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You are purchasing the exact item. It is not a reproduction. It is completely original and is a new find from a Richmond, Virginia Estate where it had been for 150+ years.
This is a four page letter SIGNED WITH THE ORIGINAL SIGNATURES of 26 officers (25 field officers with rank and company affiliation plus the Quartermaster) of the 42nd Virginia who are protesting up their chain of command that they have not been given consideration to become the Commanding Colonel of the 42nd. They are protesting that an outsider (Capt. B. W. Leigh) was brought in by Brigadier General John Robert Jones. 11 other officers' names are listed but they did not sign because they were not present because of furloughs.
Then there is handwritten commentary from General John Robert Jones, Major General Isaac Ridgeway Trimble and then from Stonewall Jackson's AAG, Sandie Pendleton.
This letter was written by the 26 officers of the 42nd Virginia, who headed it "Corbins Neck, Va." The letter was then routed to the staff headquarters at the winter headquarters of the Confederate 2nd Army Corps and it was endorsed by two generals (J. R. Jones and I.R. Trimble) and Sandie Pendleton, Stonewall Jackson's Assistant Adjutant General.
According to W. G. Bean's Book Stonewall's Man: Sandie Pendleton, "Presumably Sandie had met Kate Corbin [his future wife] before Christmas Day, as staff quarters were located near the Corbin House."
This letter, after being written at the 42nd's Camp elswehere, was sent over to the Moss Neck Plantation House where the Corbin Family had made a building available for Stonewall Jackson's Command Staff. It was quickly endorsed by J. R. Jones, I. R. Trimble and Sandie Pendleton after reading it and the endorsement of commanding officer (Samuel H. Saunders) on the reverse, it was forwarded to the commanding General of Jones' Brigade, General John Robert Jones) who wrote extensive commentary and forwarded it to his commander, Major General Isaac Ridgeway Trimble, who wrote commentary and forwarded it to his commander, Lt. General Thomas Jonathan "Stonewall" Jackson. Jackson's Assistant Adjutant General, Major Sandie Pendleton wrote a final response and forwarded the "protest" back.
In Bean's book, Footnote 33 in Chapter 6 states that Jed Hotchkiss (another Command Staff officer) wrote his wife on March 15, 1863 that "the anticipation of a social evening in Kate Corbin's company was ever present on Sandie Pendleton's mind as he went about his daily tasks." Pendleton's endorsement on this letter is dated March 13, 1863.
This letter is dated just before Stonewall Jackson moved his command staff away from Moss Neck Plantation in Caroline County to Hamilton's Crossing. The move occurred in mid-March.
The document opens to about 12" (high) by 16" (wide), but each page is 12"x8". It is in remarkably good condition. The paper actually has the US Capitol embossed in the upper left of the page, so it is probably captured paper. There is minor separation along the folds at right--1" at the worst. There is separation at the corners of the middle -- I tried to show this in the overall photos (the last two).
Everything written after this paragraph in this description in BLACK is actually written on the document as I have transcribed it. Anything in RED is an annotation to what has been written to provide historical context. I have added next to the officers' of the 42nds' names a brief summary of the paragraph that appears in the 42nd Virginia Regimental History by John Chapla. This is a scarce book and I will include my copy (3rd edition, unsigned) with the purchase document so you can read the entire paragraph and accomplishments (and ultimate fate) of each member listed. My copy is sound but has some toning on the page ends. The 42nd's unit history has extensive coverage of each of the men listed here except for Trimble and Pendleton.
Corbin’s Neck, Va.
March 10th 1863
Hon. James A. Seddon
We the undersigned officers of the 42nd Virginia Regiment, desire respectfully to make known to you the following facts, and to express our wishes in the matter. Our Regiment is without field officers, and has been since the 9th Day of August 1862 [the Battle of Cedar Mountain where the 42nd was routed in hand-to-hand combat with 52 KIA and 58 WIA and 8 captured (24% of the 435 officers and men present]. On or about the 1st of December 1862, Capt. B. W. Leigh of the 1st Va. Battalion was assigned by order of Brig. Gen. J. R. Jones, to our regiment as acting Colonel. We immediately held a meeting and passed a series of resolutions, which whilst they expressed our appreciation of Capt. B. W. Leigh as an officer and a gentleman, protested against his being assigned to the command of the regiment and expressed our wish that the field officers be billed, according to law of Congress, by promotion from the officers of the regt. And that we were not willing to wave [SIC] our claims in favor of Capt. R. W. Leigh. These resolutions were forwarded to Brig. Gen. J. R. Jones about the 1st Jan. 1863. Brig. Gen. Jones sent an order to the Regiment, that all officers who desired to be examined for promotion for one of the field officers, should send up their names at once. As the ranking Captain of the regiment was absent, in consequence of wound received in battle, no names were sent up for examination for Col. of the Regiment, the results of which examination has never transpired. It is reported that Brig. Gen. Jones has recommended to the War Department that Capt. B. W. Leigh [1st Battalion Virginia Infantry when assigned to report as acting colonel on 11/30/1862. Joined regiment 12/2/1862. Present through 1/23/1863 when recommended for promotion to full colonel ant to command of the regiment by Brigadier General John R. Jones. Present through 3/5/1863 when Brigadier General Jones urged General Samuel Cooper, The Adjutant and Inspector General to promote him [further]. Present through 3/20/1863. Promoted to Major on 6/3/1863 and assigned as the Assistant Adjutant General and Chief of Staff for Major General Edward Johnson. Col. B. W. Leigh was Killed at Gettysburg on July 2, 1863] be appointed the permanent Col. of our Regt. If such a recommendation has been sent in, we must respectfully protest against his appointment, and in not willing to wave [SIC] our claims to promotion in the regiment in his favor. We further desire that the ranking Captains be promoted to field officers, and if they found incompetent, that other officers of the regiment be examined and promoted. If it were possible that none should be found worthy of promotion, we as the privilege of being allowed to suggest the names of those who shall be selected from other commands to be put over us. With the expression of the wish that our regiment be supplied with field officers as soon as possible, this paper is respectfully submitted through the proper hierarchy for your considerations and actions.
Exact Signatures (in the order that they appear with the rank and company they listed):
Jesse M. Richardson, Capt. Co. A [Wounded the last time on 3/25/1865 at Ft. Stedman and died 5/5/1865]
Larkin T. Burge, 1st Lt. Co. A [Resigned 3/25/1863 to Join 32nd Va. Calvary Battalion]
Abner Dobyns, Capt., Co. B [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/12/1864 sent to Ft. Delaware then Morris Island to be under CSA Fire]
Jno. W. Dillon, 2nd Lt., Co. B [Killed in Action on 11/27/1863 at Payne’s Farm]
William D. Williams, Capt., Co. C [Killed in Action on 5/5/1864 at Wilderness]
C. C. Franklin, 2nd Lt., Co. C [Killed in Action 5/3/1862 at Chancellorsville]
Wm. H. Hatcher, Jr., 2nd Lt., Co. C [Captured 5/12/1864 at Spotsylvania CH and sent to Point Lookout, then Elmyra]
R. W. Withers, Capt., Co. D [Captured 8/25/1864 at Shepherdstown and sent to Point Lookout]
Henry D. Puckett. 1st Lt., Co. D [Killed in Action on 5/3/1863 at Chancellorsville]
John Arrington, 2nd Lt., Co. D [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/12/1864 sent to Ft. Delaware then Morris Island to be under CSA Fire]
Wm. Persinger, 1st Lt., Co. E [Wounded at Chancellorsville on 5/2-3/1863 and died 7/30/1863]
R. B. Edington, 2nd Lt., Co. E [Wounded at Gettysburg 7/2/1863 and died at a field hospital 7/4/1863]
Greenville Penn, 2nd Lt., Co. H [Captured 9/22/1864 at Fisher’s Hill – Sent to Ft. Delaware and returned home after the war]
John C. Forbes, Capt., Co. I [Commanded the regiment at various dates, last record 2/5/1865. Died in Henry County in 1882]
Thos. S. Mitchell, 1st Lt., Co. I [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/10/1864 sent to Ft. Delaware then Morris Island to be under CSA Fire]
J. D. Biggs, 2nd Lt., Co. I [Commanded Various Companies. Paroled at Appomattox Court House on April 9, 1865]
Samuel H. Saunders, Capt., Co. K [With the assistance of two of his men, he captured 80 of the enemy at Cedar Mountain on August 9, 1862. He was ultimately Regimental Commander 7/30-8/30/1863 – Survived and Paroled 6/2/1865]
Oscar W. Spriggs, Capt., Co. D [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/10-12/1864 and sent to Ft. Delaware and released 6/16/1865]
R. B. Shearer, 2nd Lt., Co. I [Killed in Action on 7/9/1864 at Monocacy, Maryland]
Robert N. Andrews, 1st Lt., Co. D [Wounded 7/18-19/1864 near [probably] Leesburg sent to Charlottesville & Lynchburg hospitals]
Jerry W. Moorman, 2nd Lt., Co. D [Captured 5/10-12/1864 at Spotsylvania CH and sent to Fort Delaware where paroled 6/10/1865]
James M. Frazier, 2nd Lt., Co. D [Captured at Gettysburg 7/2-3/1863 then various prisons, exchanged 2/24/1865 at City Point]
P B. Gravely, Capt., Co. F [Commanded Regiment 10/1864-2/15/1865 Died in Danville in 1928]
D. F. King, 1st Lt. Co. F [Resigned 5/8/1863 due to acknowledging his incompetency – Died in 1922]
T. M. Gravely, 2nd Lt., Co. F [Captured 5/10-12/1864 at Spotsylvania CH and sent to various prisons - paroled 6/16/1865]
Listing of “The following officers are absent” (the way they are listed with rank as-listed and company) and corrections have been made to spelling and middle initials:
Henry M. Stratton, Lt., Co. A [Deserted to enemy 2/21/1865 at Petersburg]
Geo. L. Richardson, Lt., Co. A [Resigned due to disability 2/6/1864]
James W. Helm, Lt., Co. B [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/10-12/1864 sent to Ft. Delaware then Morris Island to be under CSA Fire]
James L. Tompkins, Lt., Co. B [Assumed Command of 42nd Virginia by 4/9/1865 when paroled at Appomattox as its commander]
D. W. Garrett., Lt., Co. C [Captured Spotsylvania CH 5/12/1864 sent to Ft. Delaware then Morris Island to be under CSA Fire]
A. J. Deyerle, Capt., Co. E [Elected to the Virginia Legislature 10/28/1863 in Richmond and Promoted To Colonel]
A. J. Heslep, Lt., Co. F [Wounded at Cedar Run on 8/9/1862 and Retired to Invalid Corps 4/25/1864]
F. A Barrow, Lt., Co. F [Wounded at Fredericksburg 12/4/1862 and resigned due to disability 12/14/1863]
Vacant, 2nd Lt., Co. G
E. L. Penn, 1st Lt., Co H [Wounded Chancellorsville 5/10-12/1863; resigned 12/11/63 and became an enrolling officer. Died 1903]
Capt Vacant, Co. H
J. W. Critz, Lt., Co. H [Hospitalized 6/2/1864 at Danville when he got a 60 day sick leave. Present 10/31/1864 w/no further record]
J. W. Talliaferio, 1st Lt. Co. K [Killed in Action Commanding Company K at Gettysburg on 7/2-3/1863]
Vacant, 2nd Lt. Co. K
Vacant, 2nd Lt., Co. K
Then an Endorsement by the Assistant Quartermaster For Supply, Fleming Saunders:
With a high appreciation of Capt. Leigh as an accomplished officer & agreeable gentleman, I am nevertheless fully convinced that naming is of the utmost importance & therefore concur with the above officers in an appreciation of their wishes –
Then endorsements pm the back page by (in the following order):
Camp Corbins Neck March 11th 1863 / Officers of the 42nd Reg Va. Infantry / A communication / Respectfully forwarded S. H. Saunders, Comdg. Regt.
[From the 42nd Virginia Infantry by John Chapla: Samuel H. Saunders: Lt. Col.,
F&S. 1860 census, age 30, farmer, Retreat Post Office, Franklin
County. Enlisted 6/17/1861 at Rocky Mount, Franklin County as 2nd Lt.,
Company K. Promoted to 1st Lt. 12/13/1861. Present, commanding Co.
K at various times through 2/18/1862 when furloughed 30 days. Present
3/27/1862. Elected Capt. Co. K. on 4/21/1862. Present through
10/10/1862. Lynchburg Hospital then furloughed 10/24/1862 on sick
leave. Hospitalized until 12/13/1862. Present through 1/2/1863 when
examined for promotion and found to be a 'brave man of good character, but
deficient in military knowledge.' Brigade commander recommended promotion
to major 1/23/1863. Present as company commander until wounded 5/2-3/1863
at Chancellorsville. Richmond Hospital 5/6-9/1863 when sent to Liberty
(Bedford). Returned and was regimental inspecting officer by 6/30/1863.
Regimental commander by 7/30/1863 to 8/30/1863. Present and assumed duty
of acting major by 11/30/1863. Acting Lt. Col by 1/5/1864 when furloughed
for 15 days. Returned and promoted 2/11/1864 to major (to rank from
11/30/1862) and to Lt. Col. (to rank from 11/27/1863). Present and
appointed to command 3rd regimental group, Terry's Brigade (10th, 23rd, 37th
Virginia Infantry Regiments) by 8/20/1864. Wounded in the left arm
9/19/1864 at Winchester. At Charlottesville and Lynchburg hospitals through
1/26/1865. Present, commanding regiment, by 3/2/1865 when departed on
sick leave. Absent through 6/2/1865 when paroled at Rocky Mount, Franklin
According to Robert Krick's book Lee's Colonels, Samuel Hyde Saunders was a Farmer in Franklin Counting in 1860 and was 30 years old. He accepted a commission as the Lieutenant of Company K of the 42nd Virginia Infantry in 1861 and was appointed Captain on April 21, 1862 and a Lt. Colonel on November 29, 1863. He was Wounded at Chancellorsville. He was also wounded again (in the arm) at Payne's Farm in November 1863 and again (also in the arm) in September 1864. He was Paroled at Franklin Court House on June 5, 1863 and was known to be alive in 1870 and living in Franklin County.]
Hd Qr. Jones Brigade
Respectfully Forwarded. This regiment has been without a field officer since the 9th of August 1862. The command shifted from Capt. To Capt. Until the regiment was without system in the management of its affairs, and almost without discipline. Under such circumstances I applied to General [Thomas J. “Stonewall”] Jackson to assign to me for duty Capt. B. W. Leigh, 1st Va. Bat., an accomplished gentleman, a brave an thoroughly systematic officer and disciplinarian and I placed him in temporary command of the regiment, the good results of which assignment are now seen in the fine discipline and complete system in the management of the affairs of the regiment which I think is not surpassed in any regiment in the service. This assignment was only to be temporary—until the qualifications of the officers of the regiment could be examined for promotion. About the 1st of Jan’y ’63 a board of Examiners was convened and an order issued the regiment for all officers who desired promotion to Col. and the other vacant positions to present their names. Four Captains presented their names. None for Col., two for Lt. Col. and two for Major, one of the latter afterward, withdrew his name. Of the three examined only one was passed by the board, he was recommended for Lt. Col. I forwarded the proceedings and recommendations. The 5th Capt. (when if he had been present and able for duty I am satisfied is not qualified for Col) had been absent wounded when the examination took place. For 5 months has been absent nearly 3 months since and understand will not be able for field duty for a long time to come.
I therefore recommend Capt. B. W. Leigh to the favorable consideration of the department – He has served with gallantry during the war, is Just the man for the place, his ability is acknowledged by the officers signing this paper and think the good of the service requires his immediate appointment, as it is important to have the regiment organized for the field as speedily as possible. Capt. Richardson the first signer of this paper is under arrest for disobedience of orders & Capt. Spriggs & Saunders appeared before the b[oar]d and were pronounced unfit for promotion.
[John Robert Jones was a native of Harrisonburg and was born March 12, 1827 and educated at the Virginia Military Institute. He became principal of a military school in Urbanna, Maryland. He fought with the 33rd Virginia at First Manassas and in the Valley Campaign of 1862, rising to Lt. Colonel. Upon the recommendation of General T. J. Jackson, he was appointed Brigadier General to rank from June 23, 1862 and assigned to command a brigade in Trimble’s division of the 2nd Corps. During the Battle of Chancellorsville (4/30-5/6/1863) he left the field “owing to to ulcerated condition of his legs. He was relieved and his brigade reassigned. He was captured at Smithburg, Tennessee on July 4, 1863 and kept a POW until the end of the war.]
Hd Qr. Trimble’s Div.
Mar 13th 1863
Respectfully forwarded & approved on the principle that when an officer is proved competent the goo of the service demands his appointments.
[Isaac Ridgeway Trimble was born in Culpeper County, Virginia on May 15, 1802 and graduated from West Point in 1822. At the outbreak of war in 19=861 he engaged in the burning of bridges north of Baltimore to prevent Federal troops to entering Washington. He received a Commission from Virginia as a Colonel in the state forces and constructed defenses at Norfolk. On August 9, 1861 he was appointed a Brigadier General and assigned to command a brigade in Ewell’s division during the Valley Campaign of 1862, the Seven Days Battles and at Cedar Mountain and during the capture of Manassas Junction. During the second Battle of Manassas he was wounded but returned to participate in Pickett’s Charge at Gettysburg where he lost a leg and was captured and not exchanged until February 1865. He died in 1888 in Baltimore.]
Hd Qrs. 2nd Army Corps
Res. Forwarded to [then written over in a different color with] “Resol. Returned.” Attention called to Army Regs. Par 20.7 which foroffers the forwarding of a combined protest. If any offier wishes to protest against the action, his communication will then be forwarded.
A[lexander] S[wift “Sandie”] Pendleton
[Alexander Swift "Sandie" Pendleton (September 28, 1840 – September 23, 1864) was an officer on the staff of Confederate Generals Thomas J. Jackson, Richard S. Ewell and Jubal A. Early during the Civil War.
Sandie Pendleton was born in Alexandria, Virginia, the only son of Episcopal priest and future Confederate General William N. Pendleton and his wife Anzolette Elizabeth Page. His father was the first principal of Episcopal High School in Alexandria, but left in 1844 to establish a private school for boys near Baltimore, Maryland as well as serve as rector of two nearby parishes. Between 1847 and 1853, the Pendleton family lived in Frederick, Maryland while Rev. Pendleton served at All Saints Church (Frederick, Maryland). Sandie studied at a private school for boys, since his parents thought that as the only boy in a household of girls and delicate in health, he needed association with other boys to develop manly qualities, although Sandie also experienced bullying there because of those same issues.
When Sandie was 13, the family moved to Lexington, Virginia, because of the free tuition available at Washington College to ministers' sons, as well as because Latimer Parish (Grace Episcopal Church) offered Rev. Pendleton a job and he thought he could also supplement his income by opening a boarding school for younger boys. Sandie Pendleton completed the course of studies at Washington College in three years, during which he met Maj. Thomas Jackson (later nicknamed Stonewall) of the VMI faculty through the Graham literary society. Sandie graduated at the top of his class in 1857 and delivered the commencement address on the character of Virginia exemplified in the patriots of 1776 such as his ancestors. Along with intellect, honor, and a spirit of independence, Pendleton extolled "a firm adherence to right, and a reverence for the wise and holy ruler of the universe." Sandie Pendleton remained in Lexington for the next two years, teaching mathematics and Latin at his alma mater, as well as helping his father at the school for boys and visiting relatives in Eastern Virginia.
By 1859, Sandie Pendleton had earned enough money to begin studies at the University of Virginia. During his first year, he completed half of the required coursework for a degree, but the civil war broke out in April of his second year, with the fall of Ft. Sumter and as Virginia troops went toward Harpers Ferry to seize the federal arsenal. Because his family wanted Sandie to receive his degree on July 1, he sought a deferment to that date from the government in Richmond, but was denied. Thus, pursuant to his commission as a second lieutenant in the Provisional Army of Virginia, Sandie Pendleton left for Harpers Ferry on June 11, having only completed four of seven examinations necessary for the master's degree, and not having submitted the required essay.
At Harper's Ferry, Sandie Pendleton reported for duty and temporarily worked with the Rockbridge Artillery, a volunteer unit his father had organized and brought there a few weeks earlier. Soon Stonewall Jackson, commanding the First Brigade of the Army of the Shenandoah (i.e. Confederate forces in Harpers Ferry led by General Joseph E. Johnston), requested young Pendleton join his staff as its ordnance officer. Sandie Pendleton soon showed his capabilities as a staff officer and his valor at the First Battle of Bull Run (a/k/a Manassas, where Jackson got his nickname). He served with distinction in the Valley Campaign and helped transport Jackson's troops to surprise Union forces at Mechanicsville to protect Richmond in June. He then returned with Jackson to the Shenandoah Valley to launch the Maryland Campaign in the summer of 1862, which culminated in the bloody Battle of Antietam. Jackson later promoted him to his staff's adjutant general, and Pendleton continued to serve Jackson (whose exact commands varied) in every battle until the latter's death at the Battle of Chancellorsville in May 1863.
After accompanying Jackson's corpse to its final resting place back at Lexington in the Shenandoah Valley, Pendleton returned to duty with the Second Corps staff under its new commander, Richard S. Ewell during the Gettysburg Campaign. In 1864, when Jubal A. Early assumed command of the Second Corps, he promoted Pendleton to chief of staff with the rank of lieutenant colonel. The Second Corps again returned to the Shenandoah Valley that summer, and attempted the last Confederate invasion of the north.
The Union assigned Major General Philip Sheridan to put down resistance in the valley once and for all. Early was defeated at the Third Battle of Winchester on September 19, 1864, forcing the Confederates to retreat to nearby Fisher's Hill. When Union forces attacked on September 22, 1864, Pendleton was fatally wounded in the abdomen. He was moved to the nearby town of Woodstock, where he died the following day. Initially interred near the battlefield, his body was exhumed and returned to his family in Lexington, where he was buried near Stonewall Jackson on October 24, 1864.]
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