous other fundraising fairs that took place across the Union.

The main exhibit was located in a 200,000 square foot hall.  There were numerous smaller structures also.  The whole thing was designed by Samuel Honeyman Kneass and William Strickland.    There was also a Union Street that stretched for 540 feet and ran through the middle of the fair.

--Old SeceshFair

Another Pair of Gen. Meade's Spurs

From the James D. Julia Auction site.

Steel spurs belonging to Gen. George Gordon Meade.    Leather strap and fine coddeburr spurs.

Nicely framed, matted and silhouetted in contemporary gold frame.

Spurs and other items, supposedly from the Meade family estate.

Lot #420   Price $4,427

A Bit More Reasonable.  Old Secesh

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

About Gen. Meade's Spurs-- Part 5: J.E.B. Stuart's Spurs

The set of presentation spurs are accompanied by a large 20 X 16, war time albumen print of Meade and his staff.

The only other high grade collectible spurs known of the Civil War known are gold plated ones identified with J.E.B. Stuart which sold at auction in December 2006 for $119,500.00.

The silver on Meade's spurs have oxidized to brilliant hues of blue, powder blue and gray and retain much of the original polish.  The leather straps show age and fragility.

--Old Secesh

About Gen. Meade's Spurs-- Part 4: From the Estate of George Gordon Meade Easby

The spurs going up at auction belonged to George Gordon Meade Easby, the general's grandson.  He was a major art and antique collector, who inherited more than 100,000 antiques and personal items which had been in his family for centuries.

These items included items of the Meades as well as utensils used by the Founding Fathers during the signing of the Declaration of Independence.  Many of those items have been on loan at times to the White House.

--Old Secesh

Monday, April 16, 2018

About Gen. Meade's Spurs-- Part 3: Spurs and a Pistol

The Great Central Fair raised $1 million for the United States Sanitary Commission.

Many of General Meade's personal items have been donated or sold by family members in the 1990s, including the sword, uniforms, a cased and engraved Remington New-Model Revolver (now at the Autry Museum) and other artifacts.

I'll be writing about the pistol later this week as well.  The auction story has definitely branched out.

The spurs were in the estate of the late George Gordon Meade Easby (Meade's grandson) until a few years ago.

--Old SecSpur

About Gen. Meade's Spurs-- Part 2: The Great Central Fair and Abraham Lincoln

General George Meade and his wife were members of the Great Central Fair.  At the end of it, he was presented with a sword which is now at the Philadelphia History Museum.  The Great Central Fair was probably the greatest purely civic act of voluntary benevolence ever attempted in Philadelphia.

On June 16, President Lincoln and his son Todd attended the fair and he donated 48 copies of the Emancipation Proclamation which sold for $10 apiece.  What would an autographed copy of this signed by Lincoln himself be worth today?  Or imagine if instead he had autographed copies of his Gettysburg Address?

I will write more about these copies of the Emancipation Proclamation later this week.

--Old SeceshFair

Friday, April 13, 2018

About General Meade's Spurs-- Part 1: Presented By the Great Central Fair to the General

From the Rock island Auction Site.

Lot 1123--  Officer eagle Head Spurs Inscribed to Major General George Meade.

This has never been offered to the public before.  It is one of two known sets of solid silver head spurs known.

The inscription reads:

"Major General  George G. Meade /  FROM THE / Great Central Fair / Philadelphia 1864."

General Meade had the nickname "Old Snapping Turtle."

This was presented to him on June 4, 1864.  The Central Fair took place June 7 to June 28, 1864 and was a fundraiser for the U.S. Sanitary Commission.

--Old Secesh

Thursday, April 12, 2018

Confederate General Paul J. Semmes' Sword at Auction This Weekend

From the Rock island Auction Company ad in the April 8, 2019, Chicago Tribune.

"The most historic Confederate weapon we have ever had the pleasure to catalog."  Norman Flayderman, Catalog #109.

Lot 1108\\Incredibly important, Fresh and Well-Documented Ames inscribed officer's presentation sword and scabbard.

Presented to Confederate General Paul J. Semmes, mortally wounded at the Battle of Gettysburg.  A picture of the general accompanies the ad.

Pre-Auction estimate:  $100,000-300,000.

Sure, I've Got That Much Just Lying Around the House.  --Old SeceshCheap

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

General Meade's Spurs At Auction

Rock Island Auction Company Auction April 13-15, 2018.  In the April 8, 2018, Chicago Tribune.

Among the items up for auction is a pair of Major General George Gordon Meade's spurs.

Lot 1123

"Extremely Rare, Historic, Fully Documented and Excellent Condition Presentation Officer's Spurs of Major General George Gordon Meade.

Pre-Auction Estimate $25,000-50,000.

Well, I Don't Know What the Wife Would Say.  --Old Secesh

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

North Grove School in Sycamore and Fairview Cemetery in DeKalb


Built in 1878 by Swedish immigrants for $230.  They will be having a School Days Open House in June 2018, which  we hope to attend.

This is where the children of Henry and Judy Beard attended school.


1600 S. First Street

This is where Henry and Judy Beard are buried.

Other notables in DeKalb history buried there are Jacob and Sarah Haisch, Ben Gordon, Joseph Glidden (invented barb wire), Annie Glidden and there is a mausoleum for the Elwood family.  10,000 buried there, including a Civil War veteran and the very first Boy Scout in America who died at age 12.

--Old Secesh

Civil War Trust April 2018 Calendar: Perryville, Kentucky

PERRYVILLE KY.  1,027 acres saved.

Picture of a field with a hill in the background.

Over  the pat two decades, the Trust has protected some 1,027 acres of hallowed ground at Perryville, site of the decisive October 8, 1862, battle that ensured Union control of Kentucky for the remainder of the war.

Our efforts have helped to save more than half the acreage included in Perryfield Battlefield State Historic Site, Kentucky's largest battlefield.

--Old Secesh

Monday, April 9, 2018

MCCWRT Meeting Tuesday April 10:

This Tuesday, April 10, the McHenry County Civil War Round Table will meet at the Woodstock, Illinois, Public Library at 414 W. Judd Street from 7 to 9 p.m..

Robert Girardi will talk about "The Organization of the Rank and File: Soldiers and Their Officers."

--Old Secesh

About Those Gold Bars in Pennsylvania

Last month, March 28, I wrote about people looking for buried gold bars in Pennsylvania while the FBI keeps an eye on them.  Some more information:

It is thought to be between 26 to 52 gold bars, worth between $27 million and $55 million today.

They are believed to be buried at Dents Run, about 135 miles northeast of Pittsburgh.  They were en route from Wheeling, West Virginia to the U.S. Mint in Philadelphia.  It was lost around the time of the Battle of Gettysburg.

But, historians are skeptical of the story.  Most believe it to be just a 155-year-old legend.

--Old SecGold

Friday, April 6, 2018

135th USCT's Re-enactment in Goldsboro This Weekend-- Part 5

Since their regiment number was so high, they were probably one of the last USCT regiments mustered in.  Plus, since it had members from Georgia and South Carolina, I imagine many of those men had been following Sherman's army.

After Confederate General Johnston surrendered to Sherman at Bennett Place in Durham in late April, the 135th was one of the few black regiments to take part in the march in review along Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, D.C. in front of the U.S. president.  (I had always thought that no USCT regiments were allowed to be in that march.)

After the war, the 135th was used to guard bridges and hospitals in Kentucky.

A partial list of the members of the 135th has been compiled.

--Old Secesh

135th USCT Re-Enactment Goldsboro-- Part 4: Mustered Into Service in Goldsboro in 1865

Then General  Sherman stayed in Scotland County, North Carolina, on the March through the Carolinas.  Scotland County is on the S.C. border and where Laurinburg is located.  While there, they used the Old Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church for headquarters (built 1856).

Then they went to Fayetteville where they destroyed the arsenal and then to the Battle of Bentonville March 19-21.  After the Union victory at Bentonville, Sherman continued on to Goldsboro.  There his troops were supplied.

The 135th was created when over 1,100 black men enlisted after Sherman arrived in Goldsboro, which is why  the 135th's re-enactment is taking place there.  Between late March and early April, the 135th trained and were issued uniforms and equipment.

USCT regiments acted as the U.S. Navy Seabees do, they created roads by felling trees and covering them with soil and built bridges.

I's Sure Like to be in Goldsboro for this event this weekend.  --Old Secesh

Thursday, April 5, 2018

135th USCT Re-Enactment in Goldsboro, N.C. This Weekend-- Part 3

Saturday there will be a symposium with several scholars speaking about the USCT from 9 to 3 p.m..

The 135th USCT

Many of the USCT regiments were made up of black men from the same county or area of a state.  There were 1,154 men in the 135th USCT from the states of Georgia, South Carolina and North Carolina.   Some of them from North Carolina came from Laurinburg, Maxton, Red Springs, Lumberton.  There were also some from Bennettsville, South Carolina.

They joined Sherman after his March to the Sea and were on the March Through the Carolinas.  They were mustered into Union service along the way.  I came across enlistment records which showed many mustered in at Goldsboro, N.C., which made it a good place to have the re-enactment.

--Old Secesh

135th USCT Re-Enactment in Goldsboro, N,C, This Weekend-- Part 2

The weekend is called "135th USCT Living History Weekend:  The Last Troop" and will be April 6-8 in downtown Goldsboro on Center Street.  There will be a pop up museum, exhibits on the war, re-enactors and encampments by the 135th, 35th and 37th USCTs.  The 37th USCT was at Fort Fisher.

There will also be an artillery battery from Fort Fisher which will hold cannon-firing demonstrations.  Also on hand will be photographers taking tintypes.  A medical tent will show how Civil War amputations and wounds were cared for.

A representative of the African-American Civil War Museum and Foundation in Washington, D.C. on hand to enroll family members into the Sons and Daughters of the USCT.

I'd sure like to be there.

--Old Secesh

Wednesday, April 4, 2018

135th USCT Re-Enactment in Goldsboro, N.C. This Weekend-- Part 1

From the March 19, 2018, Laurinburg (NC) Exchange  "Civil War soldier descendants sought" Beth Lawrence.

A group of genealogists and historians are seeking descendants of the 135th USCT (United States Colored Troops) for the Living History Program to be held in downtown Goldsboro, North Carolina this weekend, April 6-8.  The 135th USCT was made up of formerly enslaved men and American Indians who joined the forces of General Sherman.

The descendants will receive a personal invitation to the re-enactment and will be introduced to their ancestor.

Amy Baner has traced the lineage of many of the 135th's men through their pension records and has made contact with some of their descendants.

--Old Secesh

North Grove School in Sycamore-- Part 5: Descendants Visit

Henry and Judy beard's children and grandchildren eventually moved out of the area.  Judy outlived Henry by 22 years and eventually moved to town and lived on North Avenue where there is still a tight-knit community where many Blacks live and attend church.

Recently descendants of the Beard family came from Detroit to see the schoolhouse.  Four generations of Henry and Judy beard's son Raymond were at the North Grove School Association's fourth annual North Grove School Days.

They also visited the original five-acre farm and then Fairview Cemetery in DeKalb where Judy eas buried in 1942.

Next year, another branch of the Beard family living in Aurora, Illinois, will visit the annual North Grove School Days.

--Old Secesh

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

North Grove School in Sycamore-- Part 4: There Is a New North Grove Elementary School

There is also a North Grove Elementary School in Sycamore at 850 Republic Road with 466 students.

North Grove School, the one-room school house is located at 26745 Brickville Road.

It closed in 1952.  They have an open house every June

There is a picture on the Facebook page showing some black children, most likely descendants of Henry and Judy Beard.

--Old Secesh

Monday, April 2, 2018

North Grove School in Sycamore-- Part 3: Certificate From Pres. Obama to Henry Beard in School

There is also a certificate hanging in the school from President Barack Obama which reads:

"The United States of America honors the memory of Henry Beard.

This certificate awarded by a grateful nation in recognition of devoted and selfless consecration to the service of our country in the Armed Forces of the United States,

"Barack Obama
President of the United States"

--Old Secesh

North Grove School in Sycamore-- Part 2: Descendants of Henry Beard Come Back

About 25 descendants of Henry Beard, first black resident of Sycamore, came from the Detroit area to see the school where their ancestors attended.  Beard was a member of the 105th Illinois Infantry regiment from the DeKalb County area.

One of them was Eddie Beard, whose grandfather, Richard Beard, appears in an 1889 class photograph that is hanging in the school.

The North Grove School Association has an open house in June and November as well as on the Saturday of Sycamore's Pumpkin Festival.

--Old Secesh