PRESIDENT ULYSSES S. GRANT - AUTOGRAPH LETTER SIGNED 01/21/1878 CO-SIGNED BY: BRIGADIER GENERAL ORVILLE E. BABCOCK - HFSID 78189
ULYSSES S. GRANT and ORVILLE E. BABCOCK On a letter concerning diplomatic appointments, Grant writes about the Confederate surrender at Vicksburg. Autograph Statement signed: "U.S. Grant" on portion of ALS: "O.E. Babcock", 4p, 4½x7½. St. Johns River, Fla., 1878 January 21.
Sale Price $3,910.00
ULYSSES S. GRANT and ORVILLE E. BABCOCK
On a letter concerning diplomatic appointments, Grant writes about the Confederate surrender at Vicksburg.
Autograph Statement signed: "U.S. Grant" on portion of ALS: "O.E. Babcock", 4p, 4½x7½. St. Johns River, Fla., 1878 January 21. To Adam Badeau, U.S. Consul General, London, England. BADEAU had been Grant's Military Secretary during the Civil War and was appointed Consul General in London by President Grant in 1870, serving until 1881. Brigadier Babcock writes, in full: "Just before leaving W. for a business trip here I received your letter enclosing one to Sherman.-I went and saw Sherman who was very pleasant-said he would do what he could but said it had all been done without his knowledge. He said there evidently was a press to get your place and asked me why it was-I told him I did not know-I told him what President Hayes had promised Genl Grant-He said he knew it-and that he had spoken to Mr. Hayes-on receipt of a letter from Genl Grant on the matter. He said Hoffman from St. Petersburgh-wants to go to Paris-and came to let his recommendation-saying there was a pressure to get Badeau out-and if Tolbot could be transferred to London in Badeau's place. He thought he could get Tolbots place. He said he asked Hoffman-why they pressed for Badeau's place-and H. said he was told Badeaus habits were bad. I denied it to Sherman-and told him I knew all about it and there was nothing in it-and beside that no consulate was in better order than yours. Sherman said, 'I suppose Evarts [Hayes' Secretary of State William E. Evarts] wants the place. He don't care.' Tell Badeau I am his friend &c. I saw Bomer-and posted him also. Now when we get Longers Certificate we will follow it up and make them correct the matter. I read the manuscript you sent to Porter hurriedly. I like it-I left all well at home. I am looking after a little ____ grove I have down here and hope to find it a good thing. I have to scramble hard to save something from the wreck. I do not suppose Sherman would like to have what he said of Evarts reported. I feel sure he is your friend. I am glad to see how splendidly the Genl is received everywhere. I hope he will not think of returning for two years at least." On a world tour, Grant had left Philadelphia for Europe on May 17, 1877. Traveling eastward, he returned to San Francisco from Japan on September 20, 1879. Evidently, Badeau sent Babcock's letter to Grant, probably with a letter from former Confederate General John C. Pemberton. Returning the letter to Badeau, on the blank fourth page, Ulysses S. Grant has penned the following, in full: "I return Pemberton's letter. Your letter statement of the circumstances attending the Vicksburgh surrender are as absolutely correct as it can well be made. I presumed Bowen did ask the interview between P & myself without authority. I did not propose or submit to the settlement of terms by a refferrence [sic] to commissioners. Finding that we were about to separate without coming to an agreement Bowen-who seemed very anxious about an agreement-proposed that he and others of the Reb Army, and Gen. A.J. Smith and others of our Army who were present at the time, should consult and see if they could not agree upon terms which Pemberton and I would accept. I declined that and the terms were finally arranged between us through a correspondence which extended late into the night of the 3d of July '63." On May 1, 1863, the combined armies of Union Generals John A. McClernand and James B. McPherson had defeated Confederate Brigadier General JOHN S. BOWEN'S forces at Port Gibson, Mississippi. After that victory, General Grant's entire army set its sights on Jackson. When General WILLIAM T. SHERMAN joined him on May 7, 1863, General Grant left Grand Gulf, marched northeast, and on May 12th, defeated the Confederates at Raymond, Mississippi. On May 16-17, 1863, Grant defeated Confederate General JOHN C. PEMBERTON in successive battles at Champion's Hill and at the bridge over the Big Black River, forcing Pemberton back into Vicksburg. After two unsuccessful attempts at storming the city's fortifications, Grant opened siege. With the Union forces between them, Generals Pemberton and Joseph E. Johnston were unable to unite. "The Vicksburg Campaign" by Frank A. Kock, The Cincinnati Civil War Round Table places Grant's recollections: "On July 1st, Pemberton sensing his hopeless position asked his division commanders as to their ability to successfully evacuate their troops. Two of his generals suggested surrender, the other two practically concurring. General Bowen and Colonel Montgomery, Aide-de-Camp to Pemberton, approached the Union lines and asked that Grant meet Pemberton. Grant agreed to this in front of McPherson's Corps at 3PM. At the meeting Pemberton requested that Grant indicate his terms of surrender and Grant advised the terms were just that 'Unconditional surrender of the city and garrison.' Pemberton indicated that the conference may just as well end as these terms were not acceptable. General Bowen suggested that he and General A.J. Smith have a conference, during which Bowen suggested the Confederate Army be allowed to march out with honor and carrying small arms and field artillery. This was promptly rejected. The conference terminated, however, Grant that night sent a letter to Pemberton advising he would agree to allowing Officers to retain their side arms and clothing, the Field Staff and Cavalry Officers one horse each, the rank and file all their clothing, with such rations as were deemed necessary. Late that night Pemberton replied that the terms in the main were acceptable, but suggested an amendment that his troops march out with colors and arms to be stacked in front of their lines. These terms were acceptable to Grant. At 9AM, the garrison marched out, formed in line, stacked arms, and marched back in." On July 4, 1863, Vicksburg surrendered to General Grant. General ORVILLE E. BABCOCK (1835-1884) was Aide-de-Camp to General Grant during the Civil War. He delivered Grant's surrender summons to Lee and escorted the Confederate General to his meeting with Grant at Appomattox Courthouse, an event that he witnessed. After the war, Babcock served Grant as private secretary before becoming Superintendent of Buildings and Grounds for the City of Washington. Letters in which Ulysses S. Grant writes about an important Civil War battle are scarce and extremely desirable. The letter had been folded many times and had separated at folds. It was completely silked. However, a 2-inch vertical separation on bottom first page touches some words, all letters intact. All letters intact from silking. Lightly soiled. Erased pencil note at top of first page.
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