FRAMED FOUR PAGE LETTER WRITTEN BY STONEWALL JACKSON TO HIS SISTER WITH PERIOD LITHOGRAPHED CDV OF THE CONFEDERATE HERO

$5,950.00 SOLD

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Item Code: 2021-935

Letter is written entirely in Jackson’s hand and signed by him simply as “THOMAS.” The letter is dated “LEXINGTON, VA DECEMBER 6, 1855” when Jackson was an instructor at the Virginia Military Institute. The letter is addressed to “DEAR SISTER” which would be Jackson’s only surviving sibling, Laura Ann Jackson Arnold. The letter is written on blue paper in period ink and is legible throughout. It is four pages long and laid flat in the frame it meas. approx. 12.75 x 8.00 inches and is in excellent condition.

Jackson begins the letter by his anxiety of not hearing from his sister for a long time and worries that she might be ill. He then launches into the recent gossip concerning a Mrs. McDowell, the former wife of Governor Thomas of Maryland. Jackson talks about her impending marriage to a Mr. Miller, pastor of a church in Philadelphia and how Mr. Miller’s church forced him to resign his pastorate due to the church’s dissatisfaction with the marriage.

Next, Jackson discusses his late wife’s family and discusses paying for schooling for Cousin William Junkin. He states that helping William is “… rather acting in opposition to my judgement…” and mentions money previously given that was not used for William’s education. He then inquires of his sister about relatives on his side of the family, namely the Whites.

The letter closes with Jackson discussing land warrants and his desire to purchase some and mentions he thinks they will be cheaper in Beverly, Virginia than up north. He ends the letter “Your affectionate brother, Thomas.”

Jackson and his sister Laura were very close growing up and into adulthood and were faithful correspondents until the Civil War began. Laura had Union sympathies and the differing viewpoints of the siblings strained the relationship to the point that the correspondence ceased.

Framed with the letter is a period lithograph CDV of General Jackson. Image is a nice one but does have some light foxing.

The two pieces are together in one frame measuring approx. 22.75 x 14.00 inches. Frame is modern faux wood with a gray mat. Both the letter and the CDV have been mounted using acid-free corners to hold them to a brown backing. Only the front of the CDV and the first and last page of the letter are visible. If desired the solid backing can be replaced with glass so both sides of each item can be seen or if desired they can easily be removed to a new frame.

With the letter is a nicely framed typed transcript. There is also a letter of provenance attesting to the fact that the letter came from the Great Great Grandson of Jackson’s sister, Laura and another document showing the family lineage from Laura to the Grandson who wrote the letter of provenance. Both are done on our stationery.

Lastly there is a letter of authenticity that accompanied the letter when we first sold it in 1998.

This is a museum quality item with great provenance properly framed for display.

Thomas Jonathan “Stonewall” Jackson was born January 21, 1824 in Clarksburg, Virginia.  He graduated from West Point in 1846 and began his career in the artillery as a brevet second lieutenant. Jackson fought in the Mexican-American War from 1846-1848 and received brevets to the rank of major for his actions.

In 1852, Jackson resigned his military commission and accepted a teaching position at Virginia Military Institute in Lexington, Virginia. His style as a professor was controversial, but nonetheless invaluable, as VMI continues to use many of his philosophies today.

At the beginning of the Civil War, Jackson accepted orders as a Colonel of Virginia militia and commanded a Confederate garrison at Harper’s Ferry. Promoted to Brigadier General,  Jackson led a brigade at the Battle of First Manassas where he earned the sobriquet “Stonewall.” In November 1861, Jackson was promoted to Major General and dispatched to the Shenandoah Valley.

The following spring, Jackson conducted a campaign in the Valley that ultimately defeated three different Union forces and brought him international fame. He then transferred his command to Robert E. Lee's Army of Northern Virginia at Richmond. Jackson fought in the Seven Days' Battles which secured the Confederate capital from an advancing Union army under Maj. Gen. George B. McClellan. During the Second Manassas Campaign, Lee utilized Jackson's regiments in a flanking movement that helped bring the defeat of Maj. Gen. John Pope's Army of Virginia. Jackson fought in the Maryland Campaign and in the fall of 1862 was promoted to Lieutenant General.

Jackson fought at Fredericksburg in December and on May 2, 1863, he executed a devastating flank march and assault at the Battle of Chancellorsville. That evening, while returning from a reconnaissance, Jackson was mistakenly fired on by his own men and wounded.  He died on May 10 at the plantation of Thomas Chandler at Guinea Station of pneumonia and is buried in Lexington, Virginia. [ad] [PH:L]

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