COLONEL WILLIAM A. HOWARD - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 02/17/1861 - HFSID 174711
Sale Price $531.25
COLONEL WILLIAM A. HOWARD (CIVIL WAR)
2 months before the outbreak of the Civil War, the future Naval Colonel calls upon his friend Senator Fessenden for a position in the Union Army.
Autograph Letter signed: "W.A.Howard", 2 pages (front and back, blank 3rd page), 8x9¾. Lag Harbor, Long Island, New York, 17 February 1861. To "My Dear Sir" [U.S. Senator] William Pitt Fessenden, Washington, D.C., In full: "I wrote you some time since, to use me in any way you saw proper for the service of our Country, and its unfortunate position, two days after I was taken down with a Rheumatic Fever which confined me to a room seven weeks. I left New York City, as soon as was able to move, for this place, is getting once shop to be ready for service in a fortnight. I was exceedingly anxious to head the Expedition for the Relief of Fort. 'Sumpter' [sic, Sumter] I have a plan matured & as soon as I am in a fit condition to carry it out I will present it to Genl. Scott in person. I have no doubt I should have been well long ago, had I not fretted for 'the opportunity lost'. My suggestion expecting the Navy Dept. depends upon it was a good one, not for myself, but for the advantage of the administration. That Dept. is thoroughly corrupt depend upon it, from Head to Heel. Don't suppose for a moment friend Fessenden that I am anxious to enroll myself for life, if even for 4 years on the miserable list of Washington Clerks. I only change how much service I could render for a time in that position. I love my country, I love the Old Banner and will serve in any position to replace it to its once high & proud Eminence. Let it be re-hoisted (over) re-hoisted and Saluted by those that handed it down, or Burn Every rebel City on the Southern Coast. It grieves me to my very soul, to see such men as chase & Sea bitter form mass of Maine, educated fed & clothed taken from obscure positions & made men of to the first to insult the flag that made them. Is there to be no punishment for such men? They had better keep out of my hands, they never would receive any quarter from me. I shall endeavor to place myself in some position to be useful to the country and the administration. May I depend upon your assistance? I hope to be in Washington on the Fourth or soon after. I would be there on that day if thought my services were required, I think however the old General has made the idea of taking the Capital. Unfathimable [sic]. Your time is sufficiently occupied without any aid of mine I will therefore merely ask you if you have time, write me a few lines. Believe me very sincerely, Your friend." William A. HOWARD (1807-1871) was a veteran Coast Guard officer who commanded a detachment of marine artillery during battles on the Carolina coast during the Civil War. At the beginning of the war, he was commissioned as a Colonel of the 1st New York Heavy Artillery in the defenses around Portsmouth & Norfolk. Earlier in his career, when he commanded the revenue cutter Jackson, he was said to look so resplendent in his Coast Guard uniform that naval officers pressured Navy Secretary Levi Woodbury to remove epaulettes from Coast Guard uniforms. In the years before the Civil War, he was in private business as a shipbuilder. William Pitt FESSENDEN (1806-1869) had resigned a seat in the U.S. Senate to assume, at the personal behest of President Lincoln, the Cabinet post of Treasury Secretary after the resignation of Secretary Chase. Fessenden, who as Chairman the important Senate Finance Committee (1861-1864) had played an important role in raising revenues for the Union cause, but he served at Treasury for only eight months (July 5, 1864 - March 3, 1865). Thereafter he returned to the Senate, becoming chairman of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction. Lightly creased. File holes at left edge. Toned. Page separation from blank third page. Ink note (unknown hand) on verso of blank third page. Otherwise, fine condition.
Following offer submission users will be contacted at their account email address within 48 hours. Our response will be to accept your offer, decline your offer or send you a final counteroffer. All offers can be viewed from within the "Document Offers" area of your HistoryForSale account. Please review the Make Offer Terms prior to making an offer.
If you have not received an offer acceptance or counter-offer email within 24-hours please check your spam/junk email folder.