Mar 10, 2020 - Sale 2533

Sale 2533 - Lot 82

Price Realized: $ 406
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Estimate: $ 600 - $ 900
(CIVIL WAR--MINNESOTA.) Brookins, George W. Letters by a soldier facing Morgan's cavalry and serving at the Siege of Vicksburg. Group of 11 Autograph Letters Signed to brother Lieutenant Harvey S. Brookins of the 8th Minnesota Infantry; most with original covers, some with stamps removed. Vp, 1862-65

Additional Details

George W. Brookins (1827-1885) and his brother Harvey (1834-1907) were Vermont natives who went west as farmers to Monticello in Wright County, Minnesota. The first five of these letters were written on garrison duty in Murfreesboro, TN in May 1862 and in Kentucky February to April 1863. The 6 May 1862 letter describes a raid by a Confederate party which attempted to destroy Union rail lines, "heating them by burning cotton under them, intending to bend them." After a protracted hunt, the Minnesota boys succeeded in capturing "all but 8 or 10, who with their leader, the celebrated Morgan, made their escape." An 18 June 1863 letter was written at the Siege of Vicksburg, passing on hearsay from one of General Grant's staffers: "The Gen. told him some time ago that he could take the city in 2 hours, in case there was any danger of an attack from the rear, but he said it would cost so many lives that he did not like to do it unless it was necessary." Rumors of mines dug under the fort are discussed, and "300 rebels made a break & rushed over the works and came over to our army. The Rebels shot 30 of them while they were doing it." The final 5 letters were written at Little Rock, AR in March and April 1864. The letters are generally lively, legible, and full of detail.
Philatelic enthusiasts might note a stamped cover with a 27 July Memphis postmark, bearing an additional red inked stamp for "Regular Memphis & White River Packet Rowena."