October 2014 Auction Ends Thursday, October 30th, 5pm Pacific


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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 10/30/2014
Large archive of Civil War photos and letters by Frederick Meyer, a German immigrant who served in the U.S. Navy aboard the blockade steamboat U.S.S. Flag off the coast of Charleston. Though his English is broken, Meyer writes at length to his wife Mary in 21 letters detailing the often violent clashes between Union and Confederate ships. The first letter is dated 26 February 1862 from Annapolis, Maryland. Partially translated from his broken English, lot includes: Letter from Charleston on 2 November 1862, ''...My dear, I received your letter, found a little bag of camphor there for to wear around my neck. I am very much pleased to you for at neck my clothes smell so good...thanks to God that you was so lucky to get a good stake, our stake goes from Rattlesnake Creek to Bulls Bay...Last week we...sank the 3 [steamers]...she got up to Fort Moltre there resunk on the site. Charleston there lays a steamer...Mary you speak about the satisfaction they won't give none they said it is no good for we got sent from one ship to another then that be no good. I had the luck I want I want home I that first price. I got sent back again to my own vessel there is 15 gone this time, I don't think come back again but getting none no I got half that luck to be sent home again I a price then I wot got libata and money that time I was in Pelladlefe we had not been ship long know if they tore that we would not come back. Mary my dear is a hard time coming. I hope you must have the best that you can and take all the comfort you can pray to God and he will not forsake you for no fondest present melting best yearns like thy gods to make thee blest.'' On 12 January 1863 he writes, ''My Dear, I received your letter the 3 Jan in good health and a letter from my brother Henry...the Southern people kiss the same flag...Washington gained the freedom that flag has 7 stars and 2 red stripes...I think God done me a great favor sending me on board the Old Flag...I call this God's gift to me...the battle was 15 December that take them 6 days to get to Fredericksburg...'' On 7 February 1863 he writes of a clash that occurred between ships CSS Chicora, CSS Palmetto State and USS Mercedita, in part ''...Saturday morning 5 o'clock...There was several men killed then they had to surrender...15 killed, 31 wounded...fire all around as shells bust on top us...'' A letter dated 13 April 1863 pertains to the attack on Ft. Sumter by duPont. Meyer states: ''...I got a few minutes now to write a few lines about the battle at Charleston...300 pounds rifles...Mary if I was home I would tell you...what is the truth so if anybody asks you better tell them that they have disgraced the country if they make this blunder not good. The war will last 20 years...I got your letters, I got one the morning the bombardment began...from me at prison...'' On 1 September 1863 he reports, ''...Great work here, Sumter looks like an old ruin. The southeast corner is gone...Hilmor and Dilgrean...there was no man that worked together so well...they tried to storm us three times but in war we whipped them three to one - we was one thousand strong...cross the river now we can shell the city...'' On 23 February 1864 he writes, ''My Dear a few lines to let you know that I am on my old station again. We sailed from Boston the 4th of February and I received the same day an hinkigaf. I am glad that we are here for the water was disagreeable in Boston...6 days ago the rebels blowed up one of our ships and as luck have, the water was not deep, there was 12 man lost, the rest saved them. Saved by getting up in the rigging...'' On 19 June 1864 he writes, ''My dear, I received your letter a few days ago but I cannot answer about war over. There is no news here - it is one thing over and over again and I be sick and tired of this life at be shape they want my time is expired so that I can be my master once more they are carrying the rules out very strict now more than what has been but there is no fear in me. I can stand on my hat 12 months the reason it makes it so bad is there is too many volunteer officers in the navy, they don't know the least thing about a ship...from your loving husband Frederick Meyer / If you feel the same as I do you wish me to home...you got the best of me you see plenty man but I don't see no woman here but I think I will get get home one of these days...'' On 23 December 1864 he writes, ''...Savannah is taken. The Savannah ram blowed up now it goes for Charleston. Sherman looked like an old farmer the USS Flag is the first ship that held Sherman at Fort MacGallast. There was not many killed...'' The final letter is datelined 30 January 1865 from Charleston, ''My Dear, I received your letter today that was mailed the 7 January. I have been looking for it. I began to think that you had gone for a sogaga and took Harry for a drummer boy...I don't think that is a good plan to buy an article then wait for the price to rise before you pay you got to work sly to catch a fox in his hole different hats different yarn...There is no news here as I know of, it is the same thing over again but I am looking for the month of May at is coming slow...if the letters come so slow as this last one I think that you must slip putta cold on won sit I suppose Harry sleeps on one side so my side is which I claim one side of you and sometimes I take the whole claim of both sides...you know there is a good deal of lost time to make up last summer so take good care of yourself...'' Letters run 1-2pp. on 5.25'' x 8'' ruled stationery. Accompanied by a sepia tone cabinet card photo of Meyer in uniform on U.S. Art Co. paper, measuring 5.25'' x 7.25''. Foxing, toning and fading. Also includes a 4'' x 5'' black and white photo of Meyer and an associate in similar dress, mounted to paper and measuring 5'' x 6'' overall. Some toning and remnant of photo adhered to verso, else near fine.
Civil War Archive by Frederick Meyer, Aboard the U.S.S. Flag -- ''...several men killed then they had to surrender...15 killed, 31 wounded...fire all around as shells bust on top us...''
Civil War Archive by Frederick Meyer, Aboard the U.S.S. Flag -- ''...several men killed then they had to surrender...15 killed, 31 wounded...fire all around as shells bust on top us...''
Click above for larger image.
Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $1,500
Final prices include buyers premium.: $0
Number Bids: 0
Auction closed on Thursday, October 30, 2014.
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